Lafayette Women Share Roses, Kindness and Encouragement
As the holiday season approaches, so do the seasons of giving, and giving thanks. Two Lafayette women took that thanks to the streets to pay it forward.
Heather Mire of Lafayette was gifted with a dozen roses recently, and they really lifted her spirits. So much so that she decided to share them with others and hopefully lift their spirits in the process.
Heather and her daughter, Briannah, took the idea and ran with it. Not only did they hand out roses to random women in Broussard and Lafayette, but they also attached notes of encouragement.
I asked Heather to tell me about her thought process leading up to her and Briannah spreading some joy.
Honestly, I got the idea from a bouquet of roses that were given to me earlier in the week… I was only meant to get one but since they couldn’t find a single rose for what they needed I got a whole dozen instead.
Heather said that they were going to just hand out the roses she had received, complete with quotes of kindness and encouragement attached. But before they could get to producing the cards, the roses started to turn.
We decided to make cards with kindness quotes to attach to them and hand them out. By the time we got to do it (her schedule this weekend was a little crazy) the roses I was given got too frumpy to hand out so we decided to make more cards and go buy 2 dozen at the store and proceed with our mission.
Y'all, she went out and bought 2 dozen roses to hand out to random strangers to, hopefully, brighten their day.
Without wanting to get too personal, I hinted at the cost of the roses.
It was the best 25 dollars spent… and a memory that will last a LONG time. We definitely don’t have money to waste (as we live check to check like alot of people) but it was worth it to see people smile. So many people are struggling emotionally these days (us included) so it was a way to make us smile and also make random people feel better…
She's feeling the same pinch that most of us are feeling right now, with gas prices fairly high, inflation on everything from food to lumber, AND the approaching holidays, money is tight. Not only are most of us under a financial strain, but, as Heather points out, the emotional strain is there, too. Heather knows the impact of a kind gesture.
Even the smallest gesture can turn someone’s day completely around… and I know we did that for most of the people we encountered.
To get the job done, Heather rounded up the roses and Briannah gathered up the quotes. Then, they hit the streets.
Our initial target was the Broussard Walmart but, by the time we made it there, it wasn’t as busy as we hoped (we still walked the parking lot several times). We then walked down the strip mall next door to hand some out, and then headed to the shopping center with Home Goods on Ambassador Caffery.
When I asked Heather what kind of reactions she received from the women who they gave the flowers, she said, "they varied".
- One lady said she had never received a rose before - and she was at least 23/24 years old
- One said that she didn’t want the rose and walked away
- One said she was having a bad day and this completely turned her day around
- One sat there for at least five minutes smelling her rose and smiling ear to ear (they watched her through the window but she couldn’t see them)
- Several ladies said they had no cash on them (they thought they had to pay for them!) and got so happy when they were told the roses were free
- One lady at a restaurant was so happy to get a rose that, when they ordered their food, she totally hooked them up
- And then there were several who were just like "oh, thanks" - they were totally unphased
The one that hit hardest, Heather said, was the second woman they approached.
All the smiles made it worth it but, the one that hit us the hardest, was the second lady we approached. When we gave her the rose, she immediately started crying. She was an older lady… She grabbed my daughter and just hugged her and cried for several minutes saying thank you. We were all crying!!!
To be honest, if someone were to approach me in a parking lot with something "free", I would have my reservations. Often times it's a group of some sort offering a free item in exchange for (hopefully) a donation. I usually try to steer clear, so I understand some of the reactions. I mean, who walks around and tries to make people smile? For free? Too good to be true, right?
Heather and Briannah said that the smiles and tears from those who did appreciate the roses were well worth the $25 and the time spent on the project. When I asked her what was next, she said, "We have something up our sleeves. Coming to a parking lot near you soon!".
Keep spreading the love, Heather and Briannah!