Friday, May 23, 2014

In his own words: Ashton's thoughts

The world brims with voices clamoring for our attention. And unfortunately, most of the loudest voices come from those in power. The ones who have the margin to write, the platform to speak from, and the computer to pen words with before sending them into the world. We originally put together this video for our mentor training, thinking it would be helpful for our mentors to get a perspective on the schools and neighborhood that formed a context for our kiddos lives. But once I heard Ashton's thoughts, I said: people need to hear this. Ashton shrugged and I asked if I could share his voice with y'all, assuring him of course that you are kind and would treat him with respect and love. I realize the video runs nearly ten minutes, which infringes dangerously on the time and space of a culture and lives that brims supremely busy, but let me reiterate: you need to hear this.

**Ashton is one of my very favorite people in the whole entire world, practically family. So in responding to him, let's follow my mom's favorite rule: if you can't say something nice, say nothing. I always want to leave room for discussion and I post many-many-articles and things that involve voices I don't always agree with. That said, remember Ashton is a human-being. Thanks. 

11 comments:

  1. This is by far the misery words I've ever heard Ashton say, and I loved every minute of it. I'm gonna call you with more thoughts later. Love, love, love.

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  2. I absolutely love Ashton and I it really hurts me to hear the negative things he's experienced and seen in his short life. I am so very glad that our FATHER placed him, and so many others, in yours and Adam's path. It's because of that that he has been able to see a "better way," been able to see "hope," been able to experience what true, unconditional love is, been able to see that not everyone is like so many who he's seen and known. Please, give him a hug from me and tell him I love him. Love you guys too!
    Aunt T

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  3. Love you guys! Thanks for helping Ashton to share his thoughts, and be assured that they will be pondered and treasured.
    Katherine

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  4. I admit, I'm in a rush today and didn't listen to the whole thing....but boy does he have a contagious grin! I found myself smiling at him...what a personality! He's got a great future...despite what he said! I'm coming back to listen later.

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  5. Is Ashton, the artist? I fell in love with your boys when I visited! I'm praying for Ashton and all of your sweet boys today, I just did this with one of my boys on Wednesday I can't wait to share it. I love you friend and I love your heart!

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  6. This was really a thought-provoking discussion. I appreciated hearing Ashton's thoughts expressed so clearly. I've taught in challenging schools, and while some students shared their lives over time as relationships were formed, it's sometimes difficult to have these conversations in the midst of all the standards and discipline and grading that don't always foster openness. It definitely speaks to your love for him and his trust in you that he would do this video and allow it to be shared. God works.

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  7. It was very interesting to hear that he knew that the cycle needed to be broken but wasn't sure if he would be one to stop it. I think with lots of encouragement and good examples that boy does have a future.

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  8. OMW... I officially love Ashton. I have one million thoughts and comments. He is so handsome and funny and intelligent! He was making me miss R so much...and guess who called the second the video ended??? In his words, "It's telekinesis, Mom." :) Let's talk more soon. I need to debrief.

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  9. I love that kid!! He is darling!! He is reaching out for hope...and just needs a really big hug!! We live in a world of to many people "just chill'n"! We need to step up and make a difference! Open our hearts and our minds and hug the people that need it most but seem the least huggable!! I hope Ashton holds on tight and makes a great life for him self and for those around him who need a helping hand!!

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