A Day Maker

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Making Someone's Day

On my first Mother's Day, in 2007, I started the day by taking a walk with my baby. I wanted to get some fresh air and exercise before we went to church. Big Guy was finally sleeping regularly, and had outgrown his colicky infant stage. We had mostly finished unpacking from our major move and everything seemed to be settling down. Life was good, and I just wanted to take a moment to think about it all.

That was us, on our way. We took many walks that Spring, but that one was memorable because it was Mother's Day. What seared it into my mind, though, is that as we were walking down the street, a car pulled out of a driveway and headed away from us. Then the driver stopped, and the car reversed to my side. A woman rolled down the window, smiled at me and said, "Happy Mother's Day!"

I felt so special and proud. I had already gotten lots of Mother's Day attention from my sweet husband and family, but to have a stranger give me a not-required shout out like that? Well, that was something.

It was a small gesture, but it was above and beyond what we normally experience from strangers in this rush-rush, ear buds in, eyes averted, world. Being the recipient of that small gesture has made me much more likely to say, "Happy Mother's Day" or "Happy Easter" or "Happy Thanksgiving" to anyone I meet on those particular days. It has made me more aware of others, although I still have fixed-gaze days. Still, I have often looked back on that memory and wondered if the woman's reversal was impulsive, or if she knew exactly what she was doing?

Has a stranger ever made your day?

Have you ever been the day-maker?

Do you look for ways to spread joy, even in the simplest ways, to strangers?

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10 Responses to “A Day Maker”

  1. What a great story! Something so simple and so effortless can have an extraordinary impact (and a good remidner to all of us).

    I know about colic. Our second child had it for six months after he was born - which meant no sleep for him or us.

  2. Love it! I've had the same experience and am always tring to pay it forward!

  3. Yes...I have to say...once in a while someone will greet me...someone I don't know...and I view it like a gift from God that brightens my day. Happy Mother's Day!

  4. I just have to say I enjoyed seeing AWIP...A Work In Progress...then realized I am AWIP! Love it! Thanks for the smile. ;-)

  5. I can't remember the last time I had someone do something so randomly kind like that. It inspires me to surprise a stranger in the same way. Thanks for sharing!

  6. I'd just had my hair cut---very differently than ever before. I thought it looked good, but still wasn't sure. I left the stylist and went to the grocery store. As I was scanning the crackers, a lady stopped me and raved about my haircut. I was more than sure about it then. It really impacted me; I try to pay it forward.

  7. Yes! A new haircut always needs some compliments - totally been there.

  8. Well that's it! I am saying Happy Mother's Day to a new mother!

  9. Hi Courtney, I read your post last Thursday and when I saw a stranger on a walk with her baby on Sunday, Mother's Day, I rolled down the window & yelled out "Happy Mother's Day!". Poor woman was so sleep deprived she couldn't hear me, so I backed up and told her "Happy Mother's Day" again. She smiled and lit up. My first son was oclicky for 9 months, so I appreciated when some older women would just encourage me with a smile and say, "It's worth it." I hope you had a great Mother's Day!

  10. Bonnie - That is wonderful! I would never wish colic on someone else, but those fussy babies sure do make you more grateful for the kindness of strangers. Maybe that was part of the blessing? I did have a nice Mother's Day and I hope you did, too!