When I was in the grip of everything (and by everything I mean newborn triplets, a hideous break up and a breast cancer diagnosis) I found myself on the receiving end of some truly incredible acts of kindness.
There’s nothing like coming home from a heavy dose of chemotherapy and finding a just cooked chicken pie on the doorstep to remind you of just how incredible people can be. As if I needed reminding. Or answering the door on a wet Sunday afternoon to see a former employer standing there holding a brown envelope filled with funds to help pay for much needed childcare – the result of an office whip round at a company I’d worked for very briefly several years before.
Life was so full of extremes at that time. Most of them completely undesirable and so I found myself craving nothing other than a mundane, boring existence and would observe other people’s seemingly slow and steady lives in awe, wondering what the hell had happened to mine.
But that was then. Two years on and I still have as much emotional support as I need. I still feel beyond blessed when I think of the team of angels that surrounded me on my darkest days and the core group that continue to stick by me still. And now, lucky lucky me, the crisis seems to be over. Life has moved on and although there is still the occasional bump on the road at least I can say that most of the unwanted drama has subsided. Most of it…
People still continue to astound me, however. A few days ago, just before I embarked on the SHINE marathon walk, I was handed an envelope. A lovely friend, but one I don’t see nearly enough of, drove to my house with the intention of posting it through my door unseen. She was spotted. We hugged, chatted briefly, she mumbled something along the lines of ‘treat yourself’ and then was gone and I was left, envelope in hand and smile on my face.
I set off in the car to pick Jake up from school with Ella, Louis and Theo killing each other in the back and as we sat at the traffic lights I opened the envelope. Inside was a voucher to be used at an exclusive beauty salon in the heart of Knightsbridge. But not just any voucher. The amount gifted was in three figures and I did a double, then triple take as I looked at the shiny card and read the words, ‘A little something for after your walk…’
People are just so bloody lovely. I sent, via text, an effusive if woefully inadequate message of thanks to my gorgeous friend and wondered quite what I’d done in a past life to deserve such a random act of loveliness.
The walk came and went. Twenty six miles in eight and a half hours. We crossed the finishing line as the sun came up on Sunday morning and a few hours later I enjoyed the best hot bath of my life.
Two days after that I hobbled and limped, voucher in hand, to be indulged and pampered by the same hands that smooth away the fine lines of every international A-Lister going. Pure bliss.
Random acts of kindness really are the best kind. Think it’s about time I started dishing out a few of my own…