I have something to say to that man on the beach...
I'd like to start with a story. It's a memory that still evokes powerful feelings for me. It's a story that gets to the very heart of why I started Hola Mola.
It was 2014, maybe 2015. Summer. My toddler daughter and I were on the Walk On portion of Duxbury Beach - oceanside. We had moved to Duxbury recently. There was so much to love. Of course there were all the predictable strains of relocating from out-of-state - finding our way around, forging some early friendships, finding good coffee along with the best daycare, job hunting. But there was also the beach to escape for some needed respite.
It was a gorgeous sunny day at the beach. But truth be told, my heart was crushed and heavy - reeling from a completely unpredictable heartache. Both my parents had just received terminal diagnoses with aggressive forms of cancer only months apart from each other. It was hard to breath.
My head reeled with all that lay before us - and what lay ahead. I watched my 2 year old daughter playing by herself thinking how I wished she had someone to play with in that moment.
Then something pretty wonderful happened. A nearby group of kids folded Scarlett into their fun. She was laughing and running back and forth between our blankets. I breathed a little easier. "Thank you, God. We needed this."
I would have been grateful if that was how it ended - but there was more.
Out of the corner of my eye I noticed one of the men in the group - I'm presuming a father - got up, left. He returned with ice creams from the ice cream truck. The kids in his group were excitedly crowding around him - reaching. I called Scarlett over to me - to hopefully stave off a toddler meltdown and began rifling through my bag to see what snacks I had on hand - or if I happened to have cash for the ice cream truck.
Then the man called over to me "Hey, is it OK if Scarlett has one? I bought one for her."
I was flooded with - a wave of gratitude - the kind that catches you in the throat. It was powerfully healing and I did not see it coming. I must've said something predictable like "Oh - that is so nice of you! Thank you. Scarlett, can you thank the man?".
But what I really want to say to that man today is
"You might not even remember buying an extra ice cream for that tow-headed two year-old five years ago. But her mother does. You made a difference. You were a port in a storm to a stranger. I thank you."
Profound things can happen when we show up for friends and family and neighbors and strangers. We have all experienced it - right? On both ends of the helping I am sure.
Make no mistake - your kindness can inspire, can heal, can truly save the world.
You are a point of light, a safe port.
For some reason this joy, this sense of community and inclusion, this helpfulness to others is particularly pronounced at the beach. Don't you think? I say let's amplify it and spread it beyond the sand.
Hola Mola - is a tribute to what I cherish most about this community. People helping people. Spreading joy. Protecting and enjoying the beauty of nature together. Protecting and learning from wildlife. And we aim to have that reflected in everything we do - by striving toward eco friendly practices, committing to giving back to charity, promoting kindness, and investing in our local community.
The mola mola (sunfish) sometimes arrives with an ominous shark-like dorsal fin but thankfully is actually a gentle friend. A safe port in a storm. Hola Mola. Hello, friend!