Ripples of Kindness…


Dear Reader:

It never ceases to amaze me how one small act of kindness can continue long past its initial endeavor… simply through another act of kindness that  keeps the ripple going.

I shared with you, earlier, the thought that I got my new car exactly when God planned for me to get it….because if I had wheels to go places during my initial treatments it would have been far too easy, in today’s drive-thru opportunities to ‘hit’ drive-thru grocery, shopping, pharmacy, and fast -food establishments- all easily accessible to us.

Since this wasn’t an option for me and I relied on others bringing and picking up necessities  from the store and drugstore (while following doctor’s orders to stay put in the recliner with my foot elevated)…healing progressed faster than if I had been out running around.

On the positive side of life in now numerous drive-thru establishments…acts of kindness can ripple faster here than almost anywhere else.

In this short true anecdote from KindSpring…a woman shares her story about learning not to judge others by appearances.

 Yesterday, I let a very angry-looking young man pull in ahead of me at the coffee shop drive thru. I had decided that I would pay for the order of the person behind me when I was told that the “angry young-man” had paid for mine and said “Merry Christmas!” What a wonderful surprise and what a testament that appearances may be deceiving. This exercise in looking for, acknowledging, and sharing stories like these warms my heart so here’s some love to those of you reading these snippets of joy!

We are once again reminded how little it takes to change the world…in this case a cup of coffee. Of course the other powerful lesson in the story is how quickly we can judge our fellow man by appearances and be wrong.

After I read this story I started thinking about the number of times I unconsciously jump to conclusions about another person as I go through daily life…perhaps based on their looks or stature or negative personality or unkempt appearance …anything that makes me feel slightly uncomfortable around the person.

At the time it is happening I don’t even consciously realize that my thoughts are being swayed by a visual or invisible feeling about another….yet we can use both types of feelings to pass the “coffee on me today Merry Christmas” acts of kindness that reveal the true character of a person.

I started wondering what the record is for paying it forward at a fast-food chain drive-thru and found my answer. long the ripples of kindness can spread.

On Father’s Day, a regular customer at a McDonald’s in Scottsburg, Ind., started a 167-driver “pay it forward” chain of good deeds at the drive-thru window.

“She saw a dad in the van behind her … He had like four kids in the car,” McDonald’s cashier Hunter Hostetler said. “She was like, ‘I’m going to pay for the father behind me, and I want you to tell him happy Father’s Day.’”

Upon hearing of the woman’s good deed, the dad then paid for the next few cars behind him, and each car kept the process going, WDRB reported.

“I had people telling me, ‘No it’s going to stop here, it’s going to stop at 100, you’re not going to make it past,’” Hostetler said.

But, between 8:30 p.m. to midnight, every car paid for the ones behind it, Fox 8 reported.

“I saw the man in front of me talking to the cashier out in the rain, and I was wondering what was going on,” said guest 105 on how he came to know about the acts of kindness.

All total, 167 drivers “paid it forward” at the Scottsburg McDonald’s that night. Many customers even paid for meals that were more expensive than their own.

Only once did a customer threaten to break the streak, but the staff pooled $27 to keep it going, the restaurant’s manager said.

The chain of kindness only ended when the store closed for the night.

“I was proud to experience the Scottsburg community come together in this act of kindness under the Golden Arches,” said Frank Ward, owner of the Scottsburg McDonald’s, in a statement to ABC News.


So until tomorrow…Be a blessing to someone else and make their day with one small act of kindness…you never know where the ripples will end.

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh



Rutledge and Lachlan are close in age…only about a year and a half apart and luckily for them this means they are close in other ways…the best kind of ways.



Yesterday while I was half-sitting, half-lying on the sofa watching ESPN and soaking up all the news about the game…the sun broke into the den and I realized that my ‘fat Sammy’ Vickie gave me for Christmas was sitting on top of a glass block with the words “HOPE” on it that Marcia gave me and immediately the words of Emily Dickinson came rushing back….

“Hope is the thing with feathers…that perches in my soul”


About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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2 Responses to Ripples of Kindness…

  1. bcparkison says:

    How amazing that there were that many people aware of what was happening around them.


    • Becky Dingle says:

      I thought the same thing…that all those people were in tune to what was happening and with the exception of one…wanted to keep the kindness circulating….restores one’s faith in human nature….especially needed these days.

      Liked by 1 person

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