Goodbyes Suck

“Goodbyes Suck” – Aaron Trofholz

Aaron highly anticipates any time our family gets together and the holidays are no exception. He looks forward to these events with such passion. The monthly countdown quickly turns into weeks, days, and the final minutes until each family member pulls into the driveway.

Then something happens, he realizes we will inevitably be leaving to return to our homes. He becomes quiet and slightly withdrawn. When you ask to sit with him, his eyes well up with tears and he says very matter of factly, “Goodbyes Suck”.

He has this unique ability to be present for the good times and present for the hard times. He acknowledges the stuff he finds challenging and he owns it.

As Christmas Day started to pass, he became quieter and quieter. He remained fixated on what time we were leaving, why we were leaving, and when he will see us next.

A delicious Christmas dinner came to a close and Aaron excused himself immediately. He needed to report to his duty of monitoring the door for our departure. As I loaded my arms with bags my eyes welled up in sync with his welled up eyes. It hit me like a ton of bricks… rather than hide my tears in embarrassment, I would allow my vulnerability to be seen. That I too can be present for the good times and be present for the hard times, much like Aaron. Had I not witnessed his ability to show up in his truth, I may not have been able to do the same.

Yes Aaron, goodbyes suck. In the suck, you have shown me how to be grateful for a love that few words can articulate. The love of family. You have shown me that sometimes the most loving thing we can do is to show our wholehearted vulnerability. Love shows up for us in various forms, even the hard moments can be rooted in deep love.

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Giving Thanks

This week’s story comes from Matt, Aaron’s first sibling. Thank you Matt for an inspiring story and sharing such a huge piece of Aaron’s life.

Thanksgiving is a special time of year for all of us. Being thankful for things like family, friends, health, and companionship. Having way too much turkey and pumpkin pie. Trampling each other to death at Wal-Mart to get the last fidget spinner. While we can expect all of these every year, the Thanksgiving holiday encompasses something a little larger and a little deeper for both myself and my family. 

Aaron is oftentimes the glue that holds our family together. Regardless of what is going on in our lives, or whatever hardships and challenging experiences we might be going through, the one constant every holiday in our house is that Aaron will be there to make us laugh, smile, and help us realize how lucky we are as a family to have one another and have each other’s support. And for that, I am very thankful. However, there is also something else that I am incredibly thankful for that is worth mentioning during this time of year.

I believe Aaron is a product of his environment. The reason he is such a positive part of all of our lives, is because he has so many positive people in his life. It is difficult to put into words how lucky he is to have such a loving and compassionate family. It starts with my parents who have sacrificed and have given so much to ensure that Aaron’s quality of life is as good as it can possibly get. It extends to my sisters who can, and do, seamlessly step in at a moment’s notice and provide the same level of love and comfort. It extends to family friends who also provide the highest level of warmth and endearment that anyone could ask. The number of family friends we have who go out of their way to make Aaron feel important by taking him to lunch, FaceTiming with him, and calling him on his birthday is almost inconceivable. I recently told somebody that we could not ask for a better group of people for Aaron to be surrounded by, and I really do believe that and for that, we are all tremendously grateful. 

To all those people who have selflessly given part of their life to help, mentor, and spend time with Aaron–I can’t say thank you enough. You know who you are. 

Seeing the similarities over the differences is the heart’s greatest ability.

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Through connection we can overcome the label of disability and unleash our true abilities. 

What Counts

This week’s story is brought to you by Aaron’s Aunt Red, also known as “Red”.

Please enjoy the story:

Sometimes I think the more the heart in my chest fights and pushes against my weaknesses or blah days, the closer I am to my spiritual “what counts”  self.  I said SOMETIMES.

But glimmers of “what counts” come from my nephew Aaron at ALL TIMES. I said ALL TIMES.I know this because I am an expert! An expert at being Aunt Red hanging out with Nephew Aaron! Aaron is a glimmer, a shine, a twinkle, a light. However you put it, he is  “what counts.”

