Reading The Note
Kasey's eyes scanned over the note, over and over again. He couldn't believe what he was seeing. He kept thinking of the previous day, trying his best to figure everything out.
He hadn't done anything out of the ordinary, especially nothing that could warrant this. All he did was help the old lady, what was wrong with that? Why were they taking it so seriously? He felt he didn't deserve this.
Texans took hospitality seriously, or at least that’s what Kasey Simmon’s mom had always taught him. He respected those around him as a young man, but Kasey’s caring nature went beyond family.
It started as a day like any other. However, on this warm Texan morning, Kasey had no idea what a simple gesture would lead to when he decided to help a stranger.
He Could Tell Something Was Wrong
It started at a Kroger supermarket. Kasey noticed an elderly woman with bloodshot eyes. He wanted to help but did not want to make her uncomfortable either.
As he stood behind her, he casually commented on the weather. He then told her not to “look so down” and that she was a “beautiful lady.” He could immediately tell that she was more upset now.
She Refused To Smile
She grimaced more now, but Kasey was not so easily deterred. She reminded him of his gran and, such was his nature, he could not bear to see her upset.
He tried his best to crack some jokes and kept trying to make her smile. As he did this, he hadn’t expected her reaction. Instead of smiling as he hoped, she began to cry more.
He Didn’t Give Up
Kasey was invested in this now. Seeing the old woman so upset saddened him, and he felt more resolute about helping her. Where others may have given up and left her alone, Kasey couldn’t bring himself to leave her in tears.
Trying his hardest and acting the fool for her benefit, Kasey was determined to change her mood. After all his antics, something finally happened.
It Was Worth It
The woman’s face was pink now, her grey hair matted and wrinkled face streaked with tears. She looked so sad it broke Kasey’s heart. But after all his efforts, against all this, the woman broke a tiny smile.
Seeing it spread across her face was like a ray of sunshine to Kasey. Now that he’d accomplished the smile, he wanted to do more for her.
On A Roll
After getting the woman to start smiling, Kasey then offered to pay for her groceries. She flushed with embarrassment, but Kasey was insistent, and she eventually allowed him to do it.
Kasey was on a roll now and determined to turn her sad day around. Whatever was troubling her, Kasey felt that kindness could cure anything, so he offered one last favor.
A Job Well Done
Kasey helped the lady carry her bags and left her his Applebees business card if she ever needed help again. After loading her up, she was in better spirits.
As she jumped in to drive off, she wrote a little note, startling Kasey slightly as she sort of shoved it into his hand. As she drove off and Kasey read the note, it brought tears to his eyes.
The First Note
The note read, “Today is the anniversary of my husband’s passing. I’ve been finding it so hard to make it through the day. Thank you for your kindness.” The note was still streaked with tears.
Kasey felt so sad but also happy he had helped. He walked away, hoping she would be okay. What he didn’t know at the time was where his encounter with the old lady would lead.
The Next Day
By the next afternoon, Kasey could not dwell on the old lady. As a server at a local Applebees, his late shift was in full swing. Doing his best to keep up with the rush, Kasey cleared the table for a small family.
He immediately knew something was off. Despite there being two parents and two young kids, all the family ordered was a small flavored water for 37 cents before asking for the bill.
The Second Note
Being a dinner rush, any other server might have been annoyed by the family. They even asked to split the meager bill between two credit cards. But Kasey was no ordinary server.
Instead of anger, he politely did as they asked, choosing not to judge. When the family left, and he fetched the receipt, his jaw dropped as he found another note left for him.
Paying It Forward
The note was from the mom in the family. Decorated with hearts, and even though it spelled his name wrong, the note explained that the old lady Kasey had helped the day before was her mom.
She expressed the family’s gratitude and asked him to accept their gesture as a thank you for his kindness the day before. When Kasey looked at the receipt, he was left in tears again.
Kasey could not believe his eyes. It seems ordering the flavored water had just been a ruse. Kasey had to check in with his manager if this was really happening.
He felt like he didn’t deserve it. The manager confirmed it was real. For a 37 cent bill, the family had left Kasey a $500 tip.
He Wasn’t Alone
Kasey was so amazed by what had happened that he posted about it on social media. In no time, the story went viral. Before long, even national news agencies were running the story.
The reaction to Kasey’s story has been overwhelmingly positive. Praised for his kindness, Kasey continues to look for opportunities to help others.
Kasey’s philosophy in life is to be kind at all times. His example may be difficult to follow. These days, most people would rather look out for themselves than ever try to help another person.
Kasey’s story shows us that kindness can often be its own reward. A similar story shows that sometimes, kindness can get us into trouble.
