Stories, Strangers, and Chance Encounters

People come into our lives for a reason. Some people will teach you a lesson, or inspire you. Others will break your heart. Then there are people that will show you what love means, make you smile, or tug at your heart strings. The best people to cross paths with are the ones that inspire hope.

Several years ago, a text message came through to my phone that was a) slightly offensive and b) very revealing. I knew that this was not meant for me right away and responded to the effect of "wrong number". Apologies came in a moment later. I shrugged it off and went about my day. I get wrong number calls and texts from time to time. Who doesn't?

Later that night, a text from the same number came in, again with apologies for the not so nice phrase the original message included. I assured the person on the other end that it was okay, I was not offended. The next afternoon, again, a text from this wrong number. The question was in reference to what my opinion of the texter was now that I knew his little secret.

Now, I am not one to chat up a wrong number. But for some reason, this was different. When you learn something revealing about another person as soon as you encounter them, the rules of conversation don't really apply. My guard was down. I felt comfortable enough with the person on the other end of the message to become facebook friends, but as you know, life moves pretty fast. Before long I had lost my cellphone at the hands of my cute little boy, I no longer had the phone number of this oddly acquired new acquaintance. From time to time he popped up in my news feed, but that was it. It didn't appear that we were destined to be bosom buddies or anything.

Fast forward to Valentine's Day 2014.

I was having a rough day. I was overextended, the kids were both fussy because I was throwing off the routine and rushing around, trying to get Roo ready to go to the Valentine's Day party at {Mr.}Adam's work. I was feeling especially weary. My husband crushed my ego. I gave him a card with the most romantic quote ever inside and he shrugged it off, giving me the idea he had forgot about Valentine's Day. When the baby went down for a nap, facebook beckoned. Mom's chance to unwind.

As I was scrolling to see what my pals were up to, I noticed a status update from Kyle R. Oh, yeah! The wrong number guy. The words that I read did not tug at my heart strings... they nearly severed them. I am not one to let my emotions get the best of me for the record.

Well, I see sweet and heart warming tales day in and day out on facebook. As is the standard, I gushed "aww".  I sniffled a little. I went on with my day. But I kept thinking about that status update. It really touched my heart.

After a weekend of coming back to that update from the wrong number guy I started thinking, this guy is the kind of guy that chicks dream about. He seems friendly, kind, witty, bright, he seems to be one of those rare guys that I thought didn't exist other than my husband. This guy can inspire hope that there are good people in the world. This guy can instill hope for the Weary Single Woman. There are great guys out there! Guys that are kind, courteous, intelligent and cute!

I had the chance to ask the wrong number guy a few questions. Ladies, let me introduce you to Kyle. Be prepared to swoon a little.

"Kyle R."


Kyle What are your hobbies?
"I have little money, and entertain myself with virtually no "fun fund." Writing (poems, lyrics, short stories), going to the gym (for health/stress relief), Netflix marathons, random road trips, open fires, dancing like nobody's watching. I enjoy Ohio State Football, stand up comedy, wine and good conversation with close friends. And anything I've not done before."

What is your philosophy on life Kyle?
"Life is easy, people make it complicated. Eat, sleep, breathe, love. The rest just keeps the scenery interesting.

"Smile ‘til your cheeks hurt
Laugh ‘til your sides hurt
Love ‘til your heart hurts
Then do it all over again".

How do you spend your days Kyle?
"Studying mostly, as I'm currently a biochemistry major. Driving a delivery truck pays the bills and gives me time to think. There's a little black notebook on the dash I scribble in constantly. I make it a point to have a real conversation with a complete stranger every day. Everyone has a story to tell."

What constitutes the perfect day?
"Funny you should ask, as I have a formula :) Most days are perfect. A worth while day is supported by four moments, or “columns":

1) Laughter. For one moment each day, make a total stranger laugh--and laugh with them.
2) Charity. For one moment each day, commit to a selfless act for a total stranger--with a smile.
3) Risk. For one moment each day, put yourself out there with something to lose--but also something to gain.
4) Spontaneity. For one moment each day, live entirely within that moment--then act."

