A Lesson in Judgement

Last night, I watched America's Got Talent. There were some really neat acts on there, some really weird stuff and one act that taught me a really sobering lesson on not judging people based on appearances or perceived capability.

The second last act in the show was this 17 year old boy who was epileptic. He was a little goofy looking and sounded a little bit slow (mind you that could have been just nerves - my body totally shuts down when I have to get up in front of people - I hate it). The judges talked to him for a few minutes and it was announced that his talent was "indoor kite flying". As I watched this I was thinking oh boy, this is going to be awkward. This kid looks uncoordinated. I'm sure everyone will clap and cheer him on because of his disability, but this is going to be painful. And then the music started.

The song was Angel by Sarah McLaughlin and I don't think he could have made a better music choice. When he got that kite off the ground and started flying it I was in absolute shock. It was graceful, beautiful and touching. It was like watching a talented dancer. The movements of the kite complimented the music perfectly, and for a few minutes, that awkward, uncoordinated boy was transformed into a beautiful, coordinated performer. In those moments, I feel like I got to see a little piece of that boy's soul and it was beautiful.

I'm embarrassed. Who am I to think, Awww, poor kid, he's disabled. After watching that performance, I would say he is way more "abled" than I am. Who am I to pity someone else? I don't like to think of myself as someone who makes snap judgements on appearances, but that boy showed me that how people look or carry themselves, or the diagnoses' that they live with don't define who they are or what they can do. And that is pretty humbling.


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