Sometimes the simplest of gestures are the ones we remember the most.
Today was an especially stressful day. Our Kickstarter campaign has reached it’s second plateau. It is now sitting at 25% of its goal and there were no new backers today. We needed another spike in traffic and I had no ideas about how to make that happen. I frustratedly decided to change lanes and spend the day reaching out to refugee organizations to schedule donations, volunteering, and welcoming. I set up office in Chapters/Starbucks and got to work making phone calls, pacing back and forth, and taking notes on the laptop.
After a couple hours and some great conversations, I decided to pack up my remote office and head home. As I was packing up, the young man beside me removed his headphones and reached into his pocket. Looking at me, he extended a bright red fifty dollar bill.
“I want you to have this for your campaign,” he said generously.
I paused for a moment, awestruck at his kindness. I slowly realized that he must have overheard my phone calls. I stepped forward and crouched to meet his gaze. He extended his donation further. Sensing my confusion, he continued to explain his actions.
“I think what you are doing is amazing, I want to help.”
“I… I.. Thank you..” I slowly managed to reply, feeling the time slow down. “I can’t tell you how much it means to me that you just did that…”
“Would you like me to send you some of our scarves?” I asked, trying to find a way to repay his kindness.
“I don’t need that, but thank you.” he replied.
“I can take a picture for Instagram if you like?” I asked, reaching for my phone.
He paused a moment to look at me. His face softened, he deepened his gaze, and reaching his hand out towards me, signalled that he expected nothing in return.
After all the frustration I had gone through, the fear, the anxiety and stress of failure all evaporated instantly. I hit a wall of feels at full speed. My eyes welled up with tears, and I felt the need to leave before they turned into tears.
“Thank you so much,” I said slowly nodding my head as I stepped backwards. “It means a lot.”
I turned to walk away with his $50 clutched tightly in my hand.
“We need more people like you!” he exclaimed as I was walking away.
‘No we don’t’ I thought to myself. ‘we need more people like you.’