A few weeks ago, I was waiting at a red light. A gentleman was walking along the row of cars up the inner shoulder. He bore a white cardboard sign, upon which he had proclaimed his predicament. Apparently, he had recently lost his job and had no way to feed his two kids.
As he got closer, I was going to close my window. However, my OCD is such that both windows must be level at all times, so I lowered my head instead to avoid eye contact. I reactively thought “I don’t have any cash anyway” until I remembered that I did have a few dollars for tolls and meters in the glove-box, just in case. ”But that’s just 1 or 2 dollars” my inner monologue continued “it might be insulting to just give this guy a couple singles.”
At this point I realized that while some people might have an issue accepting charity, or accepting $1 bills, the best course of action would be for me to go ahead and help him out. Although, since I belabored this decision so much, he had already turned around, the light was green, and I had no choice but to carry on.
I know I don’t have to give to everyone, every-time, but I try to help when I can. I feel like I let him down, and that I let myself down. Even though I eventually arrived at the right decision, I took too long and missed my chance.