Monday, August 9, 2004

RAOK: my story

PREFACE: I wrote this EXACTLY 4 years ago today! 8/09/08 is todays date
but I have predated this to 08/09/04 when it was orig. posted in our BYU TIMES NEWSLETTER

WHAT IS RAOK? Random acts of kindness (not sure how this is supposed to be pronounced)....... but I like to think of it as "ARE ALL OK?" we know that answer is NO and doing a RAOK makes an impact, I promise!

RAOK are simple or complex gestures of goodwill and happiness that one gives or participates in to make another happy. the act is RANDOM in that the recipient is a stranger, therefore making this unsuspecting person happier for a moment in time or a lifetime..... ya neva know......

how do I know?
When I was a single parent, living in subsidized housing project with a two year old, I didn't have the money to have much of a Christmas and certainly no money to "decorate". This was before I taught myself to be a freelancer! I was only 21 and this probably motivated me as much as anything to FIND A WAY to live lavishly on a frugal budget! I was working at a Portrait Studio and of course we were SWAMPED because it was the SEASON to get family photos, first christmas photos etc...........and working long hours. I came home from picking up my daughter from the babysitters house, tired and not really a "happy" person. I walked thru the hall and noticed that EVERYONE had put their decorations out while I was gone! Lights , wreathes, doormats etc.........which was beautiful but reminded me that I couldn't do this at the same time. When I got to my door there was a handmade wreath on my door, no note, no nothing.......but was made of cellophane and candy ..........then I noticed EVERYONES door had a handmade wreath of some sort on it......ALL DIFFERENT KINDS............A SANTA had made sure that our 8 the projects looked BEAUTIFUL !!!!!!!!!!!!!

I will always remember this very kind thanks were needed for this person, was done anonomously and I know the JOY that it brought to me and I only hope that the joy this SANTA got in doing it surpassed mine, because I know they are an ANGEL that deserves it!

I told myself then that if I ever got out of my situation EVERY CHRISTMAS I would work to make sure at least one person had a MERRIER CHRISTMAS because of me..........ya know..........the PASS IT ON works! Smiley

SOME RECENT RAOKS that happened to ME!

a NON member of Freelancebyu sent me a $10 donation via paypal, stating she wanted to help someone who helped others..... RAOK sent me her mystery shopping check $ towards my daughter's tuition! I was very touched and surprised about this wonderful and thoughtful RAOK

I took one of Kelly's friends to breakfast one morning, thinking I was going to do something NICE for someone else!.... much to my surprise at the register a gentleman in line took my bill from my hand and said "have a nice day" I was STUNNED, and said "HUH" (charming isn't it?) and he said, I have your check, I will be awhile so go on now, have a great day! WOW I was shocked in disbelief!

RAOK IS NOT JUST A "holiday thing"
I try to participate in at least ONE RAOK per month, really I should try it EVERYDAY.......... but realistically 1x per week would work best!

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