A few weeks back, a friend of mine (Anneliese van Straaten) told me about an afternoon tea she’s planning on hosting and invited me to come. I was especially intrigued by the reason behind this event…a little baby boy, Zac, had been born prematurely and his mum died a few days later. I asked her if she knew the couple and she said “No”. I thought to myself, “Wow!” and looked at her with admiration. What an unselfish act of kindness… Today, a week before the afternoon tea, my family and I went out “window shopping” and I remembered little Zac’s upcoming baby shower.
I proceeded to buy a few items of toiletries, some non-slip socks and a pair of shoes. The shoes being size 1-2…Babies grow so quickly and I wanted him to have something a few years from now as well. In my mind, I pictured him walking in them and visualised a happy, smiling even laughing baby – taking his first steps. I then felt a little tug at my heart, because it hit me that this little boy’s mum would not be there to hold her son or be part of any of his “firsts“…at least not physically. I cannot imagine that the road ahead of Zac, his dad or his older brother is going to be easy.
If I am able to help my friend in her unselfish act of compassion to achieve just a glimmer of hope for this family, then so help me God, I will. My teenage son looked in the trolley, and seeing the baby items, asked: “Who’s that for?” I told him that they were for a little boy who’s mum died after giving birth to him. “Do you know them?” “No” He looked at me confused and asked, “Why would you buy something for someone you don’t even know?” I just smiled at him and simply said: “Because I care…” How often don’t we hear these kind of stories and just shrug it off because it doesn’t affect us? Saying and thinking things like…we don’t know the person/people…we don’t need to let it bother us…we don’t need to care… It costs nothing to show emotion or show other’s that you care…just a little bit of empathy.
In fact, I think you grow as a person when you do AND you feel good about yourself. Your soul is nourished by kind acts, much like a flower when it rains to quench its thirst and the sunshine to help it grow. The smallest deed might seem like nothing to you but to the person in need, at that very point in time, it means the world. Now I realise, that little Zac and his family will never even know that I personally had gifted him a few items…and, it really doesn’t matter. That’s not the point. The point is this little boy, whose life on earth, might have started under such tragic circumstances, has the love and support of a community who cares. Compassion and Empathy are two things I think are worth expressing to our fellow brothers and sisters. More importantly, the lesson my son learnt today, I hope will stay with him forever.