Sunday, August 8, 2010

What Sets You Apart?

At different times in my life I have felt set apart from those around me. Growing up I felt set apart because I was the only one without a mother. At other times I have felt set apart by my decisions and then at other times by a diagnosis. So yes I know how it feels when your "something" makes you feel like you are outside of the normals all around you.

You know what I have noticed lately though? Everyone has a "something". It's true. We often don't see it either because we don't share life on that level or because we are so consumed by our own "something" that we miss those of the ones around us.

So you know what I think really sets you apart? It is not your experience, hard choice, or diagnosis. It is what you choose to do with it!

Tracey Schalk is a perfect example of that. I met Tracey shortly after we adopted Ruthie. She has Arthrogryposis too, but that does not set her apart. Tracey is set apart by the amazing things she does to advocate for other kids with this diagnosis. She has a website,, where she provides all kinds of information and resources on Arthrogryposis. She hosts frequent online chats for those affected by this condition and she spends much of her time advocating for orphans all over the world with Arthrogryposis. She is one amazing young girl and the world is a better place because she walked this road and chose to use her "something" to set her apart.

I am going to close with 2 quotes from Tracey's facebook page:
"Happiness is an attitude. We either make ourselves miserable, or happy and strong. The amount of work is the same." ~Francesca Reigler

"Something good always comes out of something bad" -Julia Donner Andersen

My youngest 2 flying a kite together on the beach

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