Why I Sat Alone in My Car and Cried

Thursday, December 20, 2012
An unexpected and beautiful thing happened yesterday that I want to share.

Vic hurried home from work so he could take the kids Christmas shopping for me and give me an evening alone. (That, in itself, is a Christmas gift).

I happily cleaned my house and got more done in 30 minutes than I had all week. When the gang finally got back home, Peter marched into the kitchen carrying a large TJ Maxx bag with a giant grin on his face.


Out of the bag he pulled this loopdey loop Hot Wheels track thing. I was so confused as to why Vic bought if for him and why he was actually letting Peter see it. It wasn't on our list of gifts for him and why would he buy something so close to Christmas and let him actually play with it?

Vic proceeded to tell me that a cute Philippino woman bought it for Peter.

Really? REALLY? Why?

As you can imagine, Peter was pointing to it over and over in the toy section saying, "I love dat. I want dat. Can I get it for Christmas, Dad?"

This woman walked to the register, bought it, then brought it back to Peter.

"I have a 4 year-old son in the Philippines who I can't be with this Christmas. It makes me happy to buy this for him."

So. Tender.

As the boys were setting up their new treasure (it's actually really cool and does three full spiral upside down thingamajigs then launches off a jump at the end), it was my turn to go out and do some shopping. (Can't tell you how handy it is to have the Park City Outlet Mall precisely 1.5 miles from your house).

My first stop was Old Navy. While waiting in line to make my purchase, I was behind a little Hispanic family. They were literally counting their coins to buy their clothes. Their youngest daughter kept pointing at a Hello Kitty toy and crying. I could tell she was exhausted (it was 9 p.m. and the store was closing). At first, I just smiled and thought, "Oh, I've been there with my kids."

And then it dawned on me--if this cute little woman, a stranger, could buy my Peter a gift, why can't I do the same for this little girl?

They finished paying for their clothes and I hurried to the register with the Hello Kitty watch and said, "I want to buy this for them."

I handed it to the little girl and immediately she stopped crying. She looked up at me with her big brown eyes and curly brown hair and smiled.

"Feliz Navidad!" I said.

She gave me a little hug and went out into the cold to pile into the car with her family.

I finished my transaction and that's when I got in my car and started sobbing. I called Vic right away and told him what happened.

"Thank you for doing that!" Vic said in a shaky voice.

"Thank the lady who bought Peter the car track."

I finally let all my tears for the families in Newton pour out. I cried because my Lucy is not with us this Christmas and Peter keeps saying he wants to go to be with her. "Is it very far away?" I cried because the ripple effect of one person's kindness, all within an hour, was so beautiful and overwhelming.

It wasn't about the things, the toys, but just the awareness and the kindness and the love. It kind of knocked the wind out of me for a second.

The little girl was Lucy's age. It felt so wonderful to buy something for her.

That's why I sat alone in my car on a cold night and cried. For the families in Connecticut. For my family. For your family. For love and beauty and kindness. And for the true meaning of Christmas.


  1. Thankyou, Molly...what a beautiful turn of events for everyone. What a great reminder...of many things. Have a good Christmas! Love you! ( Give Vic a hug for me, ok?!)

  2. And that's why I'm sitting at my computer crying at 10:59 pm.

    I love that woman and I love you.

  3. Oh Molly, this is such a beautiful story that made me cry at the kitchen table.
    What an amazing thing it was for the lady to do for Peter--not because of the toy, like you said, but for what it represents. And that you turned around and did the same thing.
    Your family and you are in my prayers, especially during this tender time of the year.

  4. Thank you for sharing this beautiful Christmas story. So much goodness and light still in this world. It gave me goosebumps. Giving is truly the key to true happiness and joy.

  5. I'm so glad she did, and you did, and you told us. xo

  6. So tender. Love that you shared this!

  7. Lovely! Thank you for sharing!

  8. Such a sweet post. Made me cry. Thank you for sharing the true meaning of Christmas. Loves.

  9. What wonderful experiences! Thank you for sharing this.

    Merry Christmas to you and your family!

  10. "And for the true meaning of Christmas." ...... you said that right. How Beautiful.


  11. Thank you for this. Beautiful. It's amazing how much one person can make a difference. I've always thought you were an amazing person with limitless amounts of light to pour out onto others. I'm so glad I was able to know you and spend time with you even if it was just for a short while on the mission. Loves....

  12. Miss Molly... thank you for sharing.


  13. Thanks for sharing, puts things in perspective. It even made me tear up and I rarely do.....

  14. Thanks for sharing this sweet series of events:) Merry Christmas!

  15. You most deffinately have a way with words! :) Merry Christmas!!

  16. That all would make me cry too....makes me want to go buy a present for a little boy who is 3 years old...your ability for words is amazing. Thanks for sharing! Merry Christmas!

  17. A beautiful story Molly. Thank you for sharing it. We, too, have been reciptients of kindness this year, from someone we don't know. It is so good to know there is goodness and love in this world.

  18. amazing post.. you continued the crying tradition and made me cry too!

  19. Ah this story right here, that you so kindly shared with us all, is what I call the "true meaning" of Christmas. We need to all start thinking about what is the reason for this holiday. Beautiful post Molly, it truly is and you made me cry too! Thanks for being so open with your feelings, it helps us all to be better :) Merry Christmas To Your Family!

  20. I'm so glad I was able to read this tonight.

  21. This post was beautiful, thank you for sharing! I just happened upon your blog and started following you. I am loving your blog and the story of your sweet Lucy's legacy. You are an inspiration. Thank you for reminding us of the true meaning of Christmas and Christ-like love.

  22. I hope your Christmas is bright and filled with lots of light, joy, love, and peace. Those random acts of kindness is definitely what the Savior's love is all about. Thanks for sharing those two acts of love and for being a good example to all of us. Have a wonderful holiday season!!

  23. Wow! That's awesome! Way to go, Molly!


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