Daily archives "04-12-2015"

Aguilera’s back! (apparently) #eyeroll


Which team would you pick?

It’s not a trick question.

At the risk of sounding tyrannical, you’re either one of two types of people. Either, you’re thinking about how to be Love, or you’re not thinking about how to be Love. But, all is not lost! The reality is that sometimes you’re one and sometimes you’re the other. There’s hope!

Whether you’ve got Love on the brains or not, we’re always searching for a voice. Every emotion, every thought, every response; we’re translating into a voice. Our voice. Of, who we think we should be, who we want to be and who we think others want us to be. Why we get ‘stuck’ or ‘confused’ is because we think it’s our voice we’re trying to find – the one that’s individual to us, that makes us different from the next person. And hey, are we all different? Of course. I like peanut butter and jam with my Greek yogurt and someone else likes ‘Keeping Up with the Kardashians’. Different. It’s what makes us beautiful.

But, the voice, the true voice we’re all trying to find (some more than others); it’s not different. We’ve all got that same voice inside of us. The reason you, actually, don’t have to pick which team you want to be on, is because there’s only one (guess it was a trick question). And, the captain chose you long before you even knew the team was there.

Whether you feel like you want to hug someone, hurt someone, laugh, cry, smile, frown; it’s the same voice. It’s all reminder. Everything we experience is a reminder of Love – and which direction we’re moving in.

The choice we can make is the one in which we decide what direction to go with. It’s the choice we make to not only hug a friend hello, but hug that friend goodbye. And, maybe see how many other folks we can hug that day. Or, maybe it’s to just show compassion wherever we can? Conversely, we also can make the choice to build resentment inside and think about how we’ve been hurt and turned against. How Love isn’t there for us. How Love has abandoned us when we needed it most. But, I promise, Love never abandons us. It’s in those circumstances where we abandon it.

Love’s voice is always inside of us. In the moment of that hug, Love is talking to us. It’s telling us we need more of this. It’s telling us we need to give more of this. When things are in the shit, Love is reminding us that it’s there for us. It’s trying to get our attention so that we can lean on it. So, that we can get back in the direction of it.

Think of it this way; when you’re moving in the direction of Love, nothing “bad” can befall you. When you experience that which is perceived as “bad”, is because you’re out of sync with Love. And, if you choose, Love will be there to kick you in the pants to get you back on track.

None of what happens for us in our lives is Love’s fault. It will always be there to celebrate with us and pick up the pieces for us. We get to choose all of it. We get to choose when, how and if we want to….

Be Love.



marriage isn’t everything, Love is

by Jillian Benfield


A year ago, my husband and I went to the most beautiful wedding we will probably ever attend. If there were a show called “My Celebrity Style Wedding,” this wedding would have been on it. It was at a multi-million dollar beachfront home, with multiple bands, dozens of food stations and even synchronized swimmers in the backyard pool. As stunning as it all was, nothing stood out to me more than something the rabbi said during the ceremony. He said, “Marriage is not the most important thing, it is the only important thing.” It stuck with me.

When you have a child with Down syndrome, you get inducted into a club. Other parents reach out to you, they calm you, they strengthen you, they get you. A week after we brought our son home from the NICU, another club member sent my husband and me an e-mail. She found out her son had Down syndrome right after he was born. She wrote about all of the fears she had and how her son is constantly proving most of those fears to be unfounded. She talked about the hope she has for his future.

When we were done reading, my husband looked at me; he was barely able to speak. The tears ran down his face with such force that his throat started to close up, but he was able to choke out a sentence that I will never forget: “I hope he meets a girl with Down syndrome, I want him to love someone the way I love you.”

When we were in the diagnosis phase, I think it was this very topic that haunted me the most. Marriage was so important to me, to us; would he ever get to experience it for himself? Will he ever find someone to love and will that someone love him back? As life expectancy increases for people with Down syndrome, so does the marriage rate. But it appears that when people with Down syndrome get married, it’s a newsworthy event. It’s still not commonplace.

I want him to get married, but I now realize that I want him to get married because marriage has brought me so much joy. Marriage makes me a better person. But just because I have chosen to make it the center of my life, doesn’t mean that it has to be the center of his life. And that would be OK. Our job as parents isn’t to make photocopy versions of our selves. Our job is to instill our good values in our children, but also to teach them to be independent, to make their own decisions, to make their own lives.

So, to the rabbi, I kindly disagree. Marriage isn’t the only thing, love is. Maybe our son won’t love someone the way his Dad and I love each other, but he will love and he will be loved. He will love his sister, his grandparents, his cousins and maybe even a wife. Married or unmarried, our son’s life will be full of love.