The “Pay it Forward Sandals” Story.

the pay it forward shoes

We spent her birthday shopping around town a bit – having a bit of a Girl’s Day while the boys were at Cub Scout Camp. I was planning to paint her nails when we got home so I thought we’d look for a cute pair of sandals to show off her toes.

After a couple hours at the mall, we found a really cute pair of golden sandals at Payless that were on sale – score! We headed to the register to wait in line. BB was a bundle of excitment – she let pretty much everyone she met know that it was her birthday – in case the tiara on her head wasn’t a give-away (though really, for her, a tiara is often just part of her regular wardrobe). We kept busy waiting by chattering about how great being four was and what should we do next – we chatted amiably with the sales clerk and the woman in front of us in line and then eventually it was our turn.

BB tends to charm the pants off of everyone we meet and being her birthday, she was in rare form. I’m pretty sure the sales clerk was falling madly in love with her cuteness but I was utterly floored when the woman in front of us in line asked to pay for her sandals – say what?

You hear about these pay it forward stories, but it’s never happened to me and I certainly wasn’t expecting it to. I guess that’s really the beauty of those moments – when they are totally unexpected and out of the blue. I almost protested because we really didn’t need the help financially but the woman looked so thrilled to be able to do it – probably especially because it was for an adorable, friendly girl on her birthday – and the sandals were inexpensive enough that I knew it wouldn’t likely set her back any so I smiled and thanked her about a million times and the sales clerk and I both remarked that we’d never experienced anything like it.

Of course now I will be on the lookout for a way to pay it forward, though I kind of want to save the opportunity for a similarly perfect moment, you know? I was so surprised and flattered by this small gesture – I think of it every time that BB asks to wear these sandals (how can I say no, really?).

Has something like this ever happened to you?