The Smallest Kindness
It was the smallest kindness that saved me. In 2007, about to graduate college, I exploded. A man, who told me he loved me, and my best friend, had fallen into bed together. Neither accepted responsibility, both tossed the blame around like a hot potato. Just two days prior to the discovery of the two of them snuggled in bed; I received a scary call from the doctor. They needed to operate, and I was terrified. I did not share my pain, I held it, like sandpaper on my soul. Their betrayal coupled with a medical situation left me feeling like a balloon without a string. I felt lonely, desperate, and untied.
My minor in college was Religious Studies and one of the leaders we were studying resonated with me. He was a Christian, a man who was accepting of a variety of alternative lifestyles that most mainstream Christianity was not. The reasoning behind his acceptance? He said he could not imagine a God who was unloving, and he could not imagine a God who did not accept people exactly as He created them. Inspired, I wrote his secretary an e-mail (I could not find his online), telling him my personal pain, thanking him for his sweetness.
I did not expect him to even get the e-mail, let alone respond. He did. He thanked me. He told me my kindness inspired him and that he hoped we could meet one day.
That was all I needed. His peace gave me some. He reminded me that I am in fact allowed to misjudge, to make mistakes, and that I should allow myself the grace to forgive my own humanity. I do not know where he is anymore, but I hope this story finds him. That would be my miracle—I pray he knows what he did. This stranger’s kindness allowed me to breathe in, and carry on.