When there is so much fear, uncertainty and unpleasantness in the media, it can be hard to see or feel compassion in our world. But it can appear in even the smallest of acts: a smile can make a huge difference to someone’s day.
I remember one day when I was going through possibly the most challenging time in my life, I was walking up to the shopping centre and as I walked through, a woman held the door open and smiled at me. I have no idea who she was and I have never seen her since. I had been head down lost in some very gloomy thoughts and her smile brought me out of that and reminded me that the world wasn’t such a bad place. That woman probably didn’t think twice about what she had done, but it changed my day and I will always be hugely grateful to her for that.
On social media, often pilloried for it’s negativity, I see people looking to thank a stranger who helped their day. Sometimes for helping out when someone fell ill; sometimes for stepping in when a child went into meltdown and the parent received support and appreciation for the difficult job they were doing rather than judgement; sometimes a treasured pet gone missing; sometimes a wild animal found injured. So much compassion is demonstrated in these stories and it’s happening around us all the time. Just sometimes you have to look up and notice.
Jo Higson, 30th August 2019