Recently, he reminded me of this:

One night, while loading 2 days worth of dirty dishes into my worn out dishwasher that makes noise on the sanitize cycle, I thought about people who I lost touch with, and tried to reconnect with …and no reply for one reason or another. Life happens but I am very popular with myself —shouldn’t everyone answer?

I felt sorry for myself. It’s genetic. I’m Irish. I was taking in my 5-minute lament. I should have jumped into that noisy dishwasher for a mental wash— and sanitize on the ‘Quit feeling sorry for yourself’ cycle.

The next day at work, a call came in on my cell that I wanted to take but couldn’t. I listened to the message from Aaron ona break: “Siiiissssay! (Pause) Siiiiiisssay! IT’S AARON! Hi. Cheese fart. How’s your day? It’s cold here. (Pause). I love you. Bye.” The sting of disconnect was gone. And we have a joke as old as the ages (me) about cheese farts.

Aaron’s message was a glimmer of “what counts” from his voice of strength, love and determination. We caught up on FaceTime soon after. My nephew Aaron’s family tells me he checks in with everyone. I’m happy to be on his list! But the timing of when he checked in with me that day was too coincidental not to believe it went from my sappy selfie lament to his happy ears. Aaron’s mother, my sister (sssiiiissaay), says, “I don’t believe in winki dinks” – it’s more than a coincidence. Aaron’s message was more than a coincidence. It was meant to be.

I believe in  “what counts.” Aaron is ALWAYS  “what counts” in this world.  Wherever you’re at, he’ll find you and pull you up or out! Aaron knows how to connect and keep all connected. What a gift! His personality, instincts, love and humor are a joy to be around!

Aaron is a seer of “what counts!”

You’ll see this when you’re around him!

By: Aunt Red

Seeing the similarities over the differences is the heart’s greatest ability.

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The Courage to be Aaron

HAPPY BIRTHDAY AARON!!!

In just 34 years you have easily changed the lives of each person who has had the privilege of crossing your path. 

Your birthday has always been an emotional day for our family, the most beautiful kind of emotional. Maybe it’s your infectious self love that insists on recognizing the entire month of October as your birthday… or maybe it’s more than that, maybe it’s deeper. 

I have realized something new this year. October 17th almost seems to be a day of reflection, much like New Year’s Day. I find myself pondering, how can I be more like Aaron? I want what that guy has. I want to have the lenses in which you view the world. For 27 years now, I, much like anyone who knows you have been completely in awe of your entire being. However, for the first time it has struck me, we can all be like you. It just requires a little courage. 

The courage to be Aaron, to live a life that is unapologetically true to you. You show up for life whole heartedly and life shows back up for you in return. You have never hidden from your truth, you have always been Aaron. That extra chromosome of yours has sky rocketed you into a way of living that this world needs. I believe with every fiber of my being that at the core of that chromosome is not only infinite love, but the most wild courage known to mankind. 

The dictionary defines courage as, “mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty”. We live in a world that finds comfort in labeling people. Since October 17th 1984, you have shattered expectations, judgement, and misconceptions by being YOU. In my humble opinion, Merriam Webster has it all wrong. The definition provided for courage is inadequate to say the least, it misses the core of what courage is truly all about. You have taught me that courage is the strength we find in the ability to suit up and show up. It is the willingness based on faith to see the light at the end of the tunnel. It is the stillness we feel when we are no longer questioning if we are enough – we are enough. You have shown me that courage is not just an action, it is a way of being. 

Happy Happy Birthday Aaron! May your 34th year on this earth be nothing short of pure joy.

I love you.

We celebrate you today and everyday. 

Seeing the similarities over the differences is the heart’s greatest ability.

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From us, to you.

TODAY IS AARON’S BIRTHDAY!

Rather than attempt to narrow down a single ability he has taught the world over his lifetime, I have asked the people who know him best to contribute to a special birthday post.

