Like it or not we are all living in this crazy, fast paced and seemingly uncaring corporate culture. So this last Christmas it was nice to feel some genuine humanity. A little back story…
Even if you’re not from Northern California you would have to be living under a rock not to have heard about the horrific Camp Fire that wiped out the entire community of Paradise. In the weeks before Thanksgiving over 18 thousand structures burned, over 14 thousand of which were homes. Among those who lost everying were my aunt and uncle. They lost everything, I mean ash, nothing left. But in the days that followed their attitude was one of gratefulness for what they had and prayers for others. Even while evacuated and living in an RV park all they focused on was how thankful they were that their family from Paradise were safe and unharmed. Not all families were as lucky. For me they were truly an inspiration and example of focusing on what is really important in this life.
I tell that part of the story just so you know that my aunt was not crying and going on and on about her “stuff”. She barley spoke about the lifetime of precious things that were lost. My Aunt Connie is one of those people that decorates their home beautifully for all occasions. Her home was where our family would always gather for family events, yummy family dinners and crazy fun games she would just make up! Much love, laughs and joy were felt in her home. Though she didn’t complain about the loss of her things I knew her heart was very sad. In a conversation we were having I was reminiscing about all her beautiful Christmas decorations and she mentioned her beloved Brighton Christmas charm bracelet she loved to wear at the holidays.
The conversation got me thinking. Maybe I would buy her a Brighton bracelet this Christmas. Then the thought began to grow. I reached out to her daughter, Heidi, and with her help our plan was hatched! With no home of her own Aunt Connie would be at Heidi’s house for Christmas this year. What if we reached out to friends and family and each one bought a single charm for her. Maybe we could fill up a whole bracelet. Wouldn’t that be a lovely Christmas morning. I could just see her opening each precious little packages of love. Every one reminding her of how many people are thinking about her and want to say how much she is loved.
Well as you can imagine everyone we reached out to wanted to join in. In the weeks before Christmas Heidi was busy receiving, wrapping and hiding away charms for Christmas morning. When the day came I wasn’t able to be there but I’ve heard the morning was filled with surprise and smiles and many alligator tears of joy!
This is where the corporate part of my story comes in. When I reached out to my Aunt Vicki about the bracelet charm idea she was eager to participate. She had some issues with the gift page I set up on Brighton’s website so she called in to get some help with her order. Being the friendly person my Aunt Vicki is she explained to the customer service person what we were all doing. Guess what showed up in the mail from the customer service team at Brighton… a beautiful Christmas charm and a lovely note signed individually from their whole team. A beautiful and sweet reminder that the “corporate culture” is really just people. People like you and I. People who would take a moment out of their busiest time of year to say, we don’t know you but we want you to know we care. As for me I’m going to take a lesson from the team at Brighton…whenever I have an opportunity I’m going to reach out, take a moment no mater how busy I am and let people know there are people who care, I care.
So I’m taking a moment out of my busy day today to say – Thank you Brighton for taking the opportunity to show you care about my Aunt Connie who is a light that lights up our world.