The women at the airport formed a circle around them, and a miracle happened.
Push aside those stories about crying toddlers and annoyed passengers on planes that we’ve surely read in our feeds, and try this one on for size instead. The outcome of these stories isn’t always a negative one. A recent incident involving a toddler disrupting an airport full of people is simply about kindness, and it’s gone wild.
In early February, Beth Bornstein Dunnington, an author, editor and actress, was at LAX waiting to board a plane to Portland, when she witnessed a scene we can probably all relate to, and probably lived at one point or another: an exasperated pregnant mom trying to wrangle her melting-down toddler. The toddler had completely lost it — lying on the floor screaming, refusing to get on the plane, too chaotic to be picked up by his mom, who by this time was on the ground herself, crying.
“Then, this gorgeous thing (I’m crying just writing this) … the women in the terminal, there must have been six or seven of us, not women who knew each other, approached and surrounded her and the little boy and we knelt down and formed a circle around them. I sang ‘The Itsy Bitsy Spider’ to the little boy … one woman had an orange that she peeled, one woman had a little toy in her bag that she let the toddler play with, another woman gave the mom a bottle of water. Someone else helped the mom get the kid’s sippy cup out of her bag and give it to him.”
The Facebook post was initially liked over 18,000 times — but that was nothing compared to the exposure it got when some mom blogs picked it up, eventually landing on huge media outlets like USA Today. Since then the story has spread like wildfire — a testament to how much we all “crave kindness” these days, Bornstein Dunnington wrote in an update.
“Women, and a simple act of kindness towards a woman and her toddler who needed help, which seems to have struck a nerve because we are so craving kindness these days. It was not at all heroic, although it felt very meaningful to me at that time… getting that young mother and her son on that plane.”
Bornstein Dunnington said one of the most encouraging types of comments she’s received is from people who say they are always on the lookout for people like this in airports and other public places who need help — so they can jump in and be of service. If that’s not the best thing I’ve heard today I don’t know what is! How I wish Bornstein Dunnington and those women had helped me those similar times at the grocery store, doctor’s office, checkout line … And how I hope I can be like one of those women everywhere I go.
You can read her full post below:
"Since you are here...
…we'd like to have one more word with you. More and more of you are reading Aleteia, and we are excited to be a part of your life! Our team proves its mission every day by working to encourage and inspire Christian life. We want our articles to be accessible to everyone, free of charge — but quality journalism has a cost...more than ads can cover. To continue our efforts to nourish and inspire our Catholic family, your support is invaluable.