Another Nature Boy?Written by Ed Williams
Sometimes a person comes along that has potential greatness written all over them. That something special that Muhammed Ali, Elvis Presley, Ric Flair, and a select handful of others possessed. That something that let’s you know that you’re in presence of someone who literally transcends whatever their field of endeavor happens to be. Folks, these type people seldom come along, and if you read their biographies, you’ll find that most knew years before they hit it big that they would. They just had that sort of “air” about them. And folks, I believe I’ve discovered a young man who possesses that same quality. That hint of greatness waiting to be realized. The young man I’m referring to lives in Houston County, and his name is Derek Da Ron Winn.
Derek Da Ron Winn. The name itself has a rock star like quality to it, doesn‘t it? Derek’s a young man who’s just graduated from Houston County High School. A quick look at senior quote in his yearbook says it all:
“175 pounds, pure athlete. SHHHHHHH!! Do you hear it? Greatness!”
Doesn’t that tell y’all something right there? Derek seems to be kind of guy who knows he’s headed for big time, and also knows that he has goods to handle it. And then some.
At this point, some of y’all may be wondering why I’m so sure about Derek’s future? Well, I’ll tell you. One of things greats possess is ability to take an everyday event and turn it into something magical. Derek has that ability. And here’s how I know he does.
Remember I stated earlier that Derek has just graduated from Houston County High School? Well, to graduate from high school you have to participate in graduation ceremony. And folks, Derek just didn’t participate in this year’s graduation, he defined it for everyone in attendance. Defined it in front of a packed house. Defined it in a way that’ll be remembered for many years to come. And here’s what he did...
Any graduation starts with speeches, principle, valedictorian and salutorian all give them. Some schools even involve more people than that. After they‘re done kids all line up to walk across stage and receive their diplomas. And it was at this precise point in graduation exercise that Derek Da Ron Winn crossed from mortality over into realm of legend...
PerceptionWritten by C. V. Harris
A friend of mine said to me one evening, “this is what I admire about you, whenever you say you’re gonna to do something, you do it”! People always ask me how do I stay motivated? How do I stay encouraged? Whenever I am asked this question my answer is always same. I tell them that I stay focused and motivated by remaining in an autopilot mode. However, when I ponder that question on a deeper spiritual level, I come to realization that true answer is much more involved than “auto-pilot” response. Would you like to know what real answer is? Keep reading.
For those of you that follow my writing, you may have read a story that I wrote entitled Zenobia’s Life Lessons A True Testament of Love. This story can be read at www.yourfuneralkeepsakes.com in Inspirational Story section.
In that story, I briefly tapped on fact that I briefly lived in a shelter at one point. The reason that I ended up in a shelter in first place was because my job downsized and relocated to Atlanta. My employer offered me chance to keep my job by moving with company, but unfortunately, they only offered financial relocation assistance to higher ups. So there I was. Two young children to support and future for employment looked grim.
I applied for unemployment and ultimately had to apply and did receive Welfare. During this time, I began to prepare my children to live in a place that in my opinion at time, was worst case scenario in WORLD. My children were about 7 and 8 years-old. I knew how impressionable young children were at that age, so it was acute to their emotional development manner in which I told them news.
My children and I used to have what we called “family rap sessions”. These sessions took place once per week, usually after dinner while sitting in a circle on our living-room floor, or during dinner seated at kitchen table. My children grew to love and look forward to these sessions because it gave them opportunity to vent to me anything, in any manner (remembering that I was still parent), and I could and would not reprimand them for what we discussed afterwards. We simply would discuss and I would offer suggestions and solutions for them to handle any of small problems that a child would encounter at their young age. I learned years later that this was enzyme for open relationship that I maintain with them to this day.
This is when I broke news. I paid careful attention when describing shelter because it was significant that they quickly developed a positive outlook on where their new home would be. I centered their attention on a few of key things that they could do while living there that I disallowed or did not provide to them while living in our home. I told them what happened with job and that we had to move. After they each asked where we would be moving to, I described this wonderful place, where kids could all play together after school (my children were “latch-key kids”, and weren’t allowed to go outside after school having to come home and do homework). I described a place where they would get unlimited food and snacks, (I never bought sugary; drinks and limited amount of snacks that I kept in house). I told them how we each would have our own beds (they used to share a bed), and they would get opportunity to meet and play with other boys and girls. At shelter, bedtime was moved back an hour later to 10:00. If you have ever been 7 or 8 years-old, when a parent tells you that your bed and playtimes were going to be extended, that is more than enough reason to look forward to going to this place wouldn’t you think? The “Place”. That is code-name that what we agreed to use when speaking about shelter (I trained my children to be really good at keeping a secret, and they were. I am sure that this was due to fact when I was young, I was such a BLABBER mouth. As a result of which, I had grown to have a dislike for people who could not keep their mouth closed.). That was our code word used when we were discussing shelter amongst people that we knew. I did not want anyone to know that we were living there, and no one did. I was extremely ashamed for being in that situation and I was still trying to come to grips with hitting rock bottom and having to go there in first place, even though my children adjusted impressively well.