A Ten-dollar Story

“Ma’am, can I talk to you for just a minute?”


“Thank you so much for stopping to listen to me. My sister and I, here, need some help. We were put out of where we live this morning and haven’t eaten since then. We have some money, but we’re trying to save it. The rest of our family is trying to figure out what we’re gonna do.”

“I hope things get better soon.”

“Thank you, ma’am. I do, too. Can you help us out?”

My mind leaped beyond believing this particular story to real people who were doing their best to navigate a situation just like this. I thought about the positivity of karma and how we all need a variety of help on occasion and how assistance can come in so many ways. In order to get through experiences in the best possible manners, it’s often useful to pay attention to *everything,* leaving room for answers to overrule confusion.

A trusted force moved my fingers to open my wallet and give this guy $10.00. I’d divvied up this amount among his “family members,” budgeting roughly $2.00 of my well-earned dollars per person.

“Thank you, ma’am. God bless you.”

“I do hope things get better soon. God bless you, too.”

Shortly after I walked away, I saw both of them doubled over laughing before recomposing themselves to retell their story to a group of people. I was the only yes.

At first, I was angry because the truth is my default. Then I felt good about my intentions. After that, I felt sad that hustling is, indeed, an occupation. I made peace with this little incident by being grateful that I could “spare” the money and ultimately, that I had paid $10 for a temporarily convincing story.

Everything meant something and something, too, meant everything.

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