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If a picture is worth a thousand words, how do you measure the emotions behind this picture?

The picture above has always been one of our family’s favorites. Is it humanly possible to look at this picture and not smile? Almost impossible not to catch the infectious joy this picture radiates… I mean seriously look at that precious little smile alongside those eyes full of hope.

Today, Aaron turns 33. This picture always seems to surface every year on October 17. It was taken on his first birthday, October 17, 1985. This year I asked my parents to reflect on what they learned during Aaron’s first year of life and my siblings what they learned over their lifetime. I gave them all about a week to ponder this broad and tough question before I bombarded them over fajitas with, “so…. what’d ya learn?” The response was unanimous.

My mom and dad stated so matter of fact, “celebrate things as they happen and don’t create expectations that are unrealistic.”

How is this related to the above picture? Spoiler, my mom and dad had to place a brick behind Aaron in order for him to sit upright in the picture. Unlike his peers, he was not able to do so on his own. However, they were not going to miss the opportunity to provide the little guy with the opportunity to celebrate all that makes him Aaron. They learned in that first year that life would not always provide Aaron with a brick to prop him up and that is A-OKAY! It was time to begin celebrating all that makes him unique, all that makes him sparkle, and all that makes him able to change the lives of every soul he encounters.

My dad stressed the importance of celebrating all of the victories, big and small “…every milestone was special regardless of what and when it was.” Removing the unrealistic expectations allowed them not to miss the opportunity to witness the beauty that is his life.

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Now let’s bring on the siblings…

First up, the first of us to meet Aaron… Matt!

“… I always remember coming home from college and Aaron being at the airport always so excited to see me and have ‘the whole 6 of us’ together and that it has really made me appreciate how much we love our family and close friends…how we all accept each other and are happy to be in each other’s company…specifically, the first Labor Day I ever came home from college. He was so excited and I was so excited to see him. But then it became every time I came home”

…Amen Mattie, Amen.

Next up, the baby of the family, Mary Kate. The 14 lessons she has learned from Aaron are worth taking note of, that is a promise.

  • always laughs no matter what the situation is
  • ask mindless questions when you feel like in you’re in an uncomfortable situation
  • always do what you want to do
  • the little things in life are what matter… such as going for a car ride around the block listening to Home Alone and getting a coke
  • screaming at the top of our lungs to Free Fallin by Tom Petty can instantly put you in a good mood
  • making funny and weird gestures to each other in public
  • not caring what anyone thinks of you
  • living every moment to the fullest
  • having the worst day ever and a target trip turns the day around
  • shaking your butt in public is always acceptable
  • always answer a FaceTime call from him because you’re guaranteed to smile
  • never make a promise you can’t keep/be held accountable
  • never turn down a late night cruise
  • always say yes to a sleepover even if that means sharing a bed with Aaron and 2 dogs

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Next, my mom’s take on Aaron’s emotional response to “Happy Birthday.”

Happy Birthday to You!
Happy Birthday to You!
Happy Birthday Dearest Aaron!
Happy Birthday to You!

Aaron is so moved by the song “happy birthday.” His eyes well up with tears and he grabs his heart ever so intently. Mom believes this is due the humility Aaron practices in his day to day life. She said, “…the man does not lack self-esteem, that is for sure, but he does not necessarily see how extremely special or his direct impact on the world around him.” She believes that on October 17, specifically in that moment when we all sing to him, he feels it and he feels it deeply.

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Lastly, let’s wrap this up with an open letter from me to dude.

