#26Acts ? Not a tall act to follow!

NEWS | | December 19, 2012 at 8:59 pm

Admittedly when a fellow blogging friend Isra mentioned the #26acts of RAK (random acts of kindness) brought on by Ann Curry to focus on the positive after the Newtown shootings, I was reluctant to write. The reasons vary from me being lazy to not wanting to feel like I am riding on a sensationalistic wave brought on by a tragedy. Also? I don’t like doing anything when it is expected. It does not feel real that way. But seeing as you are reading this post, it looks like I caved in to write it. Or possibly I am procrastinating cleaning up after my husband as he paints. Whatever the reason, this cynic is writing this.

I don’t believe in a good act being something you seek out to do, I believe it is something you do repeatedly so it becomes a habit. Doing good habits repeatedly when least expected is important to become part of your character. It was why I created Mommy Niri Cares when I felt the surplus of goods sent to me was making the once poor South African girl in me cringe. It was why I have used repeatedly my social media influence to help others. It is why while I earned well as an engineer by day I volunteered at night for everything from senior citizens (yes even assisting in the bathroom) to helping abused children. It is why when at moments we struggle to make ends meet financially, I choose that moment to help others.

If money is tight, there is no reason why time need be. Kindness need not be flaunted in someone’s face like a donation waiting for a thank you. I never ever take pictures of people I am helping because I know how awkward that can be, having had to live off donated clothing when my home was burned down in political riots as a young girl. The aim is to make it not seem like a big thing. Like my neighbor who was on bedrest while pregnant, and even though my kid was a bus rider and their kid was a car rider, I delayed my daughter each day just so I could drop them both at school to give them a break. I never once told them I was doing it to help them out. I don’t need to.

My mom told me we don’t talk about doing good, we just do it. She used to have a weird sense of logic explaining to me, as she showed amount using her hand (picture “I caught a fish this big” fashion) that ” You have this much, you give this much, and you get this much!” as she made the size look bigger for each of them. I always asked if you only had this much, how do you give this much? Today? I understand. Giving more than we think we have is when we give it more than our all,.. and then some. And receiving, I finally get, is that feeling no-one can take away from you.

So I won’t go around trying to do anything special for a Random Act of Kindness, but I will go about my day continuing to strive to be a kind person I ought to be!


  1. 1

    Niri: I wish more people were like you – that just had kindness engrained. Maybe these #26Acts will make more people live like you do rather than a one-off kind of thing. Hugs.

    • 1.1
      Mommy Niri says:

      Charlene, I love that we have surrounded ourselves with kind people. We need our kids to see us as role models for hope

  2. 2

    I love what you wrote. At the same time, because we are all different, sometimes some will need a kick in da butt – a/k/a “a reason” – to act on something. Sometimes we need things in our face to be able to take action, or get some perspective.

    Interestingly, perhaps, it is said that it takes 21 days to make a habit. If someone did one act a day, 26 acts would go over that threshold. Maybe it would be the start of a love affair with every day acts of kindness.

    It also gets people talking. Talk – I would say – is always a good thing. It means people are involved in some way, and it can be the starting point for an action and/or something even greater.

    The fact that you spoke up is great. Contrasts, I think, are what keeps us thinking and analyzing, questioning and figuring out. Good for those who think differently. I think it ultimately helps us all.

    Thanks for the opportunity to share my couple of cents.

  3. 3
    Isra says:

    I totally get it. I do. You live your life to help others, You grew up learning to appreciate life and not take it for granted, I hope this movement brings about more people to not take life for granted. Thank you for writing this post, it means a lot.

  4. 4
    janet says:

    I struggled with the same feelings that I did not want to “benefit” from the horrific tragedy in Connecticut, but I truly believe in the power of random acts of kindness and pay it forward, so I guess I “caved” as well. ;)

  5. 5

    Love it. This is what I was trying to say in my post, but you articulate it so much more clearly.

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