• Birthday

  • Children’s books

  • Homeless

  • Chemo

I drive a 1998 Honda. It is a great car with a few quirks. One that has surfaced recently is that the gas gauge isn’t quite, um, accurate.

On the way to drop off Big Brother at school this morning, it dropped straight down to ‘E’–He said a prayer that we would make it to the gas station safely.

We did. But, the car stopped 10 feet from the pumps. 10 feet. First the first time in my life, I was out of gas. (You saw that coming.)

For 15 minutes, I was stuck, in the gas station driveway with my flashing hazards on, unable to find someone to help push me the last few feet. I also could not get ahold of the boys’ Dad who was *just* around the corner about to leave the house and head to work.

Literally, no one stepped up to help out as all were rushing to start their day, not noticing the stalled car in the flurry of rush hour.

So, I decided to just buy a gas can and go from there.

I dug through my bag. Um, no wallet. What?

Okay, I’ll use my secret stash for emergencies. NOT THERE either, what?

So, I let the gas station attendant know why a crazy lady was leaving her car at the station in the station’s driveway. Holding hands, Little Brother and I started walking home to get money.

“Ma’am, wait!” I heard someone shouting to me.

The gas station attendant came running towards me with a gas can. “I can spot you a gallon of gas to get you started.” And, he helped me fill it up and shared with me funny stories of when he ran out of gas, which has happened several times to him — thus his handy gas can from his car.

With that gifted gallon of gas, we easily made it home, found the missing wallet, and drove back to the station without any problem. Both Little Brother and I were touched by his act of kindness. As I returned his gas can and gave him money for the gas he bought me, he explained that his birthday was on Monday and his mom’s birthday would have been Friday, but she has passed away from cancer last year. Little Brother chimed in that tomorrow is his dad’s birthday and all of us thought that coincidence was cool.

“When you started walking down the street with your son, I remembered times when my mom ran out of gas and I was with her and no one helped us. I just couldn’t see that happen to you.”

After a lovely conversation, Little Brother and I thanked him, and we started to walk back to the car. And, then I realized that I just received an answer to another need I had–but different than not having gas. Several weeks ago, we made busy books for kids and comfort care kits for women. I knew that I needed to do something more than just donate them, but I was at a loss as to what else. As I was walking out of that gas station, I realized what we needed to do.

Little Brother and I conferred, agreed to the plan, and went back into the gas station. As I told him very briefly that we decided to donate those items to the hospital in memory of his mom on her birthday, I wish you could have been with me to see the look on his face. (I tear up each time I remember it.) It took him a couple of seconds to recover, and, do you know what he said?

“Thank you! I can’t wait to put this on Facebook!”

That cracked us all up!

Act of Kindness Totally Out of Gas Pennies of Time

***Angel Mommy Cynthia, thank you for being an inspiration and an example to your son, Letrelle. Such a quick gesture was an immense help to another mommy this morning.***

And, now I’ll be watching the odometer to determine when I need gas, never forgetting the morning that our little Honda hit 213,366 miles.