Today is Mr. Rogers’ birthday, and I do my best every year to make it a day of kindness. I write a check or go online to make a donation to a charity. I let people cut in front of me in traffic. I pick at least ten random people I interact with in a day and tell them how good they look or how good they are at their job or just how much I admire them.
And you know the funny thing? I feel so good after doing all this, I find myself doing a lot more of it the rest of the year, too.
I was recently going through some old blog posts on my parenting blog, and I came across one entry, written on the very day I received my book contract in the mail to sign. This was a moment I had been waiting for for years. A high point in my life. And just a few minutes after I opening that envelope, I came across someone who was experiencing one of her lowest points.
I did something nice for her, but I’m not telling this story to toot my own horn. I’m telling it because we all need to remember that for every great day out there, someone else is having a not-so-great day. Or a run of those days. And they may not even be exhibiting any outward signs to let anyone know that. A smile, a kind word, a kind gesture, can be a balm to that hurting soul, a boost for their step, or even just a reminder that people can be kind.
So be kind today, for Mr. Rogers, and for yourself. And then do it again tomorrow, and the days after that.