Dear Aaron,

Although I have only known you for 26 years of your life, it feels like I have known you an eternity. God had BIG plans when he placed you on this earth 33 years ago. You light up every room you walk in, not in the cliche way. In the way that truly no words can describe. Being your little sister is my greatest privilege. I cannot begin to comprehend a life that did not include you. Your kindness is something few words can describe, it is limitless and it is available to all. You have taught me that it is our differences that make us unique. It is by truly embracing everyone and everything that we live and grow. Your kindness is something few words can describe, it is limitless and it is available to all. It blows my mind that you believe whole heartedly your entire family has Down Syndrome. You choose not to see the label of Down Syndrome that was placed upon you 33 years ago as a disability. You embrace all of the infinite abilities jam-packed into that extra chromosome. It is ever so clear that you see it as a uniting factor that has the ability to change this world… and I am with you buddy! Our family would never have been the same without you. This world would never have been the same without you. You are a gift beyond measure. Through you I see Love has no expiration tag, no judgement, you have taught me that love is the purest form of joy. I thank you, from the most sincere part of my heart for continually challenging my limiting beliefs, because of you my world is much greater. Because of you my heart knows love unlike any other.

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Love, Andie

If you made it to this point… thank you! Thank you for joining us on this journey of reflection on why our lives are infinitely better because of October 17, 1984.

Aaron, We Love You.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY AARON!!!

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It’s Ok Not To Be Ok!

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“People with Down Syndrome are Always Happy”.

Wouldn’t that be wild if that were the case? Individuals with Down Syndrome are not always happy. (insert gasp) really?? Try to take a guess as to why this is not true, go ahead I dare ya. This week’s ability is the ability to not be okay.

Why aren’t people with Down Syndrome always happy? Because… they are HUMAN! That’s right, you heard me. They are human beings, just like you. Don’t get me wrong, Aaron is fairly happy 99.9% of the time, however there are moments where his humanness rears its gorgeous head. I think this is a pressure so many of us face, or at least I do. This pressure to always be “great!” can be quite exhausting. I don’t necessarily believe this is a pressure from the outside world, rather it is a pressure that comes from within. If we are honest, how will people react? Will they still be our friends? Will they still pick up our calls? Vulnerability is one of the scariest mountains to climb however the reward is something few words can describe. Through vulnerability comes connection. When we can share that what is most “shameful” or “embarrassing” we provide others the opportunity to recognize they are not tackling this life alone.

The reality is, everything is not “okay” all of the time 24 hours 7 days a week. If everything was okay all of the time, we would be robots… and even robots malfunction. There is a beauty few words can describe when Aaron faces a mountain that seems to steep and overcomes through willingness to be vulnerable about the climb.

Recently, Aaron was experiencing severe pain. A pain that was challenging for him to find the words to articulate the discomfort. He voiced frustration, disappointment and straight up anger… and it was absolutely breath taking. Please don’t get me wrong, I would never in a million years wish to see him in pain. However, seeing his ability to scream it out and express the most raw of feelings was extraordinary. It reminded me that sometimes life throws us hard balls (insert a lets make lemonade out of lemons quote) but really, life can be tough but that does not mean we have to be the world’s toughest warrior. Strength comes when we can admit feelings of defeat and open our hearts to the possibility of help through vulnerability and connection.

Sure, most of the time you see someone with Down Syndrome they may be happy. However, I believe this is due to the deeply embedded ability to make everyone’s life better by simply being in it… that will have to be another post. Until then, get out there and see the similarities over the disabilities.

Seeing the similarities over the differences is the heart’s greatest ability.

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Don’t Should All Over Yourself

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I have never once heard Aaron say, “oh man, I should have done XYZ” OR “I could have done XYZ better”.

The man has the most beautiful confidence, not the egotistical type of confidence. The confidence that stems from faith in his abilities and his choices. I have never witnessed the man live in fear or doubt.

This is one of his abilities that I struggle to understand. I am sure I am not alone on this one… We hear all too often in the workplace, the home, and schools “I should have studied more, I should have talked about that in my interview, or I should be a better person”. My question is, who in the world was the one to set the bar for these “shoulds”??? I go back and forth on this one. Is this a societal issue? The weight of the world? OR are these “shoulds” an internal pressure we place upon ourselves to obtain expectations we wouldn’t even put on our worst enemy.

If we eliminate the words shoulda, woulda, coulda from our vocabulary what would we be left with?

