Connecting with others – Good Deeds and MitzvahsBefore and after my Mom’s passing, there were synchronicities and signs that became apparent.

One thing that struck me as I listened to her friends was how she liked to give of herself. Whether it was as a resource instructor helping students with learning challenges or stopping to visit friends who were in the rehabilitation section where she lived, one could say my Mom did good deeds, sometimes called mitzvahs.

When we were returning home from New Jersey after her service, I was looking for a place at Newark Airport to have breakfast. A gentleman was walking around and asking people if they could spare a dollar or two, and he approached my husband. My husband’s reaction was interesting for me to observe. He asked the man, if he could buy him breakfast instead. You could see the man’s struggle but he eventually said yes, even to the bottle of water rather than a cup of coffee he really wanted.

The man wandered off and when breakfast was ready, I wasn’t sure if he was still in the area. My husband went off in search of him, found him, and handed him the breakfast. When the interaction was over, my husband’s comment to me was to the effect, “I did a mitzvah in honor of your mother”.

My husband’s action reminded me of what a good and caring man he is. I was touched by how he connected it to my mom. I was reminded that it doesn’t take much for us to do good deeds for others and I decided I would try to do something every day for one year.

While I have not succeeded in a daily good deed, I am more conscious of the good deeds I can do. Some days I have let someone cut in front me in a grocery store line, other days I have donated to people or animals in need. I know there are many other ways to be nice to others including one my mom was known for – smiling. It made her feel good and it made the other person feel good, too.

What can you do for someone today – smile, open a door, pay it forward, leave a tip, or make a donation? It’s equally important to think about what can you do for yourself each day – eat healthy foods, exercise, get a good night’s rest, acknowledge your accomplishments?

Wishing you all the positivity and kind deeds of the holiday season!

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