A light in the dark

Mary Clare Bean

Have you ever had a day where nothing was going right, no matter what you did to try and make it a good day? Then, out of nowhere, someone you least expected to come in contact with did something so out of the blue and so sweet that it turned your whole day around. Most of the time, they don’t even know how much this action impacted you.

These acts are the smallest but most meaningful, especially in a crazy, busy life. They happen to me all the time, whether it’s Ms. Boenker saying a Hail Mary (my favorite prayer), my grandma sending me a text or even seeing those sticky notes on the girls’ bathroom mirrors. These people probably don’t know how much they truly impact someone on a day to day basis. The daily “drink water” reminder on those sticky notes really brings me back into reality some days by centering myself and taking a moment to breathe. 

Kind acts don’t have to be super extravagant like some people think, like a boy getting them flowers when they’re feeling down or a friend surprising them with their favorite food or drink. On the other hand, some might think that those tiny, little acts won’t do much at all or that a person must be incredibly special to turn someone’s life around. How can a single wave or just saying “hi” change the entire course of one’s day? Sometimes, life can seem too difficult to fix with just a kind word or compliment. However, that doesn’t mean your day can’t be made better, at least incrementally. Even if it’s a small thing, it can help and a bunch of small things from someone can change the day. And anyone can be “someone.” Don’t doubt your impact on someone’s life by doing a small action. 

I am challenging both myself, and whoever is reading this, to be that person who makes someone’s day better without knowing it. Go out of your way to talk to someone   you haven’t talked to in awhile, invite someone to sit at your lunch table, maybe even invite them to hang out with you and your friends, add a sticky note to the bathroom mirrors or just say “hi” to someone in the hallways. These simple actions can be a light in someone’s day and you may not even know how. This year, especially, mental health has really been important. We went months without seeing anyone, just constantly being by ourselves, and it wasn’t easy. You know how much those things people did then and do for you now mean to you, so why not share a little extra kindness in the world in return?