Grammy Nominated Artist, Storyteller & Motivational Entertainer

Because of James

I woke up this morning a bit anxious and worried about the event tonight. I have felt incredibly stretched these last few weeks, like I’m running in too many directions and I feel unprepared. I reached out to a friend who tried to calm my fears and then said, ”just do another Facebook post, I’m sure it’ll be great.”  My initial thought was, “What else would I say to promote this event?”

I took James to my happy place, the trails at Percy Warner Park. Half way up the first hill, with Michael Stanley pumping in my ears, and James singing loudly and passionately to Little Einstein’s in Chinese, I found myself exhausted and out of breath. The mean voices told me how out of shape I am at the moment and I should turn around. But we pressed on.

As I rounded the bend, I could see them from afar. I didn’t know them, but immediately I did.  Without hesitation, we stopped. “This is Adam,” a woman wearing a Predators jersey said.  “This is James,” I replied. Simultaneously we both looked down at our children and asked them to acknowledge each other. James and Adam barely lifted their eyes off of their IPad’s and mumbled hello.  As we started to continue walking, the father, also wearing a Preds jersey says, “I guess we both had the same idea.”  I knew that what he meant was that we both put our special needs kids in their adult size strollers to try to take advantage of this beautiful fall day.  But as I huffed and puffed up the rest of the hill, I thought more deeply about his words.

We both had the same idea about a lot of things I’m sure. Thoughts that involved a typical child and walks that didn’t include over-sized strollers and electronics. But we also probably have the same idea about how to uniquely love our kids, and figure out what makes them happy. It’s not always easy, but we figure it out. We figure out how to take advantage of this beautiful day.

As my playlist shuffled from Michael Stanley, to Vince Gill, to polkas, I thought about Adam and his parents.  Everything about their day screamed, “I am not covered by insurance.” The stroller Adam road in, his headphones, his iPad, his orthotics…none of it covered. I shook my head and realized that this was not at all a chance meeting. That it was perfectly orchestrated by God and the universe to remind me (and you) that that’s exactly what Because of James is hoping to do. Starting tonight!

Come paint a pumpkin, or drink some pumpkin spice, or learn how to polka!

5-10pm. The Old School. 5022 Old Hydes Ferry Pike. Ashland City, TN. If you can’t join us, please visit and join the mailing list!