A Kind Heart
It is said that having a kind heart costs you nothing. For Kayla, working in a convenience store was the only way she could make ends meet.
A hard-working girl through and through, Kayla had managed to fight her way to college, snagging a lucrative scholarship that covered her tuition. But although life was good to her, not all of it treated her right.
Kayla was born in a struggling family to a mom who fought with substance addiction for years. Alongside her two younger siblings, the family of four moved across the country before settling in Colorado.
Kayla’s mom became clean right before Kayla started high school, and things were finally looking up for their tiny family. They had no idea everything was about to come crashing down.
Changes In Her Body
Kayla was in her senior year when her mom started complaining about tired joints and constant stomach aches.
As any loving daughter would, Kayla put everything aside, even taking a day off school to drive her mom to the hospital. What they’d find would leave them beyond heartbroken.
Kayla’s mom had never been one to believe in visiting hospitals. She and her children had lived on medicine from dispensaries throughout the country.
But the pain she was enduring pushed her to visit the hospital. With her daughter by her side, she could face anything in life. She had no clue that her past had finally caught up with her.
The Consequences Are Coming
“Everything has a consequence,” Kayla’s mom used to say. “An action has a reaction, no matter how small or insignificant.”
As the mother-daughter duo waited for the doctor, Kayla could see how shaken her mom was. Deep down, she knew that whatever was going on was way more severe than the lady was letting on.
The doctor walked in with the results, and the following months became the darkest in Kayla’s life. Her mom had been diagnosed with stage three liver cancer due to her history with alcohol.
Although her family would do everything to stabilize the condition, her cancer would graduate to stage four.
A Sad Reality
Kayla’s mom succumbed to cancer two years after her diagnosis. She’d fought valiantly, all while grooming Kayla to be the best version of herself.
Even on her deathbed, she begged her daughter to always have a kind heart. “It costs nothing to be a good person,” she said. Still, she didn’t fail to remind Kayla that everything has a consequence.
Now a student pursuing a law degree in one of the finest universities in Colorado, Kayla was trying her best to finish school while watching over her younger siblings.
Since her scholarship only covered her tuition, she needed a job to help her settle her housing and transport bills. That’s where the convenience store came in.
A Day In The Life
Kayla’s shift at the store was an easy enough one. She reported at 3 PM after her classes and clocked out at 10 PM.
The day that the incident took place was like any other. Kayla arrived at her usual time and sat behind the register to work. She wasn’t even fifteen minutes in when an elderly lady walked up to her.
Talking To Her
The lady seemed to be in her seventies, with a small basket she’d filled with groceries. She said “hi” to Kayla, her smile never wavering as she talked about her day.
She seemed sweet enough, reminding Kayla of the sweetness her mom had exuded in her last months. Kayla did her best to mirror the woman’s energy, holding her gaze and chatting as she rang her up.
The Final Cost
Kayla’s concentration was on the woman as she tallied her produce and shared the final cost. The woman presented her card, and Kayla swiped it.
But the machine declined, starting a series of events that would land Kayla more trouble than she bargained for. The older woman’s brows furrowed, a look of worry plastering over her face. “Not now,” she whispered under her breath, low enough for anyone not to hear.
But of course, the remark got to Kayla’s ear. She saw how distressed the woman was because her card wasn’t going through and knew she had to help. Kayla told the woman it was all right. She handed her the groceries and proceeded to fish out her own cash to pay.
The older woman couldn’t believe what was happening. She tried to stop Kayla, saying she’d get her son to come to pay and pick everything up, but Kayla wasn’t hearing any of it. Little did she know she’d just kicked the honest’s nest.
Dealing With Management
The woman took her groceries and left. But she wasn’t even out of the parking lot when Kayla’s manager called her to the side.
He asked what the commotion was about, saying he’d seen her have a confrontation with the woman. Kayla tried to explain himself, but the manager wouldn’t listen. What he did next showed what kind of world she was living in.
Kayla’s manager scolded her, saying she shouldn’t have engaged the customer in such a way that left her upset. He let her go with a warning, threatening to fire her the next time she’d engage a customer in such a way.
Kayla couldn’t understand what had happened. She’d only been nice to a customer and was on the verge of losing her job for it.
A Turn Of Events
But as the day turned into evening, the manager called Kayla again, telling her that the older woman was back and asking for her. Kayla hurried to the office to find a one thousand dollar tip waiting for her.
The woman confirmed whatever Kayla had told her boss, explaining that her good heart would serve her well in life. Although everything has a consequence, there is no cost to being a good person. Disclaimer: To protect the privacy of those depicted, some names, locations, and identifying characteristics have been changed and are products of the author's imagination. Any resemblances to actual events, places, or persons, living or dead, are entirely coincidental.