I shared a few weeks ago about an experience I had at the grocery store. Earlier that morning, I had courageously (moronically?) ventured out with Chica and Bug to go grocery shopping.
I know, I know.
Why? WHY!? Why do I subject myself to this torture week after week? Why don't I just go in the afternoon when Hubby gets home or at night when the girls are asleep? I used to love grocery shopping. Yes. I just used "love" and "grocery shopping" in the same sentence. I used to go out Sunday evenings, when most people were nestled on their couches watching their Sunday Primetime shows. Grocery shopping on Sunday evenings is glorious, because the store is quiet and unencumbered. I can pop my iPod in while I lazily go over my grocery list and comparison shop at my leisure.
It's almost like vacation.
But as the way life has maneuvered, we are usually completely empty of food by Mondays, and if I want to get the remote semblance of a meal on the table that evening, it requires a Monday morning grocery shopping trip. With the girls. And the experience usually falls somewhere in the range of "Punishment" and "Seventh Ring of Hell."
Bug, although not quite 2 years old, hates riding in the cart. For my own sanity, we've worked out a compromise where she and Chica ride in a Car Cart (you know, those monstrosity hybrids that are half toy, half grocery cart, 100% freak show?). Time is ticking once the shopping starts before a fight or tantrum erupts, so I wield that Car Cart like it's nobodies business. The kids are loaded up with snacks and I do my best to shop smartly while getting every item on the list.
All bets are off if the delicatessen does not offer the girls a slice of cheese.
So it was one of those weeks where all 3 of us were crying or near tears. I had survived the actual grocery shopping, paid and walked out to the car. I'm sure we were quite a sight (perhaps people know my weekly routine and purposely come to the grocery store on Monday mornings just to watch and judge me).
I loaded the groceries into the trunk and was in the process of loading the girls in the car. As I turned to walk the cart back to the corral, I was greeted by a woman around my age. She was smiling and had her hand on my cart. She said, "I don't have my little ones with me today, so can I take your cart back for you? I know it's a lot to juggle."
I could have kissed her.
But a thank you and smile sufficed as she turned around and walked our carts to the corral.
It made me realize that as much as we need to be the recipients of random acts of kindness, we also need to be the doers of random acts of kindness. Especially for moms! How many times have you been out and about, and witnessed a mom trying to discreetly deal with a tantrum-ing toddler or a rowdy group of young kids while grocery shopping? How many moms do you know are quietly treading parenting water but can barely keep their heads up?
We need to love on those moms.
So I started challenging the readers on my Facebook page to commit Random Acts of Kindness for other moms. Maybe it's a hand written note of encouragement or buying the mom behind you a coffee in the Starbucks line. Maybe it's distracting the wiggly kids of the woman paying at the cashier or just a knowing hand on her shoulder with the words, "You are doing a great job. Hang in there."
This week, I'm challenging you all: show a Random Act of Kindness to a Mom. Maybe someone you know, maybe a stranger. But be the blessing in her day, be the restoration of hope in her life.
I'm joining Barb from A Life in Balance in hosting the Motivation Monday Blog Carnival. Barb focuses on health-related motivations, and I am focusing on lifestyle/heart motivations. Each week I'll share a post about being motivated to be a better woman: health and fitness, motherhood/parenting, relationships and changing your community.
I want to motivate and be motivated - so let's inspire each other!
I hope you'll join us as well!
If you'd like to share your Motivation Monday post, you can link up below! It can be anything about motivating yourself or others: a new healthy recipe or fitness regime, a new hobby or something you learned about parenting, revelations you had about you job or marriage. Whatever it is, write it up and share it below. :)