kindness activist

kindness activist

Friday, September 9, 2016

Wallet Kindness

This story is a good one, because we can all relate to it.  It is about losing something IMPORTANT. We have all done that, no??  (My most recent example is leaving my entire purse in the bleachers at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington Cemetery, and not noticing I was missing it until we walked waaaay down a BIG hill.  Lucky for me I was with 2 knights in shining armor, Jordan and Zach, who literally RAN up the hill and retrieved my purse (which was perfectly intact!).  Like I said, we can all relate to LOSING SOMETHING IMPORTANT.  But isn’t it simply lovely when that loss turns into something positive?

That’s what happened to my nephew’s wife Lyndsey.  The other day she posted this on Facebook:

"There are good people in the world. Today I lost my wallet at Village Pointe mall. A good person
found my it. She opened it only to find my name.  She looked me up on Facebook and
messaged me to let me know she had found it. She even offered to bring it to me when I
called her! Instead we met in a grocery store parking lot. I am so grateful for good people

Well I don’t know about you, but when I read something like that my first thought is:  THAT WALLET RETURNING WOMAN MUST BE OFFICIALLY NAMED A KINDNESS ACTIVIST!!!  So I set about getting both women’s sides of what happened with the CASE OF THE LOST WALLET.

Nate, Lyndsey, and Ryker
Lyndsey is mom to son Ryker, who just turned 1.  Ever since Ryker was born, she has used his diaper bag to hold her wallet instead of a purse.  They were shopping the other day and the little dude was fussing and ready to leave Old Navy.  Lyndsey set her wallet on top of the visor part of his stroller, put Ryker in his car seat, and folded up the stroller without thinking that her wallet (and sunglasses) were perched on top of the visor!  The wallet and glasses fell off and landed in the parking lot, and off Lyndsey and Ryker drove…

It wasn’t until after naptime and a trip to the grocery store that she noticed she didn’t have her wallet…  Nothing like needing to pay for groceries and frantically hunting for a wallet that is non-existent, eh?  She rushed out to her car to hunt for it, but of course it wasn’t there.

Lyndsey told me, “I knew it was gone, I panicked and frantically searched through my car, the diaper bag... I even decided to leave my groceries at the store after I told them I would be right back!  I drove back to the shopping mall while calling stores I had been to, to see if anyone had turned it in. No luck.  Then I drove back to the apartment and rummaged through all the rooms with no luck.”

The mysterious missing wallet...
We have ALL had this experience, right??  Just last night I hunted EVERYWHERE for a missing coupon.  I know it is in the house somewhere, but I can’t find it!!  Grrrr…

When Lyndsey was leaving home, she noticed that someone she didn’t know had sent her a Facebook message.   She had seen it pop in earlier but was driving so ignored it (and then forgot about it).  She cancelled some of her credit cards, then remembered - THE FACEBOOK MESSAGE

She opened it and it turns out it was, as she put it, “The most beautiful message I have read!”

Tiffany, a very kind woman, had tried to locate the owner of the wallet immediately after finding it. It turns out that Tiffany was driving around waiting for her aunt and uncle to come out of a store. She parked, waited, then drove around a bit. When she saw the wallet, she said, "I had a gut feeling to grab it, but for a split second I thought not to... Because what would happen if someone thought I stole it?".

Tiffany, the WALLET FINDER!!!
Lucky for Lyndsey, Tiffany went with her gut and picked it up. She peeked inside ONLY at the license to learn the owner's name so she could try and find her on Facebook. And find her she did!
I asked Tiffany WHY she decided to return the wallet. I mean, some people would have just left it lying there. Others would have dropped if off in a nearby store and let the clerks worry about it. And still others would have kept it! But Tiffany went to the trouble of tracking down the owner. Why?? "I returned it because that is what I would hope someone would do for me," she said. "I have an amazing family and friends that have shown me so much kindness and love, especially when I lost my husband last year. So I try and pay it forward."
Well Tiffany, you paid it forward indeed.  When Lyndsey got in touch and you found out that she was a long drive away you even offered to DELIVER the wallet to her!  That, my dear, is above and beyond the call of Kindness Activist duty!!!  :)

Lyndsey's HERO Tiffany
The two women met up in a grocery store parking lot and Lyndsey almost started crying when she got her sunglasses and wallet back.  She told Tiffany that she was “Her hero” and thanked her for her kindness with a Starbuck’s giftcard. 
This story shows so many things:  Tiffany didn’t know that the lost wallet was important not just because of the credit cards and money inside, but because the wallet itself was a treasured gift from Lyndsey’s husband.  And Lyndsey had no way of knowing that Tiffany, her hero, had herself had a really tough time with her husband’s recent passing.  I am guessing that Tiffany was happy to be in the role of GIVER of kindness in this instance after being a RECIPIENT of so much kindness and support over the past year.
Tiffany summed it up best by saying: “If we had more kind people, this world would be a better place.  I think people forget to be kind and treat people the way they want to be treated!”.
Oh, and Lyndsey has treated herself to what she calls a new "wallet holder" (aka purse) in celebration of her returned wallet (and of learning an important lesson about being careful where you put your wallet!).

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