Facebook page “Love What Matters” posted a heartbreaking thank you letter to the Applebee’s employees in Summersville, West Virginia on Sunday by a family who experienced terrible loss. According to the post, which has already garnered over 5k likes and 500 shares, a husband and wife went to Applebee’s for lunch during what they described as the “worst three days of our lives.”
The day before, unbeknownst to any of the Applebee’s employees, these parents’ lives changed forever when they lost their 6-week-old baby girl to an unknown illness. They stopped at Applebee’s to try and eat what would be their first meal in days.
Once inside the restaurant, the mother began sobbing and went to the restroom to try to compose herself. According to the letter to the Applebee’s staff, the mother wrote, “One of your managers just happened to be in there. She asked if I was alright and patiently let me spill my soul to her. She let me cry to her and tried to comfort me. She made me feel better enough to return to my seat.”
If that wasn’t enough, another manager offered condolences and a hug upon hearing the awful news. When the family finally finished their meal and asked for the check, Applebee’s covered their lunch and instead offered them a note which read:
The mother concluded her letter to Applebee’s saying, “I wanted to thank all of them from the bottom of my heart. It’s such a small gesture that brought much needed light to a period of profound darkness in our lives. Their compassion will never be forgotten.”
Reading this story reminded me that we never really know what struggles people are going through. Everyone is going through something. It may not be as significant as the loss of a child, but showing kindness and empathy to people at all times is such an important lesson to remember. You never know when your words or a gesture (however small) could make all the difference.
Unless you have experienced this sort of loss, none of us will ever really know the hell these parents are going through. Their lives have been irrevocably changed. Nothing can be done to bring back their precious baby girl. Even so, the employees on staff at Applebee’s that day helped alleviate their burden for a short time and showed that sharing your pain with others, even strangers, can be a healing experience.
It also reminds us that with every ugly news story out there which shows the horrible side of human nature, there are still good people in this world.
And they deserve to be recognized.More On