Month: December 2021

The Cost by Lois Hewitt

What does it cost to say a kind word or to refrain from saying an unkind one?

What does it cost to allow another person their opinion?

What does it cost to hold the door, put your grocery cart away, or to do any number of small things done in civilized society?

What does it cost to offer a prayer for someone in need?

What does it cost to fully listen to someone without thinking about what you will say next?

What does it cost to say an encouraging word or show support to a fellow human being?

What does it cost to be kind? The cost of empathy? The cost of understanding?

Nothing. Most kindnesses do not cost anything. Yet they can bring about positive change.

Kindness does cost time. Some say time is money. In my opinion, if you are looking for a huge return on your investment of time, being kind is the best investment you can make. Dividends are not guaranteed nor are they immediately seen, but a life lived with kindness is a joy.

I have written a lot about simple acts of kindness. The further away we get from that in our society, the more self-centered we become, the more we need to step back and reevaluate ourselves.

Believe me, I know how easy it is to wall yourself up and cast all others away. I am an introverted introvert at best. Other people scare me and make me want to ignore them. I have to force myself to be kind and when I am my heart soars.

So worth it is to help someone else. The gesture need not be large or costly, it just needs to be genuine. My sense of self-preservation makes being kind something I have to think about. It is in my nature but I have suppressed it in lieu of fear long enough.

I’m broke but I can still be kind. I’m afraid but I can still be kind. I’m in a hurry but I can still be kind. I want to be the person who cheerleads for someone else. Who say congratulations. Who says thank you! Who says I’ll pray for you!

Kindness is the great equalizer. It crosses all boundaries and it costs nothing. But it can change lifes.

Safety Net by Lois Hewitt

The last couple of weeks have been truly eye opening for me. Before I start I want to reiterate that my blessings overflow. From where I came from, the bad decisions I made now to know I know I am blessed. My eyes have seen life without a safety net. It has been concerning.

I have been ill for a few weeks now. Doing much better though. But I put off a trip to Urgent Care because the car payment was due. I tried over the counter things but to no avail. I ended up getting checked out but should have done it sooner.

Not having health insurance for the last eight years or so weighs heavy on every decision that comes to health. Asking around I found that this situation is much more prevalent then I knew. Going to the doctor with a prescription or two can cost a couple of hundred dollars.

How many people have an emergency fund for such things and how many people are one car breakdown or appliance failure away from disaster? My savings has a long time balance of $5.00. I want and plan to save more but find it much more difficult than I imagined.

Please know I am not complaining. Having lost everything a few years ago has made me appreciate all that I have. But the reality is a truth. Many of us live without any sort of safety net. Being sick facilitated a few extra bills and a loss of a weeks paycheck…which can be recovered from. What if I had to go to the hospital. What if I had missed weeks from work. What then.

Now I absolutely do not expect the government or employer to take this to task. No handouts wanted. Most of the people I know in a similar position agree. The reality is harsh at best. I tend to think about all the possibilities when things are going smoothly. I have been around long enough to know those times don’t last.

You may think this is absolutely insane but I do think this way. If I had said safety net…how would I act differently? I would then rely on myself and my resources to take care of my needs. I may even take the simple things for granted because I have it covered.

With no safety net, I generally take nothing for granted. I’m thankful every week that I can buy healthy food. I’m thankful for my very small but efficient wardrobe. I’m thankful for a roof over my head and heat in the winter and comfy blankets and warm socks and hot cocoa (you can tell it’s winter) and all the things I have. I thank God every day for providing these things. He also gives me a place to put my fear and anxiety.

I would be lying if in the dark of night I didn’t pray for a little lottery winning or some sort of windfall. Those are few and far between. I do then pray for those of our society who struggle more than me. I am one of the lucky ones. Then I pray that I can get by. I have learned to not need much or even want much.

The hidden blessing for me is my gratitude levels have skyrocketed. I’m grateful for every paycheck. I’m grateful that there is a place that I can go when I’m sick and they care for me. I’m thankful for my landlords who care for me too. The list could go on for days.

I went from having a house and stuff and never being satisfied to losing said house and stuff and starting over from scratch in my 50s and being totally grateful. I say this only for myself, happy without is so much better than unhappy with.

I’m still going to try to save a little bit more but for now I’m doing my best. I can’t do more than that. Be grateful today…it changes your perspective. I pray for all of us living on the edge without a safety net. My you all have comfort today.