Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Wonderfully Different

First, check out this link.  Two minutes of fabulous!!!

I will be the first to admit, I have seen the above link many times.  I am sharing it today because the most beautiful message is shared in this clip.  It's short, but powerful.  Oh yes, it's definitely about autism, but it's about so much more than that to me.  Each time I watch the video, my eyes fill with tears and my excitement, my adrenaline, soar.  The young man in the video, Jason McElwain, has autism, but doesn’t stop a bit short, with his performance, on the basketball court.

The coach is awesome; from my perspective, he ROCKS!  The coach decides for the last game of the season to have Jason suit up for the game, so he can feel what it is like to be in a jersey.  Then, surprisingly, the coach takes things one step further and puts Jason in the game.  Listen to the coach.... "Dear God, let's just get him a basket."  The coach could have left Jason sitting on the sideline, but he took a leap of faith and he wanted Jason to have this experience.  I believe this coach changed Jason's life, lifting his spirit, just by giving him these four little minutes!

There is much to be said for this basketball team too.  Did you notice, after Jason missed two baskets, his teammates continued to give him the ball?  I believe, the imperfection created an opportunity and showed us the true character of the people, advancing Jason, while changing the lives of everyone there.  Jason's teammates and the crowd go completely wild.  Jason shares, “he is used to feeling different, but never this different, never this wonderful.”

Can you remember the last time you felt wonderful?  Often, I find myself so caught up in the mission of seeking solutions for Alyssa, I feel more stressed and tired, than wonderful.  I might be guilty of taking it all too seriously.  You see, the coach could have taken the score of the game so seriously that Jason may not have got this opportunity, this chance of a lifetime, to step into the game and score the way he did.  I admire the coach for setting aside all the possible reasons that could have held him back from taking the plunge and putting Jason in the game. We are all on teams, whether it be at our work place, a sport, or even being a family.  I would like to say, there might be something wonderful about passing out water bottles and cleaning up the sweat, of whatever team you are on, because later the reward could be something sensational and offer a new outlook on life!

In today's society, it seems we can easily get caught up in the details, while missing out on the experience.  Just think, by taking a leap, we may all be on the cusp of a "wonderfully different" day.  Furthermore, our leaps could change many lives, more than just our own.  I would like to use the experience from this video to encourage one another to work more towards lifting each others spirits!!  On the same note, I want to help Alyssa enjoy her experiences, while allowing her to be different.  I hope Alyssa will get many chances to feel "some kind of wonderful", offered up by the treasured people in her life, those who wish, like we do, for her experiences, and spirit, to blossom, much like the vibrant flower she is!  

Thank you for reading and have a great week!  Angie

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