Tuesday, August 26, 2014

It's all about Perspective

This morning there was an older man, slightly stooped over by age, walking slowly down the street pushing a baby stroller. He seemed very protective of the stroller, angling his body defensively from those passing, and I found myself thinking about how sweetly protective of the child(a Grandchild, I was thinking) inside he must be.

 As he came closer I was surprised to see, not a child as I had first suspected, but all of his worldly belongings inside the stroller. When passing me, his wild eyes and disheveled appearance spoke of mental illness and exhaustion. I felt deeply saddened and wondered about his story and how, instead of being a charming Grandfather, he became a frightened homeless man. How easy it is, from far away, to see someone and assume that all is well when, in truth, they are hanging on by a thread.

Smile at a stranger today, Friends. Hold a door from a mother with her hands full. Give a homeless person a dollar. It really is that simple to change the world.

Shine on, Dear Ones, shine on.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

The Blue eyed boy

I met a little boy with Down syndrome today. I gazed upon his sweet face and told his parents how adorable he was. 

The parents froze.

There was a pregnant pause.

It was a pause that I've experienced many times in my career working with special needs children. A complete cessation of breath as parents freeze and take a moment in which to weigh the compliment-to measure the heft of it and decide if the giver was being truthful or if the words were just a cover for that awkward moment when they realized that the child wasn't what they had first expected.

And then....


 that blissful moment when they see the purity in the truth of my words.

The sigh of relief.

The lowering of shoulders that had been prepared for defensiveness. The gratitude for such a simple thing as having someone else see their child for who they are, not who society thinks they should be.

So we smiled and grinned at the little boy in tandem, taking in his singular beauty.

 His smile lit up the room and my entire day.

Let us shine brightly as this little boy with the bright blue almond-shaped eyes, Friends. If it is at all possible.

Shine on, Dear Ones, Shine on.