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Neurodiversity Awareness/Appreciation

Neurodiversity Awareness/Appreciation

Friday, November 13, 2015

Are You Kind?

Today is World Kindness Day! This is not to be confused with Random Acts Of Kindness Day. World Kindness Day is part of the World Kindness Movement, which was a collaboration of kindness organizations from all over the world. Australia's World Kindness Day website describes it as, "The purpose of World Kindness Day is to look beyond ourselves, beyond the boundaries of our country, beyond our culture, our race, our religion; and realise we are citizens of the world"

There are a ton of lists of ideas of things you can do to celebrate World Kindness Day or other similar days. I was going to write a post like that, but I decided not to. Instead, I am going to write about a kind person I know. 

I have met lots of kind people since I moved out here. One of them is Phyllis, who is my Auntie Em's and Uncle J's friend. Every Friday a group of people walk their dogs together, including us, so that is how I got to know her.  I got to know her even better when I went to her house so she could cut my hair. She is a hairstylist and has a little studio in a room of her garage. I really hate going to "beauty shops" to get my hair cut. I just hate the strong smells and the sounds and all of the really fashionable "cool" people and being forced to make small talk and having random people touching my head. When I lived in Chicago I usually just asked my mom to cut my hair. But after a few months of living out here, it was starting to get shaggy again! 

When Phyllis cut my hair, I didn't mind it at all because I already knew her, so it wasn't like having a stranger washing my hair and cutting it and trying to talk to me. Also, my aunt and I were the only people there, so there was not a lot of noise or strong smells. And of course there is the fact that Phyllis's dog, Buddy, was there! Buddy and me are always happy to see each other! I have to give him about five million hugs before I can even sit down in the hair-cutting chair. 

When I first got my fish, Clark, and before I got Lewis, my aunt and uncle and I were all going to Chicago. We had to try to arrange people to watch all of our pets, except for Lily because she goes everywhere with me. First we had asked another friend, who was already watching our dog Roo, to watch the fish, and she sort of said okay but was not too enthused about it. So we asked Phyllis. She agreed to watch my fish, and she took the job very seriously!

Since I had just gotten Clark a week or two earlier, from the county fair, and since county fair fish are known for not living very long, Phyllis was really worried that my fish would die on her watch. I told her it wouldn't be her fault if he died. My aunt told her to just flush Clark down the toilet if he died, but I said, "Nooooooooooo don't flush Clark!" So Phyllis said that, in the event of Clark's untimely death, she would keep his body for me, and when I arrived back in Washington we would give him a proper burial under a rose bush. 

 She even made sure Clark sent me emails every few days so that I would know that he was still okay! I will never be sure how she worked it out for a fish to use the computer, because if the fish gets out of the water he will die, but if the computer gets in the water it will die! This is why fish don't usually send emails! But Clark and Phyllis used teamwork, I guess.

One day while I was still in Chicago, the power went out. Clark was in a much smaller tank back then, but it had a "bubbler" that was always sending oxygen into the water. (If you ever get a fish from the county fair, you should make sure he has the things fish need. A bubbler is an important addition. Lack of oxygen is one reason why fish don't survive for long in fish bowls!) Phyllis was worried that Clark might not be able to survive without his bubbler until the power came back on. She knew someone who owned a dress shop in town, where they still had power, so she decided to bring Clark there. She drove into town, parked, and walked down the street (where a busy street fest happened to be going on) with Clark in his little tank, water splashing everywhere! The people at the dress shop let her plug Clark's tank in, and he got to spend the day at the dress shop. It was a big adventure, for a fish! I'm not sure I know anyone else who would have gone through so much trouble to show kindness to a goldfish! 

Phyllis is always nice to me and tries to encourage me. She came over to our house a few days before Halloween, for dinner, and she brought me a gigantic, 32 ounce container of Mod Podge! She also gave me a box that has a buckle on it and says encouraging words on it. I haven't decided what to put in the box yet, because I wanted to put something good in it and not just use it for junk. She also gave me a bracelet once, and also a little stone fish that I hooked onto my backpack. It is very smooth and shiny, and I am always fiddling with it whenever my backpack is next to me or on my lap, such as when I am riding the Max. Whenever I see it, I think of her!

Phyllis is the kindest person I know. Who is the kindest person you know? Remember to try to be kind, on World Kindness Day and every day!


1 comment :

  1. My grandmothers!!! they have both passed on but I think of them every day and try to emulate them.

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