Think back to your first day of kindergarten. How nervous were you? No matter how fabulous your backpack looked and how awesome your hair was, it was still terribly nerve-wracking to get on that big yellow schoolbus for the first time. You probably haven’t thought of that moment in a while, but think of it now. Scary, right?
Well, 5-year-old Ella Mitchell is living that moment now, and she’s terrified. She’ll be starting kindergarten soon and last week, while on the bus with her mother, Alaura Mae, in Seattle, she told her mom how nervous she was. “One of the things that came up was that she was nervous about learning to read,” Ella’s mother told Yahoo Parenting.
A stranger sitting opposite the pair overheard their conversation and decided to make Ella feel a little bit better, and scribbled down a note, passing it to Ella’s mom. “At first I was like, ‘dude, why are you giving me a note on the bus?’ but then I read it and was like ‘oh, because you’re awesome,'” Mae told Yahoo.
The note read, “When you practice letters enough, and the sounds they make, they’ll start to work together and make sense, and then you’ll be reading. When you can read, you’ll know what EVERYTHING says. All the signs, all the names, all the books, writing is EVERYWHERE if you look. Soon you’ll be able to read books, and everything there is to know is in them! You’ll be able to find out whatever you want! It probably won’t be easy, but it won’t be hard forever. It’s going to be so exciting! Good luck!”
We’re tearing up over here, TBH. Unfortunately, Mae didn’t get a good look at the man before he left, since he handed her the note as he was leaving the bus. She regretted that she didn’t get the chance to thank him. Buuuuut, Mae obviously wasn’t thinking of how small the world is thanks to social media. When she posted the note on social, she found the mystery man within 24 hours.
“A friend of mine actually saw the post and was like, ‘I’m kind of dating him,'” Mae told Yahoo.
She was able to reach out to the man and thank him for his unbelievably sweet note. “He said he struggled a lot with learning to read as a kid,” she explained, “and remembers how frustrating it was and he didn’t want her to have the same frustrations.”
Ella is now feeling much better about her future kindergarten (and reading!) adventures, and she’s very excited to have received this note — it’s “super cool.”
“. . . somebody taking five minutes of their time to encourage my daughter was encouraging to me, too,” Ella’s mother explained. ” . . . It reminded me, personally, that both being kind to others and learning to read shouldn’t be frustrating experiences. They should be things that we are all excited to share together.”
Our hearts are five times bigger. Thanks to the mystery man who took a few minutes out of his day to make a little girl feel better. Ella, we know you’ll be a reading pro in no time!