The Stranger on the Lawnmower Is the Best Part of This Photo


What do you see when you look at this picture?

Look at the whole scene… I will paint a different picture for you than the one you are looking at.

It was a crisp fall afternoon. The sun shining down and warming the air, and leaves danced in the breeze across the sidewalk. My son, Beast, and I got ready to walk to school. Hand in hand, we approached the sidewalk. I heard some kind of machinery as we got closer to the school. I figured it was the guys working on the sidewalk. Beast would be excited to see the machines working! Getting closer, I realized it wasn’t the construction crew working — it was a lawnmower, and it was mowing the area where we wait for a para to get Beast for Lunch Bunch.

Walking up the sidewalk and getting closer to the mower, Beast leaned his head into my side and wrapped my arm around the back of his head, covering his ear — a head hug to block out the noise.

Creeping toward the door, Beast stopped several times. He needed reassurance and coaxing to move forward.

Suddenly the noise got softer… The gentleman must have noticed how distressed Beast was, because he pulled as far away as he could and parked the mower! He wasn’t upset when we stood outside the door waiting for seven minutes. He wasn’t rushing us. He didn’t start the mower back up when we didn’t go into the school right away. He waited until the door was fully closed and I was walking back toward my van to start mowing again!

I told him thank you, like, 10 times, explaining that Beast has autism and loud noises really scare him.

What he did was extremely appreciated. He didn’t have to, but he did.

He could’ve ignored what he saw, but he didn’t.

He noticed a child in distress because of what he was doing, and he stopped!

A version of this post originally appeared on Finders Seekers on Instagram. Follow this journey on Finders Seekers.

The Mighty is asking its readers the following: Describe the moment a stranger — or someone you don’t know very well — showed you or a loved one incredible love. If you’d like to participate, please send a blog post to [email protected] Please include a photo for the piece, a photo of yourself and 1-2 sentence bio. Check out our Share Your Story page for more about our submission guidelines.

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