It's not easy being a single mother, let alone a single mother going through a messy divorce while trying to take care of four-year-old daughter with bullying tendencies, a six-year-old son with Asperger's and ADHD, and a college student who was forced to take a year off from school.
Yet, somehow, one Raleigh mom manages to stick to the family's tradition of going out to a different restaurant every Friday night.
Last Friday, while at a Pizza Hut in Durham with her two youngest, the unidentified woman approached the young man sitting in the booth beside them and apologized in advance for the noise her kids were bound to make.
Her son's medication had worn off, and it was only a matter of time before he acted out.
To her surprise, the man told her not to worry about it, and that, as the father of three children himself, he could relate to her hardship.
As the meal went on, the mother tried her best to keep her kids well-mannered by using "engaging behavior" and other parenting methods she had picked up from books, classes, and experience.
She hadn't even noticed the next booth clear out until she was approached by a waitress and the restaurant's manager and informed that the man she spoke with had left something behind for her.
In addition to paying for the entire family's meal and purchasing a Pizza Hut gift card for them to take home, the man also wrote down a lengthy note explaining the reason for his random act of kindness:
I do not know your back story, but I have had the privilege of watching you parent your children for the past 30 minutes. I have to say thank you for parenting your children in such a loving manner.
I have watched you teach your children about the importance of respect, education, proper manners, communication, self control, and kindness all while being very patient. I will never cross your path again but am positive that you and your children have amazing futures.
Keep up the good work and when it starts to get tough do not forget that others may be watching and will need the encouragement of seeing a good family being raised. God bless! -Jake.