I watched a fifteen-year-old boy with cerebral palsy hit a baseball. It was something else. His father pitched full-speed from the mound, just like a major-leaguer. The boy held the bat with unsteady hands.
The kid smacked it so hard it made the fence. His mother cheered in the bleachers. So did I.
The fifteen-year-old didn’t even run. He started to cry. So did his daddy. They held each other in the batter’s box for awhile.
“You don’t understand,” said his mother. “They’ve been working on just HOLDING a bat for years. He NEVER gets a hit.”
He did today.
Tanya—I meet her in the Walmart. She has six children with her. The oldest is pushing the cart. Two are in the basket. Three follow.
These are not her biological children.
Tanya’s been fostering for a long time. She used to do it with her husband—he died several years ago.
Her husband had been raised in the foster system. He had been passionate about fostering.
“We used to spend every dime we made on these kids,” she says. “My husband would say, ‘If you only knew how hard it is growing up feeling like nobody wants you. I know what it’s like.’”
After his death, she carried on his tradition. And even though she’s unmarried, she welcomes new kids by the handful.
Yolanda. She is from Ecuador. She was a victim of human-trafficking. She was saved. Since then, she’s made a new life for herself. She is about to become a certified personal fitness trainer.
As part of her rehabilitation, she started spending time in gyms. She enjoyed it so much that she decided to make it her profession.
“I LOVE working out,” says Yolanda. “I take out all my angry thoughts on these machines.”
Yolanda has a boyfriend. They just got engaged last month. He is from Mexico. He is a Pentecostal preacher.
“I’m always believing,” she says. “Even when I was prisoner, you know, without hope, I never stop making prayers to El Señor to ‘please, save me.’”
She can bench press three of me.
Anyway, you probably have a television in your home. I do.
And maybe you’re like me. Maybe you wake up in the mornings and turn it on. Maybe you flip channels. Maybe you see talking heads in business suits.
The same ones who repeat the same headlines. They roll footage that will sour a healthy stomach. They talk so loud their faces turn red.
They talk about tragedies, plane crashes, controversies, murders. And they talk about the same villians until they’ve worn out the names.
And if you ask me, it’s a shame.
Because if the suits who pretend to be broadcast journalists could only shake hands with a widowed foster mother, or get one firm hug from Yolanda.
Or watch a fifteen-year-old boy with CP hit home runs in a ballpark. I believe they would change the way they see this world.
This life is not all bullets and sex scandals. It’s more. It is gentle. It’s so sweet it’ll make your chest hurt. So happy it will break your heart. It’s breathtaking.
And it’s a lot damn bigger than a TV.
Matt Timm - November 19, 2017 9:59 am
Time to share something from Sean of the South. This is it.
Charlotte - December 15, 2017 4:51 pm
Amen & SO true; technology is poisoning us…
MaryJane Breaux - November 19, 2017 11:08 am
Another soulful missive, over the fence and outta the park! Adore your perspective, thank you Sean for being a beacon of brilliant light.
Sarah Nealis - November 19, 2017 11:15 am
This page says it was posted Nov. 19 at 7:40 a.m. I am reading it at 6:15 a.m. How is that?
Connie - November 19, 2017 12:43 pm
I never watch news anymore. I have a weather ap on my phone, and that’s all I need. If I watch TV, it’s a cooking show or home improvement show. I’m tired of only seeing bad things. Terrible politicians who thrive on the bad things. Bloodthirsty newscasters. Thank you for finding the good things and reporting them.
Debbie Taylor - November 19, 2017 12:49 pm
Amen! Sean, you are a beautiful light in this world!
Trina V. - November 19, 2017 1:02 pm
I look so forward to opening my email and seeing something from Sean of the South because I know that I AM going to read stories about the good in this world. Thank you for that.
Diane Enloe - November 19, 2017 1:04 pm
Amen, Sean……Amen! ❤️
Ann Anderson - November 19, 2017 1:43 pm
Amen & Amen! A beautiful reminder during Thanksgiving week. May you have a Blessed week as well
Denise Crawford - November 19, 2017 1:59 pm
Exactly why we took television out our home 25 years ago.. Best decision we ever made.
Jean - November 20, 2017 12:29 pm
I did the same. So peaceful without it. I only watch SEC football on someone else’s television.
