This is Ron with your Motivational Message:
Sometimes life dumps on you and you have two choices: you can be negative or positive, bitter or better, give it up or pick it up. This was my message to nearly two hundred eighth grade students at North Albany Middle School yesterday. As I delivered my 45 minute speech, I was pleased by the attentiveness of the students as they related to my stories. I could sense their struggles as I observed their body language.
After the assembly I sat with the students to chat. The teens surrounded me with their cell phones to take “selfies” and group photos. They told me their own stories which confirmed to me, the need for encouraging presentations like mine. One young lady shared her heart and her troubles, telling me that the speech made her laugh and cry. She said, “You can ask my friends, I don’t cry.” She had identified with my statement about our “emotional wheelchairs” the most and expressed how very grateful she was for the presentation.
I left with a smile on my face, realizing that this old guy can still reach the heart of teens.
I lost my smile, however, later in the day when life dumped on me. I had taken Gracie to her gymnastics class and was sitting with the other parents when a call came in. A man was asking about my wheelchair-accessible van, which my caregiver had driven to Fred Meyer. I immediately felt anxious—what could it be? Was he calling because there was an accident? There were so many scenarios. I didn’t expect him to say what he said next, though. He had witnessed a large suitcase fall out of the trunk of my van and into the Fred Meyer parking lot and was now calling to return it to me. Luckily, the suitcase had an old airport tag on it with my address and phone number! The man was even so kind as to meet me at the building the gymnastics class was held in to drop it off. I felt so relieved. The suitcase was the one I take to speaking engagements and had hundreds of dollars of merchandise in it. It would have been a great loss.
It’s amazing how bad situations can turn around so quickly. God bless the kindness of strangers. This Good Samaritan brought the smile back to my face.
Speaking of smiles, I want to thank you, my friend, for your prayers and support. You make it possible for me to give presentations like the one at North Albany. You allow me to reach the youth in our public schools, and send a little positivity their way.
To your inspiration,