When My Sister Lindsay write a letter for the segment of the Everyone Has A Story about a inspiration person that she knows she wrote a Story about her Older Sister Leah. And I got really Super happy when we find out that Lindsay’s letter won for a Contest of the Everyone Has A Story and we got to fly the whole family to New York City and to be on the Today Show on the Kathie Lee Gifford And Hoda Kotb Segment.
The year was 2011. My hair was freshly highlighted and my oh so “Kathie Lee and Hoda” dress was dry-cleaned – ready for my few moments of fame. It’s hard to believe almost 6 years have passed since my family was featured on The Today Show. I was fairly certain I would be famous by now. At the time, I was absolutely certain that a producer would discover me as I walked the hallways of the NBC Studios in Rockefeller Center. Fast forward 6 years – definitely not famous – but still finding so much joy in sharing stories on life with Leah.
When I reflect on the experience, a rush of gratitude overcomes my emotions. How cool to be able to share that memory alongside my family. What a fulfilling opportunity for Leah. Moments like that keep us dreaming big and open to whatever life will throw our way.
I got really really happy happy to be in New York City and to honor to be there and to be on the show with Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb and to sit across to them. It got me to have that great moment and wonderful fun time to have it there in my whole life and my rest of my life too. I will cherish that and keep it wherever I go and to have that in my life.
Piano is the main tool Leah uses to inspire. When I get to experience music she makes as she conquers the piano, a skill that is difficult for all types of people, I am in one of my favorite places in the world. I reflect on the overwhelming feeling of sitting on the Today Show couch, holding hands with Kathie Lee Gifford (whaaaattt?), crying on National TV as I watched Leah play the piano. I must say, few moments have rivaled that one in my lifetime.
When the show was starting to get ready for the performance when they honored me on the Today Show at first I was a little nervous because it was my first time to be on national television. We did a rehearsal on their piano before the show started and that did really help me because all pianos play different feeling and sounding and it sometimes is hard to play a duet with a new person other than My Mom. I play the song that Kathie Lee and David Friedman write a song about me called Anything is Possible. And the Broadway Star Karen Mason sing the song. All of us and also with me on the piano to play with them and perform with them that is a very special moment that all of us that we have together and to perform. I love the song it is the most beautiful song that I hear before.
After my Sister Lindsay read her letter on the Everyone Has A Story segment and I listened to the beautiful heartfelt and touching words and it touched me and my heart that got me a little bit of tears.
I hope that the people watching the segment feel hope and encouragement. And families with a child who has Down Syndrome to have courage. And people can see that a child with Down Syndrome has feelings like everybodys feelings too.
Reading Leah’s words, our purpose for Upside Down parallels so much about our experience on the Today Show. Hope. Families with a child who has Down Syndrome to have courage. Advocating for all types of people, and the truth that we all have feelings that deserve respect. Acceptance. And most importantly, living our lives with a positive perspective, rooted in love. Six years have passed since NYC and six years will come and go, and one thing I know for sure is we will still be telling stories to whoever will open their minds and hearts to our words.
Here’s to turning our minds Upside Down.