Two Sweaty Dollars

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?

19 comments

  1. sweet story. I especially have a tender heart for compassionate children. Makes you hopeful that they stay that way.

    I do nice things for people I don’t know all the time. people do nice things for me pretty often too 🙂

    1. …like make me spend money on bras at Nordstroms and buy Clarisonics. you know what Reecie… you’re bad for my wallet. lmbo.

      i kid. lol. thanks for the comment! 🙂

  2. That was beautiful. I’m glad I’m not the only one noticing things like this in the world.

    I try to do small, nice things for people all the time because I’m reminded of how little compassion we have for one another this decade. I would guess the most recent one was for a girl who plays in front of my house. I’d taken a walk one morning and she was in front of my house playing. When I got back she’d scraped her knee and none of the other kids were around. I got her some water and a hello kitty bandaid. She smiled and told me she loved my hair and then ran off to do more kid-like things.

    I guess that’s why I do nice things. That smile from people who don’t think they’re seen because I think I’m typically one of those people.

  3. Omg. I am trying real hard not to cry thug tears right now, lol. I adore kindhearted children. So often we hear about kids bullying each other and how that is just them “being kids” instead of recognizing that THIS type of thing is kids being kids; being open hearted and generous to people that no one has taught them to mistrust or hate.

    I think the last nice thing I did was initiate pay it backward at Starbucks. Has this ever happened to anyone else? It happens at my Starbucks all the time, where you pay for the car in line behind you and then they pay for the car behind them and so forth. A few weeks ago there was a mom behind me in an SUV with at least 4 kids, who looked every bit of tired and self neglected as most moms can wind up being. So I paid for her coffee and for the fraps for the kids. I didn’t get to see her when she realized her ticket had been paid, but I hope it at least put a smile on her face.

    1. La! i’ve never heard of this but this is one of the nicest things. awww. you probably made that woman’s day. i’m going to do this soon. love it!

  4. Wow! This brightened my day. Little kids surprise you sometimes and hopefully he’ll grow to be an adult version of his extremely kind current self. I also hope the little girl and her sister both pass Dennis the Menace’s kindness along to someone else who needs too.

    My last act of kindness happened at the local post office. Kids in Charleston make roses out of Palm frawns and sell them for change. A little guy offered to sell me a few and I gave him $5 and told him to sell the ones that he was going to give me to someone else. I hope I bumped his sales.

  5. Awww! Such a heart warming story. Love to hear/read about people being so unselfish and giving to others.

    I believe the last generous thing I’ve done for someone is when I recently gave a young man the Concords I was wearing. Long story short; I met the young man while he was shopping for a new pair of shoes with his little brother and their grandmother who raises them. Talked with them the entire time I was in the store and was simply amazed by how well mannered, respectful and just all around brilliant the kid is. I really think the only reason God blessed me with a hook up for those sneakers is so that I could give them to the young man. I wear the same size as he does and I didn’t even really like the shoes like that. It felt so good to give to someone do deserving (I also purchased the new pair of shoes they were initially planning on getting that day but don’t let this get back to my nephews. Lol)

  6. Um…

    *leiomy drops with a saccharine thump*

    Stuff like this make me smile SO bright. Makes me STILL believe the children are our future. There is a very high chance that this little boy will grow up to be a quite a fine man. Yay!

    1. that was my thought exactly! like… people were looking at him like he was wild for running around the store, but he turned out to be a really sweet boy.

  7. I try to do nice things for folks whenever presented with the opportunity. Nothing will honestly make you feel better than doing something nice for someone else, especially someone in need.

  8. Only you would sit there and watch another lil’ kid give up his money instead of offering to pay for that lil’ girl’s stuff when you saw she didn’t have enough…SMH…hahahahahahahaahaha

    1. LOL only you would come here with this comment.

      i was prepared to pay for all her items, but the little boy beat me to it and i wasn’t going to take his shine away. i did however pay for the snickers and gun he put back. 🙂

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