“The soul becomes dyed with the color of its thoughts.”
– Marcus Aurelius
On a cold, gray winter day I walked into a shopping mall with a gift. It was the gift of color.
Our local mall is sponsoring the Sharing Tree, a way for people to help reach a child this Christmas. Children from disadvantaged situations make their Christmas wish and the organization makes up a heart shaped “wish” with the child’s name. Shoppers can pick from one of the many wishes and buy the gift for them. The Sharing Tree was put together by Lifeworks which does mental health counseling and helps homeless families and teens.
When we went to the mall on Friday, we visited the Sharing Tree and looked through all the wishes eventually picking up one for a teenager who wanted a new paint set. My son and I then looked all over the mall but found nothing, so I made a point the next day to drive to JoAnn’s Fabrics and buy a nice acrylic set and some paper.
Today it felt good to walk into the mall, past all the shoppers and present the gift to two volunteers who were working at the Sharing Tree table. One worked with Lifeworks and it turns out that the other was an AmeriCorps volunteer. Sadly, I couldn’t get either to pose for a photo, but it was fun to talk for a few minutes.
I walked back out of the mall into that cold, gray winter day hoping someone’s Christmas would be a little more colorful.
Shared a gift with a child I didn’t know, and attended a parent’s night at my daughter’s middle school. With luck, what I learned tonight will help me give her a gift as well, the gift of a better education.