two boys around the age of eight or nine ramble around the local Dollar Tree trying to decide what they want. they run down the candy aisle noisily, knocking over a shelf of Twizzlers, then throw them back haphazardly. people notice them, frown, annoyed that there are no parents governing their behavior.
the blond one, a cute little boy with an uncanny resemblance to the little boy from the Dennis the Menace movie and a highly decorated arm cast on, accidentally bumps into me while running away from the dark-haired one with freckles. they have picked up two or ten toy guns and are engaged in a high stakes battle, apparently, and don’t notice me standing there.
i move quickly out of the way. he says “oh sorry!” as he ambles past, followed by a loudly whispered “she’s hot!” to the other boy, who breaks out into hysterical laughter at the blond one’s not so discreet whisper.
i continue to shop, and about ten minutes later, i am in line behind the two boys, who have a handful of some kind of goo that sticks the the walls, random candy, and the toy guns they were playing with. i don’t notice at first, but when i hear them whispering, my attention is drawn to the black little girl about seven years old, who is in front of them checking out. she is on crutches, one leg completely immobile in a cast. the left side of her face has several bruises and scratches, as well as her right arm. she stands next to a girl who must be her older sister, about thirteen, who is telling her that she needs to put something back cause she can’t afford everything she wants.
the little girl fumbles through her Tinkerbell wallet looking for more change, or more neatly folded dollars to add to the three she has placed on the counter, disappointed to find there’s nothing else in there. the boys in front of me are stare. i suppose everyone does, trying to figure out what on earth kind of accident this pretty little girl got into to get a broken leg and all those scars.
“come on girl. mama is waitin! just put something back already!” the older girl snaps, embarrassed that her sister is holding up the growing line.
the little girl looks at the five things she has up there, not being able to decide between the coloring/puzzle book, the box of crayons, the princess crown, the box of Dots, or the pretty barrettes.
“i can’t ever get what i want.” she says sadly, pushes the princess crown and the coloring book back towards the cashier.
the blond little boy, who has been staring intently for the last few minutes, slyly puts the toy gun and a gigantic Snickers bar down on the side of the counter and places two of the five crumpled, sweaty dollars he has, up on the counter in front of the little girl.
“you can get it. here, you can have this. i have extra.”
the smile that emanates from the little girl’s face is enough to make everyone in the line smile with her, including the boy.
unsure as to whether or not she should accept, she looks up at her older sister, who just responds by rolling her eyes. “thank you.” she says.
“you’re welcome. and make sure you stay off your leg. my mom tells me that my arm won’t heal good cause i’m always using it.” he says sincerely.
the little girl nods her head, smiles, and limps out the door after her sister.
i was moved by this little boy’s compassion and generosity, and it reminded me that there is still a lot of good in the world, despite what people may think. so, i wanted to share.
when’s the last time you did something nice for someone you didn’t know?