One Mom’s Journey from Fat to Skinny to Confident

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Inspired by #26Acts

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If you are active on twitter or Facebook at all you may have see the #26Acts hashtag floating around. Here’s a except from a story on NBCnews.com about how Ann Curry started this movement…

After the experience in Newtown. I thought, “What if? Imagine if everyone could commit to doing one act of kindness for every one of those children killed in Newtown.” So that’s what I tweeted. And guess what? People committed. I said in my tweet, “I’m in. RT if you’re in.” Not only did they commit to 20 acts of kindness, they wanted to up it to 26 acts of kindness for every child and adult who was lost at the school. Some even debated maybe we should include the mother, who died, at 27 acts. Some debated maybe we should include the killer as well as he was struggling and in pain.

What’s really remarkable to me is how many people responded. They are the ones who carried the ball. They are the ones who chose what to do. People would tweet back, “I’ve done two!” “I bought coffee for a guy in line!” “I bought toys for homeless children!” “I’ve got 18 more to go!” or “24 more to go!” – whatever number they were trying to reach.

I’ve been loosely following the story and smiled every time I’d see #26Acts fly by in my twitter feed. Little did I know my friend Carrie was running all over town committing random acts of kindness with her family! Here are the photos she shared on instagram these last few days…

Paying the parking fee for the person behind me at the hospital #26acts

#2 – leaving a $5 off coupon at BBB for the next person that doesn’t have one #26acts

#3 – leaving quarters in the candy/toy machines at Toys R Us :) #26acts

#4 – leaving this on the bathroom mirror at Babies-r- Us #26acts

#5 – Leaving a treat from trader joes on a car in the parking lot #26acts

#6 – leaving fresh cut flowers on another car #26acts

#7 – leaving this note in the book ‘what to expect when you are expecting’ at Barnes and Nobel for a new mom to find #26acts

#8 – Leaving this note in a copy of Women’s Health at Barnes and Nobel #26acts

#9 – chocolate for our mail lady :) – #26acts

#10 – bought coffee for the person behind me in the drive thru at Starbucks #26acts

#11 – buying a random families warm Choctaw chip cookies from Chick-Fil-A #26acts

#12 – a chick-Fil-a card left on a car at my daughters school #26acts

#13 – left 2 lottery tickets on a gas pump – #26acts

#14 – My wonderful husband payed for the toll for person behind him on the way to work this morning #26acts

#15 – bags of gooidies for the local animal shelter in memory of Charlotte Bacon who wanted to be a vet when she grew up – she loved animals #26acts

#16 – Donated some books to our local library – #26acts

#17 – Goodies for the teachers at our local elementary school – cupcakes, cookies and chocolate covered pretzels for the last day of school before break :) – #26acts

#18 – Walmart Gift Card left on a random car – #26acts

#19 – I walked into our local post office with my girls and bought a book of stamps then I told the clerk to please keep them and give them to the next person who came in to buy stamps and have her the note. She was the first person whom I have been able to see a reaction from since starting this journey and she looked at the letter and smiled and said thanks. And my girls said Merry Christmas and we left… :) – #26acts

#20 – Left a bottle of power aid and chex mix for our UPS guy a he has been coming almost every day and I’m sure could use a snack and drink for all of his hard work this time of year – #26acts

#21 – Jimmy swung by a laundry mat on his way to work this morning and handed the note and quarters to a lady doing her laundry – #26acts

#22 – my husband works across the street from a woman’s shelter – their website said they needed baby cleaning items, sugar and powdered drink mix. We have them 2 boxes full – #26acts

#23 – my husband was to stop by the grocery store on his way home from work and buy a gift card and plant it in the store for someone to find. As he was in line at the store a little old lady was in front of him. He said she had 2 pie crusts and a gallon of milk and was fishing thru her purse for change to pay. So he signaled to the clerk to add her order to his – to which she asked if it was ok with the lady, she said yes and Jimmy handed her the note…she read it and turned and gave him a huge hug. Mission accomplished. He can home and told me with tears in his eyes and said ‘can we do more of this?’ And we both agreed we would. #26acts

#24 – I wrote out a handful of our Christmas cards and we dropped them off to a Senior Center – so those who don’t have families or get mail at the holidays would at least have one card to open – #26acts

#25 – My youngest and I took cupcakes, cookies and peanut brittle to our local sheriffs office this morning. She has been talking about the nice police woman ever since :) – #26acts

#26 – This one won’t be completed until tomorrow night – but we are stopping by our local pizza place and paying for the next persons carry out order and sticking this note on their pizza box – #26acts – has bee so rewarding and so humbling. Will def do this more often.

I have no words. I’m more than inspired. I’m in awe of her and all that have taken this idea and put it into action.

You may think something as simple as paying for a cup of coffee or leaving a coupon behind (something I learned to do from my mom) won’t make a difference but I think it does. I think it makes the most important difference, to us.

To put the world right in order, we must first put the nation in order; to put the nation in order, we must first put the family in order; to put the family in order, we must first cultivate our personal life; we must first set our hearts right.  ~Confucius

There are times I feel completely hopeless, powerless, defeated. I don’t know what to do. How to help.

“We can choose to be affected by the world or we can choose to affect the world. ” -Heidi Wills – Author

Can I affect the world?

Do I even have the courage to try?

“Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can,
As long as ever you can.”
― Debbie Macomber,

Even if for just one person. Will it matter?

“Once upon a time, there was a wise man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work.

One day, as he was walking along the shore, he looked down the beach and saw a human figure moving like a dancer. He smiled to himself at the thought of someone who would dance to the day, and so, he walked faster to catch up.

As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young man, and that what he was doing was not dancing at all. The young man was reaching down to the shore, picking up small objects, and throwing them into the ocean.