Drumroll please…

We would be left with DO!!!

That’s right, DO! Maybe Nike was on to something with “Just Do It”.

Every single day, Aaron lives in the DO. I am not sure I buy that this is a conscious decision he makes every morning upon awakening, I think the ability to DO is intertwined into every fiber of his being.

Now, sometimes this can be frustrating to the outside world (myself included) when Aaron just wants to DO DO DO. For example, “lets go get a coke at McDonald’s” or “lets go to party city”. Those are the types of “DO” that can ultimately be frustrating…especially after you just went to the gas station to bring him a coke or you went to party city yesterday (and the day before) and no they still do not sell the green clacker he is tirelessly searching for.

The DO I find infectious is his natural born talent to DO kind things, DO loving things, and DO the next right thing. This is what I like to call his internal DO. Contrary to the external DOs these do not include running around searching for tangible items that have not been made since 1999. These are the DOs that can change the world.

There is not a should, could, or would in Aaron’s vocabulary. He simply does. He gives life his all with zero expectations and zero regrets. He trusts that what he does is enough, because for him it is.

This is possible because he denies the pressure of outside expectations. He declines the internal dialogue so many of us are plagued with that becomes all too consuming with self-doubt. He trusts that all mighty gut of his and simply does the next right thing.

When we eliminate “should” from our internal dialogue we have the ability to view ourselves and in turn others through the lenses of love.

Now please, don’t should all over yourself this weekend. Get out there and DO.

Seeing the similarities over the differences is the heart’s greatest ability.

If you or someone you know would like to share their experiences about seeing the similarities over the differences please contact theheartability@gmail.com 🙂

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The Unconditional Heart

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Aaron’s impact on this world seizes to amaze me. Upon reading what I am about to share with you all, I was immediately covered in goosebumps and moved to tears . Joy “Lynette” Gibson is one of my mother’s dear friends who without a doubt has struck up a special bond with Aaron. They immediately clicked… it has been an absolute privilege to see and hear the way he has impacted her life.

Without further delay, please enjoy “The Unconditional Heart” written by Joy “Lynette” Gibson. 

When I first met Aaron 14 years ago, he offered me a beer at 2:00 in the afternoon. No one was home, I had stopped by unannounced … and he cordially invited me in. I did not hesitate and felt very welcomed, I did not take the beer, however I enjoyed my initial visit with this extraordinary young man. Not only did I not feel different but on the contrary, felt as if someone who did not know me (yet) let me come into a world so pure, natural, and similar … that I would only gain the ability to grow & learn from this new found friendship. And so, our story starts ……

I have been told by many that I am the “dog whisperer”.  No, Aaron is. Because, similar hearts find each other.   Certainly understand each other.   I have witnessed on many occasions this uncanny relationship between Aaron and dogs. As if they “get” him, he “gets” them. They both sense this similarity. No, I am not comparing Aaron to a dog. By any means. He is smarter. And certainly more clever and funnier! The idea that this unconditional yearning for acceptance and love just comes naturally. As it “should”.   however ….

I see more than often, people do not like to feel different. It makes them uncomfortable. So, trying to connect with the special needs person just makes them “ stand out”. At least in their minds. They don’t like it.  I however, see the need to connect with this “difference” because by finding the similarities, I will benefit from this humble relationship – and I’ve been fortunate to have had this for many years in knowing Aaron.  He has taught me to accept us as being similar. He doesn’t feel that we are different.   I have never treated him “special” – if anything he treats me special. He makes me feel needed and wanted. He does this, without any preparation, or pre-anticipated actions. He just does,  “it”!

