10 Apr 2013
April 10, 2013

My True National Champ

National Rodeo in town, but all I could think about was the Final Four playing out in front of me as we all watched. Intimidated, maybe a little? But no one told me to wear my ten-gallon hat to watch a basketball game. Guy to my left 250 easily. The guy to my right, 300 pounds if he was 100. Louisville wins!!!!!! Not sure if it was the excited elbow to the rib of the 300 pounder or what, but an hour later I came to know, it was what he owned not the hat he wore that made this man bigger than life.

As usual, but not normal in a restaurant with all TV’s I had my pen and paper just in case a story came to mind. Seeing my journal he asked, “What do you do?” Storyteller I answer. Puzzled he looked, but a smile of peace he gave, I breathed. There is always a story with me I warned him, as I shared my life and how I got to the chair beside him. 

I do not know what was said, I never do when God Shows Up, but as I took a break from mine he began his story with, “Many in my life labeled me as Retarded.” With tears in his eyes this giant of a man wearing a Texan size hat shared his journey. Thirty minutes later he looks me in the eye and says, “Thank You.” Thank you for giving me Hope by not being afraid to tell your story. Would you help me write my story and tell it? Yes I would be honored to. Us retarded people stick together I joked as we both high fived and belly laughed.

It was then I realized it was I who was the true winner of the night, but it was he who was the champ; my champion. It was I who had the privilege to listen to this story of a man who over came. It was he who did not bow down to the Elephants in the Room filled with fear. It was I who was inspired and thankful for such a story. It was he who had all the cattle and no hat.

He was late for the Rodeo, I was well past my time to meet a friend, but neither of us wanted to end our story telling hour. We both new God showed up this day, in a sports restaurant during the final four when we were the final two sitting in the room. We both new we were the true winners of the night. It was our nets of overcoming that we cut down together. Do I know the final score, no? But I do know it is not the hat you wear that makes the person, but the wealth of the story inside that no amount of cattle can buy. It is not what others label us as or tries to have us become.

We all have a story, it is our only and we must share it for all to hear. Who knows, you just may change a life someday, and it could possibly be yours. He definitely elbowed me in the rib. Greg Wins!!!!!!!