Tell me about your relationship with your parents Kyle.
"My childhood was practically perfect. We grew apart in adolescence, mostly due to poor choices on my part after leaving for college. At times we didn't speak for months on end. Nowadays, I call them at least a few times a week. I still don’t believe I understand how much they love me. Though, to be fair, I’m not sure if they understand how much I love them either. "

Kyle, that was the sweetest facebook update ever. What made you pull over?
"It was late afternoon on a holiday Friday and the road at least eight lanes. Looking around at all the cars full of people, I realized no one was going to help her. After all, they had places to be. A few were even laughing at her predicament. However, it was mostly the longing way she stared into the branches, as if she couldn't accept it had actually happened. To the onlookers it was a balloon, to her--I assumed--it was a whole lot more."

Have you helped strangers randomly before?
"As often as I can, as the second pillar suggests. I saw a unique opportunity during the Atlanta Icepocalypse a few weeks before… check my Facebook post from January 29th."

How did you feel when you heard the balloon was for her late son?
"Perhaps there is an afterlife, and angels exist there. Maybe they show up when we're helpless... but I can't know for sure. I’m yet to see this happen. In their absence, I believe we all have the chance to be angelic--if even just for the little things. There is a winged pendant around my neck every day and night to remind me that sometimes people need to be saved, need to believe, and need someone to give them a reason."

What is your view on relationships?
"We're all responsible for our own happiness, but it seems there is a kind of happiness that can only be found in another. Most of what I know is based on observation. It's the long and happy marriages that fascinate me. From what I can tell, honesty breeds humility, humility breeds passion, passion breeds sex, sex breeds trust, trust eventually becomes love. And in the end, love is all you need."

How is it that a guy like you is single?
"It's been a long time since I dated. Around 2009, the Kyle you know today was a selfish, arrogant and dishonest prick. My actions burned so many bridges that some weren't even mine. There was one young woman who believed in me, but after years of repeatedly betraying her trust even she walked out of my life forever. She hasn't spoken to me in years. In some ways, I guess a part of me is still waiting on her. This is what I do know: until I've undoubtedly become the man she always knew I could be I've no business finding another. If I do meet someone, I expect it will be serendipitous--perhaps a chance encounter in a coffee shop."

(Stop Swooning Now!)

I am a married woman, but that doesn't mean that my faith in men in general doesn't need to be restored. After being out in the world and interacting with the public, believe me, I have met some guys that have that effect on me, you know, the cringe at the sight of them effect. I bet you have too. It never fails, every time I am involved with the general male population I thank my lucky stars for my husband.

But... that worries me. What about my daughter? Is she destined for some greasy haired guy that plays video games all day and has no concept of conversation, etiquette or respect to sweep her off her feet? {Instant Headache}. No, there are great guys out there still guys like my husband Adam and my pal Kyle {the wrong number guy}, to influence future generations.

I hope you enjoyed reading about a very kind and sweet eligible bachelor that I am honored to call a friend these days. Please, go away from this article with  2 things:

1) Hope that there are still good people in this world, that there are guys like this out there for the single weary mom, and for the mom like me that worries about what kind of man my daughter will fall in love with some day... (Geez lady! The baby is 4 months old! It will be okay...but just in case. How can we freeze Kyle so that when Harper is about 22 she can meet this guy?)

2) The inspiration to follow Kyle's lead. Buy a coffee for the person behind you in line at Starbucks, help a stranger in need, make a difference in someones life every day. Everyone has a story to tell. Take the time to listen.


  1. I love that I'm not the only person that lives by those rules! My husband thinks I'm crazy, heck I have a Jeep with a blown engine to show for my generosity! He sees it as a waste of money, I see it as a friend was in need and I wasn't meant to drive that Jeep. I may be stupid, but I'm happily stupid :)

  2. such a neat story. He seems like such a sweet person. I think it is awesome you are friends now

  3. This made my day. I needed to hear that there are still good people out there. It's funny were you can make friends!

  4. Great story! Thanks for sharing. Just never know who you might meet via a wrong number text. Visiting via "WakeUpWednesday" linkup

  5. Sara, what a sweet story! There are more good people in the world than bad, this random friend of yours prove that! And he is cute!

  6. What an inspiring story :). My son loves to hear the story of the Good Samaritan, and it is always lovely to hear modern day examples of such selfless giving. Thank you for sharing.

  7. This is a great story. And it's great that you met him through a mistext. Visiting from Wake Up Wednesday Linky Party.


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