Tuesday, December 01, 2015 • 12:12

The Jaguar's Spot, Dec. 19

Alina Gonzalez
December 18, 2013
Clarence from It's A Wonderful Life said: "Strange, isn't it? Each man's life touches so many other lives. When he isn't around he leaves an awful hole, doesn't he?"

It's A Wonderful Life is one of the mom's favorite holiday films and I've grown accustom to watching the black and white classic every winter. The idea that just one person can make a whole difference is very fascinating to me.

We play a major role in the lives of our family and friends but it's strange to stop and realize what minor roles we play in the lives of others and the impact that creates.

I've mentioned many times that what I enjoy doing the most is helping others that can never pay me back. I kept this in mind with my wish list this year.

Early December I passed through Downtown San Diego with my mom and, as always, I noticed a lot of homeless people. At the time, many of my friends and relatives were asking what I wanted for Christmas and I really had no idea but as soon as we finished our drive I knew exactly what I wanted.

I went directly to Facebook to notify them of my wish: blankets.

I was set on collecting blankets and wrapping them up so I could hand deliver them to the homeless on Christmas Eve. Setting a high goal for myself, one I knew I could not reach on my own, I asked for as much help as possible in collecting the blankets.

The response I got was a lot better than expected.

One acquaintance from the high school offered it up to CSF and NHS as a service project, telling members they'd get two hours per blanket donated. Someone else over heard the meeting and asked me more about it so they could tell friends. I received texts and messages from friends asking if I was still collecting and, just last week, I found a bag with blankets on my desk.

I even got a package of snuggies shipped to my house from a friend who lives up north!

It brings me so much joy at the selflessness these people have and their eager willingness to donate and that shows how just one person can make the difference.

We don't know the story behind the people receiving these blankets and we don't know the last time they got a gift for the holidays; but, with the cold nights, a blanket can make all the difference.

Sometimes we are the focal point in the snapshot of someone's life, other times we're just a person captured in the background. You might never know how much you mean to a person and in what ways you impacted their life. This holiday season, a smile and an anonymous present is the greatest gift I can give and receive for myself.

I hope you and your families have a very merry Christmas, Jags. I'll see you all in the new year.

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