He came closer still and called out "Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?"

The young man paused, looked up, and replied "Throwing starfish into the ocean."

"I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?" asked the somewhat startled wise man.

To this, the young man replied, "The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don’t throw them in, they’ll die."

Upon hearing this, the wise man commented, "But, young man, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile? You can’t possibly make a difference!"

At this, the young man bent down, picked up yet another starfish, and threw it into the ocean. As it met the water, he said,
"It made a difference for that one.”
― Loren Eiseley

I think it does.



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Discussion

There are 18 comments so far.

    Lisa M.

    December 22, 2012

    Wow, I read that thru tears…so powerful!

    HeyBeckyJ

    December 22, 2012

    I had not heard about the #26Acts movement, so thank you so much for sharing. This is truly inspirational. Being on the receiving end of a random act of kindness (whether intentional or not) has an amazing way of restoring faith in humanity and remind me that most people are good. And after the events of Newtown, isn’t that what we really need? Just to be reminded that there is so much more good out there than there is bad.

    Ann

    December 23, 2012

    Tears streaming….thank you for sharing. I had not heard about this before now. Me, my husband and my sister in law were all recipients of several “random acts of kindness” that helped our family through the holidays a few years ago….the smallest gesture can mean so much!

    Amy@spotonwellness

    December 23, 2012

    This is SUCH a great story, Roni. I am inspired. I can tell you… I paid for someone’s sub at Subway a couple weeks ago and I was shaking with excitement when I told them I paid for it and Merry Christmas. I hope this #26acts will carry on LONG after the holidays are over. I know for me, I am inspired to make it a priority to do in the new year because, after reading this story/post, I will never be the same :) Merry Christmas!!

    Jenn Schmiel Zschunke

    December 23, 2012

    Amazing

    Denise

    December 23, 2012

    Roni, I read your posts daily through my email. I’ve never come to comment but today I had to. Your post touched me. Your friend touched me. How AWESOME at the joy she’s spread. Just small ways and in doing things I had never even thought of. Thank you for sharing her story with us and the #26Acts. I still have tears in my eyes as I read this knowing there ARE still good people. Thank you for being one and celebrating another. God Bless You!

    Michelle Kuah

    December 23, 2012

    I feel so grateful and blessed to have read this post. Thanks so much for sharing! Merry Christmas and I agree with Amy, I hope #26acts can be more than just a holiday trend!

    Hit The Road Jane

    December 23, 2012

    this is beautiful!! I love how she wrote a note and dedicated each act to a specific victim of Sandy Hook.

    christieo

    December 23, 2012

    Beautiful post Roni, brought tears to my eyes! I absolutely do think that one person can make a difference. One person makes a difference to another who makes a difference to another. If there is no one to start it, what then?

    Erin

    December 23, 2012

    I did hear of this and LOVE it!! You and your friend have inspired me…off to make a list of what I can do! Merry Christmas Roni! :-}

    Big Girl Bombshell

    December 23, 2012

    Agreed! It does… This is a LARGE part of my life…..Random acts that actually aren’t random……they are planned for every.single.month often every day… It’s my golden rule……We ALL should try to make this a permanent routine to living life….Happiest of Holidays to you and yours…….
    P.S. You DO do this….with EVERY post, tweet, FB post, with Blog to Lose, Fitbloggin, etc….YOU give SO MUCH to all of us that get the gift of you sharing!

    Paula

    December 23, 2012

    Great post. If we could stop human cruelty tragedy like Newtown might become a thing of the past.

    Laurie

    December 23, 2012

    I started doing the same thing but family I was with this weekend felt it was wrong to be tying it to the name of one of the victims so I stopped. I think I will continue without handing out the sheet with the victims names….I paid for coffee twice for the person behind me at the drive thru. gave a candy bar to a homeless person begging at an intersection, gave chocolate bars to the people at the toll booth, gave a “Kind” bar to the car behind me when we sat in traffic for two hours Friday night due to an accident and gave chocolate bars to 3 elderly women who were sitting and having coffee. Made me feel so good and then I stopped because my family thought I was creepy. Poo poo on them, I will continue.

      Aleisha

      December 24, 2012

      Laurie, Don’t let them affect how good you felt. I see no problem with leaving the notes with the victims’ names… it’s no different that a gift made “In memorium” at church or to a charity. And I can’t help but be annoyed with your relatives who take something so beautiful that you did and find something to gripe about. Sheesh. When I worked for a non-profit, I found the people who bitched and moaned the most about charities and such were people who didn’t have a charitable bone in their bodies and were simply trying to assuage their own guilt. I think you are FABULOUS. I think the parents of the victims would find this extremely touching and thoughtful. Merry Christmas!

    Michelle

    December 24, 2012

    I’ve never commented on a blog but I was so inspired! After reading your post this morning, I made a couple stops today and I have about 9 more random acts to complete! Such a cool idea! I’m going to post all the photos tomorrow on Facebook and hope to inspire others!

    Lisa

    December 24, 2012

    This may be my first comment but like so many others I am inspired to act and started with my acts this morning hoping to finish all by tomorrow :)

    Kimberley Pierce

    December 26, 2012

    No words. Tears running down my face. Your friend is awesome and I’ve been so inspired to do this myself. I have seen this on my Twitter feed and wanted to join in but thought I was too busy to begin…with Christmas, travel, visiting family. Why the excuses I am asking myself. I’m starting today. Your friend is awesome and I thank you for sharing her #26acts and spreading the warmth.

    Amanda Melby

    December 31, 2012

    Tears of thankfulness are streaming down my face. The world could truly use more people like you. Thank you for being an amazing human.