My Friend Robert (part 1)

My friend Robert has inspired me to do many things . I wrote a blog about “The Revolution for the Disabled”.  I have  started writing a children’s book series that encourages special needs and disabled children (Robert is embodied in the main character).  I have decided to find ways to serve the disabled community. And- I am  going to post regular blogs about my friend Robert.

Robert is a tenacious man. Cerebral palsy may have been the source of much anguish as a child. As an adult, he takes it in stride. Robert was never supposed to live as long as he has, he shouldn’t have been able to drive a car, own his own home, or be the visionary behind a program for disabled children. He would say it is Jesus Christ who gives him his strength, purpose, drive.

There are many things Robert missed out on as a child. One of the things he missed was the opportunity to play a game he loves – baseball.  He is working double time to try to find ways for disabled children to live their dreams.

I hope in the future you will hear about  a character – Coach Cooper. He is a mini-cooper who understands what it is like to be different, to be left out. He is encouraged to look for ways to be a friend to others. His first “new” friend is a boy with cerebral palsy. Wheelchairs don’t stop CC. He and his new friends start a new baseball league.

My friend Robert has big dreams for this little car. I’m glad I’m along for an exciting ride.

Our team welcomes comments on how disabled children can be served and represented.

Jesus today

If Jesus were living among us today

what would He be what would He say

some think he would just fit in

corporate or  techy focused within

others  think he just wouldn’t care

after so much time there’s nothing to spare

Because of our selves we expect him to be

completely different than Jesus of the first century

He wasn’t welcome then

wouldn’t be welcome again

one thing I know

he wouldn’t stop loving or being on the go

you would see him with the sick

see him on the streets

teaching  children in villages

hearing every  heart beat

He would not be accepted

any more than before

 

the raindrop- for my friend Andrew

What do you see in the rain

a drop of H2O

maybe a lesson in science

no place for your mind to go

It comes from the clouds you see

returning to  earth once more

all just part of a cycle

useless info to store

In Andrew’s world the rain has life

there’s color and action and more

its big its small

its filled with light galore

streams, rivers, oceans

things that swim things that fly

some of the  things that he sees

enjoying this gift from the sky

Andrews eyes see more in a drop

something because he believes

he goes far beyond where our mind stops

drops coming together with those from afar

I love Andrews view

it opens my mind

to something unseen

something reserved for the few

Being Thankful

Thanksgiving-what is it all about anyway??? Has thankfulness become passe? Families always used to give thanks at the dinner table. Who sits long enough to give anything? When we say the word thanks, we use it like we use “how are you?” It’s become a  word that tumbles off our lips with little or no meaning. Is that what Thanksgiving has become?

Why do we celebrate Thanksgiving? To remember something that happened at the beginning of our country’s history? Are we looking back  at the lives that others lived so that we could have a better one? Do we celebrate because our employer gave us the day off and it would be a waste to not eat from the feast?

How can we celebrate Thanksgiving? This has been a difficult year for our world, our country, our friends and families. There are things we can reflect on that we can truly be thankful for. Are you alive? Be thankful. Do you have a job? Be very thankful? Do you have friends and or family you will be spending the holidays with? You are blessed! Spend a few moments this week reflecting on things you are thankful for. If you are a writer, write them down.

My family is having an untraditional Thanksgiving. We will be providing a children’s program for an Indonesian conference. I am thankful. We will be surrounded by gracious people, in a beautiful setting, eating amazing Indonesian food (hopefully). We will come away at the end of the weekend richer for the experience. Yes we will miss the traditional time around our dining room table with twenty-five of our close friends and family. This year the table will have hundreds of new friends around it.

Enjoy your holiday – Be thankful!!!!

The Show – a backstage perspective

“The house is open – quiet in the wings.” “My mic is cutting in and out and we have 5 minutes to curtain.” “My costume needs repairing and  I’m on for the next song.” “I hope I can sing” she croaks.” “I wasn’t able to change my entire costume for that last scene.”

When you go to a live production, you see the drama unfold on stage. You see the beautiful sets, the extravagant costumes, the well choreographed dances, the story unfolding.  Some of us get a glimpse of another show.

Today was my daughter’s opening show of a musical called HONK. Being involved in theater for nigh on two decades, I’ve experienced my share of D R A M A.  My favorite place? Backstage. What is it about the backstage that is intriguing you may ask? I love the buzz ,the  excitement, the unknown. This world begins  the moment  the sets are “loaded in” to the end when the last prop sadly leaves on the truck and the theater is left –  empty.

Imagine the actor the first time he is attached to the cables that will suspend him above the set. The look on his face is anything but assured. We appreciate the hours the makeup  artist spends  transforming faces. We peer into make-up in time to see  the young man  smile at his well aged sixty-year-old face.  Costuming has their job cut out for them.  They work at making padding look authentic. Secretly, we smile as the actress scrunches her face trying to adjust her bigger body. The crews’ faces look anything but delighted as they know tonight will be another “late one.” The wonder is  like Christmas morning as newly made props appear.

There are  moments that  only those faithfully dressed in black can recall. Actors and actresses hydroplaning into the crews’ arms because of a fountain spill. Hoping the blood doesn’t rush to the actors’ heads too quickly as they hang upside down off the barricade. Watching the lead actress pull off a perfect scene with the knowledge that her costume is inside out. Crossing fingers that the motor doesn’t fail before the last turn of the stage.

Those of us who know the words to every line and every dance step appreciate it when an actress can jump in right after a botched line. Loving it when the lead hits a perfect high C; the note that has been dangling just above her range. Watching the male lead, who had never danced before this show, pull off a perfect dance routine.

The echo of the applause has an added richness as it permeates the wings and the empty dressing rooms. The radiant looks of half-dressed, smeared faced performers after a phenomenal performance is payment for a long night.

The sounds, the looks, the rewards are numerous all because we worked back stage.

Losing someone

My nephew just lost his maternal grandmother. It’s always sad to lose a family member but it’s harder when that person raised you, loved you, made you who you are. It hit home for me because I too was raised by my paternal grandmother. She loved me, poured her heart and soul into my life. I am a compassionate person, a mother because my grandmother put herself in me.

We can look at loss two ways.  “Ive lost it it’s done, I’ll grieve , be sad,  time removes all pain”. I can look at the love from that person as something that can live on in me. I can look at it as a gift; a gift that was entrusted into my care.  Ever run a relay? There are four runners, each runner has his part to play. Passing the baton at the end of the segment is the runner’s job as well. When the baton of life is passed on to me what will I do with it? Run my heart out or wait for the feeling to pass. When my grandmother passed away, I felt a need to carry on for her. I have been running my heart out.  I believe one of my strongest rooters, in the stands, is my grandmother. When I finish my leg of the race, I hope there will be someone to pass that baton to.

My nephew is in grief now. I hope that as a little time goes on he can smile, take up that baton, and run with all his heart.This life is like a grueling race. The race requires  energy, sacrifice, pain, and sometimes disappointment. The alternative is sit this one out. I’m all for getting a little grimy and running the race.

Oremus

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