Kind Woman Helps Elderly Man In Store
Joshua Patton 2/7/2019
Sometimes a gesture so simple as buying a birthday card can be a much bigger symbol about the power of love and longevity.
These are subjects the poets and artists of the world have devoted entire careers to, but no matter how many songs, images, or stories we get, people never tire of love stories. Our desire to love and be loved is powerful. If we see others with it (especially if we don't have it), it can create equally powerful negative feelings.
People are more than their jealousies and insecurities, though. In fact, sometimes a chance interaction in a Dollar Tree retail store can be the kind of love story that gives even the most unromantic of us a teensy bit of hope.
It began on a February afternoon when Louisa Lenore McKinney stopped by the Dollar Tree to pick up a few rolls of wrapping paper. One of the ways people like to show their love and appreciation for one another is celebrate them with gifts and cards on special occasions.
There is no occasion more special than celebrating the day a person who important to you was born. Louisa wasn't the only person in the store that day partaking in this uniquely human ritual. An elderly gentleman in the store approached a woman, neither of whose names we know, and asked her for help.
The woman eagerly agreed, and the man told her that he needed a hand picking out a birthday card for someone. So the two went to the card aisle together, and the woman handled the bending and reaching.
Facebook/Louise Lenore McKinney
So she could better help the older gentleman, the woman asked him whose birthday he wanted to celebrate with the card.
The man replied:
"It's for me, if I wake up tomorrow, I'll be 85. My wife wanted to get me something, but she's very sick and cannot leave the house, and I want her to know I got a birthday card from her."
It might seem like a small thing, a silly thing, but it's the kind of gesture only a lifetime of love and companionship could bring.
Louisa didn't go into greater detail in her Facebook post, but she captured the short-version of this love story. The man and his wife met as kids and were married by the time they were teenagers. Today, that would seem too big a risk, but times were different back then and kids were forced to grow into adults much more quickly.
Like most men of his generation, the man was called into military service. Even during peacetime, with the Cold War looming over the world, their separation was fraught with fear and worry. Yet, she stood by him. They raised children together and their marriage goes on strong to this day.
Like an O. Henry story, this man went to get a birthday card for his wife to give to him. The card makes him happy because it will make his wife happy. And when she recovers enough to leave the house, they have a treat waiting for them.
The woman who helped him owns a restaurant, and she promised the couple a meal on-the-house as soon as they are able.
It's amazing what good a small act of kindness can do, whether it's from a man to his wife, a stranger to that husband, or the woman who saw it all and shared it with us.