I have conversations with Aaron that are so real and to the point.  One thing that Aaron says and does.. Automatically, is question “right back at me” … what I just asked him. And then, he comes up with, “so when are you coming to visit” or “how is Ben and Quinn” or “don’t come and visit” and “the hell with Ben and Quinn” God love him.  In that small window …. I smile (usually a lot) and my heart is filled with this momentary gratefulness of knowing this unconditional heart and soul that I know, deep deep in my heart, that he loves me, and cares about me. For real!  Aaron probably doesn’t really know why he loves me. But, one thing he does know, is that he does. Because he feels it. And he really doesn’t care how and why.  Wouldn’t our world be a better place if we all could take this ability to love and care unconditionally – value it and use it in our daily lives.  And not “dissect” every little word and emotion. – Well, in reality, this will never happen.

We know that “this” ability may not always work for everyone, but, if we could all try and find an Aaron in our life, whether it’s a person, a dream, a talent, a pet….  we can all grow and benefit from being open to this similarity (at least the curiosity) that man kind needs and would benefit from.

Aaron has personally brought me “joy” of acceptance. I couldn’t be more grateful to know him and to continue to grow with him. We are the same. And I am proud to say that.

– joy “lynette” gibson

Thank You, Joy “Lynette” Gibson for sharing your heart’s ability to see the similarities over the differences. 

Seeing the similarities over the differences is the heart’s greatest ability. 

“To be brave is to love someone unconditionally, without expecting anything in return.” – Madonna

If you have a story you wish to share about YOUR experience with seeing the similarities over the differences please contact: theheartability@gmail.com

 

 

“Nothing can dim the light that shines from within”

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Have you ever met someone that is literally glowing? Someone who looks like they bathe in all that is sparkles and glitter? For me, this person is Aaron. The man is literally a ray of sunshine, always beaming light to anyone who has the privilege of being graced by his presence. He 100% lights up any room he walks into and you cannot help but light up through his infectious joy.

Sure… sometimes it rains in the world of Aaron, but the sun still shines. You know exactly what I’m talking about, that perfect summer down pour on a perfectly sunny day. It never seems to make sense yet you can’t take your eyes off the phenomena. Aaron is that phenomena, he continues to shine in the darkest of storms.

I have always been super curious as to how this is humanely possible. How can one not be affected by the troubles of the world? How does one shield off other’s negativity? I decided to take some time to reflect on how Aaron shines from within, I found that there are a few things that he does consistently in order to maintain the strength of his light.

Here are a few of the things that I found Aaron does on a daily basis:

1.) Appreciate any and everything that brings you joy. No, Aaron is not sitting down nightly writing out a gratitude list or even taking the time to consciously reflect on it before he retires at night. (If you have the discipline for that practice, more power to ya!) He is living in the appreciation for all that brings him joy in every single moment. This is something attainable to us all, living each and every moment with the appreciation of all that is going well for us. Focusing on what we have rather than what we do not have.

2.) Connection – All day, every day, Aaron is constantly looking to connect with family and friends. He texts/calls/facetimes every member of our immediate family at least once a day (sometimes every hour on the hour).

3.) “Aaron Time”, while he loves to connect with everyone he adores, he also does not underestimate the value in some solid “me time”. He can listen to his gut when it is telling him to step away and take a moment to himself. Daily, he takes the time to recharge his battery by doing something he enjoys in solidarity.

4.) Follows a healthy routine: of course, with a little spontaneity here and there. He does the same thing day in and day out. This removes any opportunity for the unknown, which is super scary for all of us!

5.) Lastly and debatably most importantly, Aaron’s joy for life is driven internally. While the external pleasures of the world are always a much welcomed bonus, he lights up the brightest when he feels joy, peace, connection, love, and much much more.

While I do not know nor will I ever know what it is truly like to be in the mind of Aaron, I can take solace in the fact that through being in his presence I am exposed to something miraculous. I am exposed to the power of gratitude, connection, self-care, routine, and internal happiness. I will never know which one of these is the “magic key” to shining from within. However, I can find comfort in knowing that if I just try my very best to practice all five of these things I have a shot at glowing like the dude.

Sounds simple enough right?

Seeing the similarities over the differences is the heart’s greatest ability.

The Haircut

HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY!

