Image via WikipediaBy Marci Bryant
Recently, I met a 4 year old little boy. His name was Jonathan, which means "my friend". I was so inspired by him that I had to write it down on paper to fully ascertain what I actually received from him.
He was sitting in a wheel chair. He had no use of his legs (as they were strapped down to the wheel seat). He had limited use of one hand and the other hand he did not move at all.
Initially, I was not sure if he could speak, but because he followed me with his eyes, whenever I moved around the room, I asked his name from one of the other teachers, as we moved from the classroom to the playground.
Once we, the special needs students, and teachers were all situated outside, I walked over to Jonathan and said hello and called him by name. I did not expect a response but I got a big surprise. Not only did he say hello back in a very strained voice which seemed to take much effort to do, he proceeded to have a conversation with me.
He asked me what was "that" hanging around my neck (it was my employee I.D. badge and my car keys); but again I made an assumption that he might not know that so I tried to find some small word that he might understand but finding none, I told him it was my badge for work with my picture on it. In response he responded, "oh, you work here?" "Well today I do", was my reply. "Where's Miss Ruddy?" he asked (I was substituting for his teacher). "I don't know" was my reply. Then came the question, "where do you live?", I told him. "You have a lot of keys on your neck?", "well yes, Jonathan, I suppose I do". "Do you have a car?" , "Yes, I have a car." Is it here, can I see it?", "What color is it?" "Will you take me for a ride in it?"
You get the picture! There was one lucid question after another and they were all in keeping with a logical flow of regular conversation. I was amazed. I remember asking one of the other teachers on duty, are you sure that he's only 4 years old. She said he was just under 3 weeks from his 5th birthday, but at of this day, he was still only four years old. I could not believe that at first glance I wasn't even sure that he could communicate at all. I learned a very important lesson,..looks and assumptions can be very deceiving and misleading.
I recall leaving this experience very encouraged and very humbled. Many of us don't have nearly the obstacles that children like Jonathan has, yet we moan and groan and find all kind of excuses to justify why we are not further along in our lot in life.
It's always somebody else's fault that we didn't get the opportunity or it's that unfortunate circumstance that just arrived at our door. We don't always take responsibility to learn what we should and put it to good use. So many of today's adults are slothful and careless with life's blessings; don't you be one of them.
You can do so much more and be so much more. Why not add up your assets, minimize your liabilities, and make up your mind to be better today that you were yesterday. Create a plan and follow it. Get a life coach if you have to. Visit www.findyourplc.com for additional information.
If Jonathan, who knows very little about what life has to offer, yet he is already living like he isn't handicapped, he will go far. Because despite his physical limitations, he, at such a young age has put no limitations on his mind. Biblically speaking, it is written, that "a child shall lead" ... let's follow Jonathan's example and take the limitations off and live life to the fullest.
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