The ripple effect of kindness

Some days we ask ourselves, what is it that we care for? What is it that keeps us going? Can we make a difference? Today’s story tells us that we can …

As you may know, the area I live at is experiencing tremendous flooding. A combination of rain season, climate change and La Niña; it is one of those Bingo cards you rather don’t see filled in. 

A Bingo card you rather don’t fill in

Over the past days our surroundings got submerged by an endless stream of rain. Some towns got completely flooded and cut off. Other towns partly. Houses, streets, cars, and worse of all, lives, were taken by the water. Flash flooding, the kind of flooding you never want to come across, if any. 

Today, finally, the rain took a break. For three days it is predicted not to rain, then it might start all over again. 

But today the sun was out, and so were the people and the animals. The kangaroos shaking the rain of their fur, and the birds spreading their wings, drying in the sun. Let there be light, by all its meanings. 

I walked along the trail that had been submerged by water the last days, where the fields, forests and paths had all joined forces to form a temporary lake. I understand now why they call this a catchment area.

Over the course of the day, most water finds its way back to the rivers and the lakes, the confined areas, leaving grass and forests soaked, but recognisable. Like the kangaroos and the birds, drying in the sun. 

Something hasn’t find its way back

However, there’s something on the pavement that hasn’t find its way back to the river. First, I see one, then another. They must be siblings. Baby siblings, freshly out of the egg, finding their way back home, wherever home might be. 

The river must have left without them, because here they sit, moving in slow-motion, with their newborn legs not made for the pavement, their eyes not made for the bright sun. I’ll get closer to see what I can do for them, their eyes meet mines, and my heart fills up with compassion and love. 

What can I do to help them? 

I find a huge leave and shuffle it under its tiny body. Immediately it pulls in its head and legs in his tiny armour. ‘It’s allright, little fellow’, I whisper, ‘we’ll get you home’. Slowly, so it doesn’t fall of the leave, I’ll carry it back to the river, down to the shore, in the moist of water plants and mud, I’ll let it go.

Here, it can rest in safety, hidden from predators and sun, sheltered from the buzz of life so it can recover before taking that last leap home. 

I’ll drop its sibling nearby, so it too can shortly start its journey on the river, the journey of their life. 

This small gesture could mean the difference between life and death for these newborn turtles.

A small gesture can make a huge difference

Sometimes that’s all it takes; a helping hand to help us bridge the gap between where we are stuck and where we can explore our full potential. 

It is as simple as it is, a small gesture can make a huge difference. A word of kindness, an act of kindness, can turn the tide, bridge the gap, make us become who we are and prevent us from being derailed from our journey. 

Never underestimate the ripple effect of your actions; the impact of a small act.