David Rosenman is a doctor in Rochester, Minnesota. But above all, he’s the father of two young children. One day, he took his daughter to a coffee shop. When they arrived David was hoping to read the paper and do some work while his daughter worked on a crochet project. But before either of them had begun, the daughter looked at her father and asked if they just could hang out. So that’s what they did instead. A little later, David went over to the counter to take out a snack to bring home to her brother. When he returned to their table, he found a mysterious note. What he read when he flipped it over prompted him to write a long Facebook post as soon as he got home. His post has now been shared by thousands, and it isn’t hard to understand why!
Here’s what he wrote:
Dear Fellow Human Beings,
This morning, at her request, I took our 9-year-old daughter to a coffee shop. She brought with her a little crocheting activity; I brought the newspaper, a notebook & pen, and my phone. This was going to be an outing not unlike others we’d had before: while sitting at the same table, we’d do our own things — she’d keep herself occupied with something, and I’d catch-up on emails, organize my week, get work done, etc. Sound familiar? Today, she made one additional request: “Daddy, can you not read the paper or doodle or check email today? Can we just be together?” I’m not trying to be melodramatic; that was her question.
So today, we were together. She showed me her yarn project. I recalled the day she was born. We compared notes about whether or not couples at other tables were on “dates” (she likes to impersonate people on dates — resting her smiling face on her hand and practicing a starry-eyed stare). She told me about her friends and their hamsters. I watched her chew her breakfast sandwich and melted a little bit as I thought about how much I love her. I wished it hadn’t taken her past experience and her courageous reaching out for me to give her the attention she so wanted and needed.
Before we left, I went up to the counter to order a take-out snack for her brother. When I returned to our table, there was a note, left face-down, in front of my seat. My daughter told me that a woman, before leaving the coffee shop, had asked her if I was her father and said that the message was for me. I looked around (nobody was there) and flipped over the paper to find the words below. This anonymous message was enough of a reinforcement for me, that I hope more people might be guided by its power and by its author’s thoughtfulness.
Please don’t wait for your child or other loved one to plead for your attention like mine did — he or she might not. Expect that no one will leave a note for you — such beauty in this world is far too rare. I invite you to share the gift of this experience with me: choose to be present today — even for just a little while — for someone you love. If you see it happen somewhere, consider leaving a note — it sure does leave an impression. -David
Here’s David’s original Facebook post, including the note he found at his table. It’s easy to understand why this really moved him.
This is the original post on Facebook from David:
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