Marty from Alabama - November 19, 2017 2:08 pm
Those heads in business suits is one reason I watch less TV, except public tv or those channels that have the old shows. Good news is more fun than bad news. Thank you, Sean, for bringing us the good news, even if it started out bad but became good.
Our lives look better when you show us the people that had really bad situations, yet they overcame and now have good lives. Thank you for getting us focused.
Bonnie Peterson - November 19, 2017 2:23 pm
You sir, make my heart smile .
Paula - November 19, 2017 2:39 pm
Precious words…I inserted into my prayer journal as a reminder.
Lyn - November 19, 2017 2:41 pm
You get it right, Sean! Thanks for making me stop and think!
Steve Welch - November 19, 2017 2:48 pm
Amen! Well said my friend.
Patsy Sheppard - November 19, 2017 3:11 pm
There is so much more good in the world than bad. But ignoring the bad does nothing to make it better. The good people, who vastly outnumber the bad ones, have to stand up for the good and call it out by name. Sean does that.
But good people also have to stand up against the bad to defend the good. We all need to do that. Turning off the news or looking away or closing our eyes and ears will not change the bad. It only gives it more power when we do nothing.
Diana K. McAfee - November 19, 2017 3:30 pm
Barbara J Schweck - November 19, 2017 6:16 pm
And AMEN!!! Thank you, Sean
Gordon - November 19, 2017 6:40 pm
Another beautiful reminder to us of the important of “real” life events. Thanks again, Sean.
Anne Godwin - November 19, 2017 8:05 pm
Thanks, again, for showing us your perspective on the good in this world. I used to watch the news at 5, 6, and 10pm on three different networks. When I realized it was mostly bad news, I stopped. If something happens, I usually hear about it. But I don’t have to keep hearing that negative news every day. Thank you for getting to know people and sharing with us.
Jack Darnell - November 19, 2017 8:27 pm
We actually have two new TVs in our motor home. WE turn them on about three hours total a year. I am just tired of the Negative.
Great entry as usual, great talent you have at touching a soul.
Wendy - November 19, 2017 8:29 pm
For good news & inspiring stories, we read Sean.
Susan Hammett Poole - November 19, 2017 9:26 pm
Yes and Amen. Thank you, Sean, for being a hundred times better than those “talking suits” who rarely ever report on the gentle and kind folks and good side of life as you do.
Sue Cronkite - November 19, 2017 9:48 pm
Another god one. Wish I could have seen that MS kid hit the ball!
Jenny Young - November 19, 2017 9:55 pm
Does anyone watch the tv news anymore? Except the people making it?
I know a Tanya in my town…her name is Elizabeth. She has some of THE very best stories. They can rival even yours!
Beverly Pennel - November 19, 2017 9:56 pm
Amen. Good on those who love unconditionally and good on you for telling us about them to keep us focused on the LOVE, WHICH ALWAYS WINS! SO THANKFUL FOR SO MANY BLESSINGS TODAY, THIS WEEK AND EVERY MORNING WHEN I WAKE UP.
HAPPY THANKSGIVING, EVERYONE! SHARE YOUR MEAL WITH SOMEONE WHO REALLY IS HUNGRY.
Carlin Brooks - November 20, 2017 1:49 am
You nailed it. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Peace.
Barry Haggerty - November 20, 2017 5:12 am
I just returned from a week hiking in the Smokies Mountains. Just to let people know that not all our young people are hung up on all the electronics of today. There were dozens of young people who left everything behind to enjoy what God has given us the outdoors of this great nation. I am used to seeing the older generation out there seeing what we have been given but it was so nice all the youth of our nation out seeing what we have given. We will Gods help and the youth of this country continue to be great.
Jean - November 20, 2017 12:32 pm
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
Patricia Schmaltz - November 20, 2017 6:17 pm
Sean, I would rather read your posts than watch any TV. And so I do! Thank you. You bring kindness and heart to my inbox every day. Love hearing your voice. Thank you.
Tara - November 21, 2017 12:48 pm
Beautifully said! Thank you.
Gale Smith - March 19, 2018 12:39 pm
Well Sean, I have 3 tvs, and a desk top computer, but I had the cable disconnected over 3 years ago. All I ever watched was news and Weather Channel. I prefer to read and I get my news from the radio and the Dothan Eagle. I have found I have a lot more free time this way. Time to spend looking for what’s right with the world. Time to experience everyday miracles. I am much more relaxed, and definitely happier than before.