‘Last night I was a mama alone in the ER with my sick baby. As my feverish child sobbed, I paced the waiting room. There was panic across faces.’

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“Last night I was a mama alone in the ER with my sick baby.

Surrounded by a sea of ill and injured and worried folks from all walks of life.

There was panic across some faces, defeat across others, and some – all – just wanted to be home, wrapped in the warm embrace of their bed and a loved one.

As my baby, red faced and feverish sobbed, I paced the waiting room.

I shushed and patted his bum, rubbed his back and kissed his head while locking eyes with those around me.

The feeling in the room somber, being in the emergency room the day after Christmas and all.

Beside me sat a mom, who’s fifteen year old daughter suffered an allergic reaction.

As her daughter laid her head upon her, she brought out her phone, down to the last bit of juice, and played Christmas carols for my sick and fussing baby.

The couple across from me looked at me with sympathetic eyes. Noting they wished the nurses made my sweet baby a priority before everyone else.

And there were the rough and rugged soccer players, who offered to share their pizza with the baby boy in my arms. Who smiled at him and waved. Despite painfully torn up knees and elbows.

It seemed to me in that moment that a baby in my arms extended an open invitation for kindness.

People smiled at me, people looked at me sympathetically, people helped me.

While my husband was home caring for our two-year-old, I was a mama alone with a baby in the ER.

But as I would learn, I wasn’t actually alone.

People had other places they wanted to be.

People had thoughts racing through their minds and hearts.

Yet, people extended kindness to a stranger with a baby.

People had it in them to show the softer side of their hearts, even in moments of need.

Be the person who helps.

Be the person who smiles.

Be the person who is kind to others in moments where it’s hard to find kindness.

Be the person who makes others feel surrounded in the loneliest times.

Be the person who knows in their heart that we’re all just human.

Illness and injury, grief and worry, can eat you up and spit you out.

But my goodness what a difference it makes when a stranger is kind.

Be the person that is kind – and not just to the person with a baby.

Smile at someone today.

Be patient with someone today.

Tell someone they’re doing great today.

Hold a door. Call a friend. Pay a compliment.

Say thank you.

Ask someone if they need a hand.

Offer a hug.

Be the person that is kind, for kindness is always an open invitation.”

Annie Lawton

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Annie Lawton of Grown Up Glamour by Anneliese Lawton. Follow her on Instagram here. The article originally appeared here.  Submit your story here, and be sure to subscribe to our best love stories here.

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