For many of us, the holiday season is one of the most joyous times of the year. For others, it’s just another date on a calendar. This past Christmas, Paty Regalado wasn’t able to visit her family. What started to feel like a lonely and down time of the year for her ended up turning into a special and memorable time where she was able to help others and grow closer to her coworkers.
Paty Regalado has lived in Nashville for 4 years now. While she’s used to seeing her family for Christmas, she decided to stay by herself in Nashville due to financial reasons. She knew it was the right decision, but she struggled with it as she’s always been with her family for the holidays. While she was driving around one day, it occurred to her that so many other people probably won’t get to see their families either—some people may not even have family to see at all. Paty said, “I was filled with empathy and decided to make a plan to go spread love to those who might need some love that day.”
For work, Paty helps empower others to reach their full potential. No stranger to helping and supporting others, she knew there was an opportunity for kindness in the holidays. She, with the help of some coworkers who were also staying in town, decided to bake muffins to pass out in their community. Along with each muffin they wrote a special note of encouragement. They started baking on Christmas Eve and spent Christmas day finishing up the baking and writing the notes.
Once everything was set to go, the group of friends went to pass out the muffins. They started at the Nashville Rescue Mission and passed out muffins to people on the street. After that they went to the mission in Germantown where David, one of the people in the group, sang songs. Paty mentioned, “That was one of the best moments of that day when most of the people decided to join and sing together.”
After the missions, the group went to two different fire stations. The firemen and women were so appreciative that a group of 20-somethings would take time on Christmas to show them that they care and hope they have a Merry Christmas. They even let them all take a trip down the fire pole!
Overall, Paty was so incredibly happy and overwhelmed to give back during the holidays. She mentions that she was thankful for the obstacles that kept her in Nashville, because those obstacles ended up leading her to an unforgettable experience. What seemed like bad news ended up being an incredible holiday full of love, selflessness, and kindness. The friends all decided that they would like to make a tradition out of this and continue doing it year after year.
“I have never felt so blessed and filled with joy with serving others and seeing their faces light up.”
The moral of the story is that we all have the power to create kindness in our own lives, and kindness in other peoples’ lives. Paty says, “When we refresh others, it can refresh you.” Think about a time when you’ve felt down or alone—was there something you could have done to change your perspective? Next time you feel this way, look for an opportunity to be kind.
Read Paty's original post here.