Thursday, February 21, 2013

Latipha Cross - Running for her life
on February 19, 2013 at 5:07 PM, updated February 19, 2013 at 5:21 PM


This past Sunday was Michael Jordan’s 50th birthday, the day before my hubby’s 60th birthday.

We had designated the day to celebrate hubby’s 60th mark not realizing that MJ was the big talk of the town that day.

It was inspiring to watch 50 of Michael’s greatest moments on ESPN and revel in this man’s amazing talent. (I’m still working on coming up with 60 of my husband’s greatest moments....:)

However, the star of the afternoon was neither my hubby or Michael Jordan. It was a young woman named Latipha Cross. A moving piece on ESPN that came on between the MJ segments, Latipha’s story blew us away and truly transformed the way we
celebrated the rest of the day. Even with our personal struggles, we spent the day humbled, being more grateful than ever before for each other, what we had, and our family.

Screen Shot 2013-02-19 at 5.13.47 PM.pngLatipha Cross, runner and human being extraordinaire 
Latipha Cross was a young high school school champion runner who was abandoned by her parents, beaten by her foster parents, homeless and living on playgrounds during her sophomore year, raped by her biological father and a victim of cancer, TWICE, before she even graduated high school.

What amazed both my husband and I was the sense of self, determination, connection and faith in her talent, and a perseverance that most children with two functioning, loving parents, and a comfortable life rarely possess!
Interestingly enough, as a parent who is very active in assisting my kids in navigating through life, Latipha’s story actually made me feel a bit of a burden lifted from my shoulders. Maybe I don’t have to feel SO responsible as a parent in the way that WHO my kids are and HOW they approach life and WHAT they end up doing with their life is so strongly connected to the way that I parent.
Latipha’s story taught me that so many of us come in with our own stuff - characteristics, traits and approaches to life - regardless of our parental situation. And although I can do my darndest to be the best possible parent, my kids have their own driving force that will greatly determine the course and meaning of their life.
I like everyone have had my share of challenges personally and parentally. I’m blessed like many though and have a family, home, friends, food, and so forth. However, Latipha has something that I envy. She has a fire in her belly, a force bigger than her circumstances that rises her above the conditions of her life and gives her PURPOSE. She has a bigger and more powerful parent than either a mother or father. She had her-SELF. NOTHING, NO THING stopped this girl from living her soul’s purpose. She is a teacher of a the highest order for both parents and children alike.
Ali Skylar is a personal growth blogger, (, author (Transforming “Ahh Crap!” into “Wholy Shift!” and Life Sucks...Just Kidding!), songwriter, mom and West Coast Swing dancer whose gutsy and humorous insights inspire personal growth at the speed of life! For more info on Ali, click on her name above to visit her personal profile.


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