Jaycee and Bree are on my Vision Board

The picture of mother/survivor Jaycee Dugard is on my Oprah Vision Board. Why? She has the answer to happiness, she climbed mountainous obstacles. She said to Diana Sawyer in her recent ABC news interview that she nor her mother never gave up hope that they would see each other again.  Dugard was kidnapped in 1991 by Phillip and Nancy Garrido when she was 11 years old and held bound in the backyard of her captors.  She was raped, isolated in solitary confinement until after her second daughter was born, and victimized with verbal abuse for 18 years.

In spite of the abuse, imposed captivity, and rapes Jaycee said to Diane Sawyer that she had to write her new book, A Stolen Life.  “Why not look at it? You know, stare it down until it can’t scare you anymore,” she told Sawyer. “I didn’t want there to be any more secrets…I hadn’t done anything wrong. It wasn’t something I did that caused this to happen. And I feel that by putting it all out there, it’s very freeing,”

“I am happy,” says Dugard…I am happy-these are the words that placed her picture in the center of 2011 Oprah Winfrey Vision Board.

Bree Boyce’s picture was added to my vision board too because of her inspiring “never give up” seek your goal story.  This 22 year old winner of the 2011 South Carolina beauty pageant once weighed 230 pounds, only two years ago. Now she is headed to Vegas! Before Bree heads to Las Vegas in January to compete for the Miss America title, she will travel the country speaking about her weight transformation – as well, of course, as working on the various charitable campaigns for children’s hospitals.

My identification with her for my inspiration came when she told TODAY show host Ann Curry Tuesday, “I just thought to myself, ‘I did it. I did it all on my own.’ Stick out your chest Bree, you deserve every second of praise.

Just like Jaycee or Bree, we can do anything! Whatever it is, you aspire to do – do it!

  • Make up your mind what you want to accomplish
  • Have irrefutable resolve
  • Create a vision board
  • Get busy-put into action you are charged to do
  • Build in rewards at critical intermittent points
  • Celebrate the end! You did it!

Yes you can!

Never, ever give up!

The Heart of Grace

ABC News highlighted a high school basketball team as its “Persons of the Week” last year  for their acts of compassionate grace. View the video http://abcnews.go.com/Video/playerIndex?id=6926639 to capture the fullness of this post.

My immediate feeling after viewing the video referenced above was What is grace?

Grace is humble acceptance. It is honor, dignity, values, strength, compassion, fearless faith.

My next question was How does grace feel?

To most grace feels soothing, non-competitive, empathetic, solid.

For the members of the rival basketball teams, grace felt like caring.

The Milwaukee Madison Knights high school basketball team’s co-captain, Johnntell Franklin, mother had just died from cancer.  He left her bedside and came to the game played against rivals Dekalb Barbs of Illinois.  Because he was not listed as a player the coach could not put him in to play, even though he recognized how important it was for Johntell to assuage his personal pain, without incurring a technical foul.  He sent Johntell in, but the grace evolves deeper when the Dekalb coach told his top free throw shooter to miss the free throw shots in deference to Johntell’s grief.
These young men felt grace, the whole crowd felt grace, and the coaches taught the permanent message of grace to these young men. Dekalb Coach says, “There are a lot of things much more important than the Xs and Os of basketball.” Knights coach wrote “unheard of sportsmanship and class.”

I recently experienced another act of grace after witnessing an unjust act which would have spun others into anger, harsh words or recrimination. Instead this person acted with grace by accepting the outcome without complaint or finger pointing.  That too is grace – to be so aware that circumstances or outcomes do not make the person.

Let us all act with grace.