 

The story that I will be sharing with you this week comes from a man named Jack. Jack is a dear family friend who reached out to my father a few weeks ago with a story he felt moved enough to share. Needless to say, I was thrilled, this is exactly what I envisioned when starting The Heart Ability. A platform for any and everyone to share their experiences with Aaronand any human being with extraordinary abilities. I reached out to Jack immediately after I gained the knowledge that he had something he wanted to share. I was met with kindness and compassion from someone who’s life was touched by Aaron. The story brought tears and chills because it reinforced the simple fact that Aaron has SO much to share with this world. Rather than try to put this story into my own words, I have chosen to leave Jack’s email exactly how it arrived in my inbox.

 

Now… let me get out of the way, I present to you, Jack’s Story

 

(The following came directly from Jack)
I have many memories of Aaron, and I always smile when I think of him.

 

One memory has stayed with me … even though it has been more than 10 years ago.
It was late on a Friday afternoon. Your Dad and I were at the office, where we had working together to solve a complicated issue.

 

As we were about to leave, he said that he and Aaron were going to do one of Aaron’s favorite things … get a haircut together.

 

He asked if I’d like to join them. I said, “Yes – that would be fun”.

 

When we arrived, it was a salon, rather than a traditional men’s barber shop.   As the three of us entered, a woman in her mid-twenties greeted Aaron.  He gave her a 1000 watt smile and they were both clearly happy he was there.  He was eager to get started with his haircut, and they had a laughing conversation as she cut his hair.

 

Soon, it was Dad’s turn for a haircut. Aaron came to sit next to me, and was eager to strike up a conversation wth me.

 

I was struck by thedeep spark inside of Aaron to be sociable, and positive, and I loved thegenuineness of his behavior.  Aaron was enthusiastic, living in a moment of happiness, and inviting me to do the same.

 

After a long week of working on knotty problems, I felt like I was being welcomed to the ‘happy, easy, fun place’.  It felt like Aaron’s gift to me.

 

When it was my turn for a haircut, Aaron was excited for me, and told me, “I hope that you like it as much as I do!”  I laughed … I had never seen someone enjoy a haircut as much as Aaron did.  It was contagious.  Living in the moment and savoring it.

 

So, this memory of Aaron reminds me of the joy of finding pleasure in the simple things in life, and living in the moment.

 

Even more, I appreciated the depth of his his desire to connect with others, and how naturally he did so.  I commented to your Dad afterwards that I can see that Aaron is surrounded by a family with a positive, generous spirit – people who love him as he is, and savor sharing a life with him.

 

It was fun to be invited into that experience, too!

 

-Jack L. 2017

 

WOW!!! Anyone else completely moved by Jack’s story? I know I was and still am.

 

This story reminds me of what I love most about Aaron, his ability to find absolute joy in the simple things. It is all too easy to get wrapped up in the materialistic things or the troubles of the world. May this be a friendly reminder to pause, take a deep breath, and enjoy the little things in your life. The little things are what ultimately add up to be the big things. The “big things” being the feelings we experience when we are simply living. Recognizing and appreciating the simple things is the recipe for a life worth living. I encourage anyone reading this to find joy in the simple things over the next few days. Maybe take a moment to make a gratitude list, nothing fancy, simply take a mental inventory of all that is good in your life. Share this joy with somebody near or far, just share it. Share the joy for living. It is easy to get wrapped up in the cycle of “when I have this I will be happy or when this happens I will be happy”, what if you knew that everything that could bring you happiness was within reach? Connect with others about life’s simple pleasures. When we choose to share this joy for life with others, we give them permission to do the same. The ripple effect is fantastic. Thank you Jack, from the most sincere part of my heart for your willingness to share your experience.

 

I am looking for anyone who has been directly impacted by the infinite wisdom of an individual with extraordinary abilities. If you have a story you feel called to share please email me at theheartability@gmail.com

 

Seeing the similarities over the differences is the heart’s greatest ability. 
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