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Jayne Gautreau

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March 4, 2014
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A life-changing Costco trip | Moms

I am sure, like me, you enjoy hearing acts-of-kindness stories.

Our news can be discouraging at times. I am always thankful when I hear of how people treat each other with love and respect.

Sometimes we find ourselves in situations that we never expect.

I am one of those people who enjoys helping others in need, but on one particular day I found myself in need and on the receiving end of an act-of-kindness from a stranger.

It had been a hot summer day in August, and I was eight months pregnant with our third child.

I had spent most of the day in town running errands and attending a doctor’s appointment.

I had one more stop at Costco before I would go home.

I was tired, hungry and hot.

As I waddled up to the cash register and went to pay for my groceries, my ATM card was declined.

I was a little surprised, but preceded to use another card – it was declined too.

There was a young family behind me in line as I stood there flustered and embarrassed.

The lady behind me stepped forward. She then offered to pay for my items.

She told me how she has had this happen to her before and she would love to help. I refused because I was sure there had to be a mistake, and couldn't understand why my card was declined.

As I think back I was being stubborn. I also was a little prideful and refused to let someone offer me help.

I asked if I could try and withdraw money from the ATM because I was sure there had been a mistake.

I was unable to withdraw money either. I was pretty upset by now. As I turned to walk back to the cash register, one of the girls who worked at the store told me that my groceries had been paid for and I could go home.

I asked if it was the young family behind me in line who had paid for them and she said, “yes.”

I looked around quickly for them, but they had already left the store.

I knew I had to try and catch up with them, to say “thank you” and to find out how to mail them a check.

I walked as fast as I could to the parking lot and thankfully they were loading up their groceries.

I expressed how grateful I was for their kindness and asked if I could please have their address so I could mail them a check.

The lady refused, she said someone had shown her the same act of kindness at a gas station when her son was a newborn and so she felt it was important to help me in my time of need.

We talked a little more and I found out they had just moved to the area.

I left only knowing the lady’s first name. I was sad that I had not been able to find out more.

A few days later, I was in another store and happened to see my Good Samaritan shopping.

I was so excited to see her again. We visited and connected a little more. This time we shared contact information.

The great part of this story is that a friendship was made. We are now good friends and attend the same church, and actually live not too far from each other.

Many would say this was all coincidence, but I chose to believe it was an appointment made by God.

I almost missed out on something special by being stubborn and am thankful my friend was persistent.

A few months later I was able to help a couple that had something similar happen to them at the check-out counter.

The lady at the cash register told me how kind I was. I could barely speak; I just shook my head and said that I was just doing what someone else did for me.

As the couple thanked me and the lady gave me a hug – they said, “We will pay it forward.”

I smiled, “I know you will.”

My experience made me so much more aware that you never know other people's situations and some times we all need to bless each other with a little act-of-kindness.


I was just doing what someone else did for me.

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The News-Review Updated Mar 11, 2014 07:22AM Published Mar 13, 2014 07:15AM Copyright 2014 The News-Review. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.