I’m sitting at my desk on a Friday night and I’m thinking about ripples. Lest you think I have finally gone over the edge, I will explain.
A drop of water falls into a silent pond. Where the drop hits the water’s surface, a ripple appears. And another. And another and another, rings spreading ever outward to touch more and more of that silent pond, eventually spreading out to touch it all.
Love is like that. So is hate but I want to talk about love.
A few weeks ago, I went to WRV Elementary to join three ladies from the Indiana philanthropic organization known as Tri Kappa. Susan Bays, Pam McKee and Peggy Bull were joined by Pam’s grandson Ivan, who is a joy all by himself!
This was my third year meeting these ladies in the second-grade classroom of Deb Nolting. Deb is also a Tri Kappa lady so I guess I should have said four ladies. I digress.
The Tri Kaps stay a few hours with the second-graders, reading stories, leading activities, singing songs, talking and listening to the children in Deb’s class. The annual day in second grade always makes me happy because, for these second-graders, it’s an afternoon of fun and for the Tri Kappa ladies, it’s what they love to do the most, to spread fun and positivity.
After the classroom visit this year, I followed Susan and company over to the Worthington Public Library to cover a donation Susan had said they were making. Library-lady Andrea Fuller is also a Tri Kappa gal, so this made perfect sense. At the library, I met a woman who I knew right away I would be writing a story about.
Marlindy Badenhorst, from South Africa, along with her mother, Veronica, met us there and as she rolled in, the Tri Kappa ladies eyes lit up in anticipation of doing more good deeds that day. This made my heart smile.
Marlindy, or Lindy, has been confined to a specialized wheelchair since she was fifteen years old due to injuries she suffered in a horrific car accident in South Africa. She had a head injury, a broken wrist and her back was broken in three places.
This would leave some people not just literally but also figuratively broken. I’m not certain I would be strong enough to handle life on wheels forever. But Lindy is that special kind of person who seems to see life itself as a gift to be slowly unwrapped and savored. Her shiny sparkling self and her indomitable spirit made me grateful to have met her, her mother and her adorably blond little rascal, CJ.
The Tri Kappa crew presented Lindy with a check for $100, a donation to add to her fundraising efforts on GoFundMe as she tries to raise enough money to replace her aging and falling-apart manual wheelchair.
I got back to the office and almost immediately went to GoFundMe to donate what I could to her campaign.
About a week after the story was published, I got a message at the office to call a woman I will call Z. This woman had read Lindy’s story and contacted me because she wanted to donate a chair, something called a Hoveround.
I had never heard of a Hoveround, but I called Z and, during our conversation, she mentioned the chair was an $8,000 motorized device she had no use for. She didn’t want a dime for it, she just wanted Lindy to have it. She said it was a heavy thing and we talked about getting a crew of guys together to help move it. I messaged Marlindy on Facebook to let her know and to see if this was something she can use, since her manual chair is modified to accommodate her particular abilities.
Marlindy, who is clearly smarter than I am, Googled the device and told me she would loooooooooove to have one and it was something that she could really use, especially for excursions with CJ.
The happy, happy ending is that while I sit here and write, Lindy’s new mobility alternative is charging up and waiting for her to take it for a spin. She still needs a new manual chair, so if you have an extra buck and an internet connection, head to https://www.gofundme.com/new-manual-wheelchair-for-marlindy and give until it hurts. Please.
So, just like ripples spreading in a silent pond, the kind actions of the Tri Kappa ladies spread, inspiring me to donate and to write the story and the story was read by a kind woman named Z in Worthington who was inspired to give a sweet woman from South Africa another way to get around as she lives her life here among us.
It’s beautiful to me to watch the ripples of love as they grow and expand and make people happy. Thanks for reading.
Patti is a Staff Writer for the Greene County Daily World. She loves to laugh and also loves kitties. If you would like to share a story or just make a friend, she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.