Make Someone’s Day Today #EveryonesHurting
I had the privilege of going shopping with my mom yesterday. We bravely ventured out to the Mall of America, where parking was impossible even though it was Friday. Well, the Friday before Christmas. No wonder.
On our way there we stopped at a small-town thrift store to pick up something Mom had bought on a Facebook garage sale group. The man who sold it to her offered to meet her, but when schedules didn’t line up he said he’d just ask the people (who he knows) to hold it for her. We got there and politely started looking around. They were having a great sale and had fabulous prices, so it wasn’t long before we found things to buy.
As I browsed, I stopped behind a lady and politely waited while she investigated something and partially blocked my path. She had a puzzled look on her face when she looked at me. So, I gave her the same look as if to say, “what?” She said, “what do you suppose that is,” gesturing at an item sitting on the ground in front of her.
“I have no idea,” I said.
“Is it something to hold gift wrap, you think?” she said.
“Oh, yes I bet it is… YOU KNOW, it almost looks like a thing to make a giant Popsicle!” I joked.
With that, several people around us starting to laugh and joined in our silliness. One lady who worked there commented that it would certainly make a lovely lawn ornament. We went on browsing around the store, and ran into each other a few more times. Each time we’d add some funny idea to the creative possibilities for this piece. My mom told her not to get too close to me, whatever I have might be catchy. (hehe!)
Finally, I was ready to check out and had by that time decided to buy the “thing” since it was a great deal and I’d given my gift wrap holder away when we moved from California last summer. Everyone laughed at my purchase, and I joked, “imagine how much cool-aid it will take to fill this thing!” One lady said, “oh, I’d just use red dye.” To which I responded, “well that wouldn’t taste very good!!” She laughed and said, “well… we could use Strawberry Daiquiri.” I stopped, stunned and stared. Then I exclaimed in a low voice while pointing at her: “Oh! I LIKE YOU!”
About 5 minutes later that lady walked up to me and the lady who had originally asked about the “thing” and said, “I just want to thank you for the laugh. I’ve had one of the worst weeks of my life. I buried my mother on Monday. It’s the kindness of strangers that reminds me to be joyful this holiday season. Thank you. You just made my day. And, Merry Christmas.”
I added, “I think you mean silly strangers. You’re welcome, and Merry Christmas.”
We paid for our purchases, and I noticed that everyone in the store seemed MUCH happier, pleasant and joyful. We asked the ladies who worked there if my mom’s package was there for her to pick up. It was not. Turns out, it was at their sister store across the street. We weren’t even supposed to be there.
So, by chance I had the opportunity to brighten someone’s day just by being joyful (and a little silly!) Think of how different shopping could be this weekend if we all took a moment to reach out to another person and share Holiday joy. I’m not talking about anything major, just a little harmless fun. It might mean the world to someone. It certainly made MY day.