Every December we throw a holiday party for our nearest and dearest friends. The invite list is up to about 55 people and we have anywhere between 30-55 people show up each year. This past year the group was on the smaller side, which is nice because as the hostess it gave me more time to chat with my friends.
At about 9:30, the party was in full swing and I was standing in our front hallway talking to our friend Jen when a young woman I had never seen before walked through my front door. ( We had a sign on the door that indicated to our guests not to ring the doorbell but rather to just walk in. ) The woman was maybe 20 years old, dressed very casually and holding a rear view mirror. It took me a minute to register that a) I had no idea who she was and b) she has holding a part to a car.
She stood there, looking around and I walked up and said,”Hello! Merry Christmas”. Nervously she said, “Hi, um I was driving down the street and I accidentally hit a car parked in front of your house and took off this rear view mirror.” (The street we live on is very old and narrow and I can easily see how this happened.)
Jen, my friend who I was speaking with when the young woman walked in came over and said, “I think that’s the mirror to our truck.” Jen was very calm about the whole thing and went to get her husband Steve because cars are his thing. Steve, one of the most congenial humans I’ve ever met came over to our small group. “Yep, that looks like my mirror,” he said. He asked the girl to walk outside so they could look at the car together. When he came back in he told us that he thanked her for doing the right thing by trying to find the owner and he wished her a Merry Christmas and told her not to worry about it.
It takes courage to stand up and do the right thing in our day to day lives. For this young woman she had to go into a house full of strangers and own up to her mistake. Not knowing what she was walking into or who she would encounter. And it takes a certain maturity to extend kindness and forgiveness and move on with your life.
Doing the right thing, being brave, offering kindness, extending forgiveness, speaking up, and living your truth are the best parts of what it means to be human. Let’s keep that in mind in the coming months.