I’m a firm believer in karma and that can go both ways.
In my world there’s good karma, as well as bad.
I still recall several years ago when a friend had a series of really bad luck. You know things like identity theft, flat tire, broken dryer – all at once. Fixable stuff, but bad luck all the same. Things that make you crazy and angry all at once, but you know in time will pass.
At the time of this friend’s bad luck and misfortune, I couldn’t help but ask, “who do you need to make peace with to set this all right?”
Yes, I know, weird perspective – for most. But the way my brain wraps is when so much bad comes so quick and all at once, I can’t help but wonder what has caused ones karma to go astray.
Now of course there is a good side to the karma theory and that’s where this column space will go … for this week.
I personally love the act of “pay it forward.” It’s fun to every once in a while pick up the tab for the person behind you in a drive thru line or in the case of my guy, send over a drink or dessert to an unsuspecting table in a restaurant.
Of course you do these things with no expectation; you do them simply for the gratification of putting a smile on someone else’s face or perhaps putting a bright spot in their day.
A few weeks back, my kids and I became recipients of one such generosity. It came at the hands of a person said to be, “local hero Officer Plath.”
At least that’s what the girl at the McDonalds drive-thru shared as my children and I pulled up to retrieve their McFlurry’s.
As we sat in the drive-thru line, prior to this surprise we made small talk about the officer’s SUV. The kids inquiring on an every day car customized for those who protect and serve.
I’m sure this pay it forward notion is something Officer Plath does on the regular. I know we’ve shared pieces of his generosity right here in these pages. But this pay it forward was different.
My children and I had not happened by McDonald’s that day by chance. The reason we had taken a trip to town to grab an ice cream was because I had just shared some life changing news with them.
Amidst our isolation from the world, as we live through COVID life – no school, no friends and a “new” normal – I had to share words with them I never saw in my future.
I have cancer.
My cursor has blinked for a good five minutes following the typing of that sentence as my mind is still wrapping around my recent diagnosis. The good news is, it was found early, it is treatable and I will be fine.
Details beyond all of this we will save for another day. Today is about the beauty of karma and the generosity of “Hero Officer Plath.”
My children and I will never forget that day and that gesture, this I know for sure. As they had just learned their mom had cancer and we simply went to town to grab an ice cream and gain a few distractions, Officer Plath reminded us of what we already knew: there is beauty and kindness all around us and even in the darkest storm, the sun will still break though.
God bless you, officer, and thank you.
Teresa Hammond is a staff reporter for The Oakdale Leader, The Riverbank News and The Escalon Times. She may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 847-3021.