"Think about the honor of the opportunity," B.A. Sheppard says in his viral video, which is the perfect way to think about things during this pandemic. His son is mowing the lawn and he seized the moment to remind us all of the importance of individuality and doing things not necessarily the "right way," but the way that feels right for you.

"This young man coming toward me in this lawn mower, thats my son," Sheppard says, smiling into the camera. "He's cutting the grass and zig zagging all over the place. And you know what? Its perfectly fine. While I might have cut in a certain pattern, he's doing his thing in the way that he wants to do it. And it's totally okay. He is getting the grass cut. It may not be dad's way, but he's getting it done. And therein is the honor of the opportunity."



Sheppard continues by saying that being able to give his son space where he can figure out how he wants to get things done is a great privilege. "As a young man, I don't need him doing things exactly the way I did it," he says. "Right now, it seems like he's just cutting grass. But in my mind, because I know my son wants to be an engineer, I see his mind at work and I know that what he is producing now… it's going to help him in the future."

I walk to the beat of a different drummer, so Sheppard's words are very personal to me. When I was fifteen, I started playing guitar and writing music. I knew I wanted to be a musician and there was no way anyone was going to talk me out of it. Learning that your son wants to make music for a living isn't exactly what every parent wants to hear. But my parents always supported me. Always. The path I chose was not an easy one, but I knew it. I cannot imagine what it would have been like if my parents shamed me into working in an office or becoming a lawyer or doctor because that is what they wanted for me. I would have constantly been looking out the metaphorical window wondering what could have been. That is no way to live life.

My mother Ellie, 79, and my father Peter, who will be turning 81 years old this month, had the wisdom, patience and the compassion to stand behind me every step of the way. It's the same way that this father sees his son. Sheppard concludes by giving us all a beautiful task. He challenges us to look for the honor in the opportunity of relationships that you have. I'm grateful to my parents for always supporting me and allowing me to march to that beat the way I wanted to. It allowed me to be the man I am today. For all the children out there, this video is an inspiration and reminder to find your path and not to live in the shadows of what others think you should do or be. Always, be yourself.

via Jody Danielle Fisher / Facebook

Breast milk is an incredibly magical food. The wonderful thing is that it's produced by a collaboration between mother and baby.

British mother Jody Danielle Fisher shared the miracle of this collaboration on Facebook recently after having her 13-month-old child vaccinated.

In the post, she compared the color of her breast milk before and after the vaccination, to show how a baby's reaction to the vaccine has a direct effect on her mother's milk production.

Keep Reading Show less
Photo by Picsea on Unsplash
True

It is said that once you've seen something, you can't unsee it. This is exactly what is happening in America right now. We have collectively watched the pot of racial tension boil over after years of looking the other way, insisting that hot water doesn't exist, pretending not to notice the smoke billowing out from every direction.

Ignoring a problem doesn't make it go away—it prolongs resolution. There's a whole lot of harm to be remedied and damage to be repaired as a result of racial injustice, and it's up to all of us to figure out how to do that. Parents, in particular, are recognizing the importance of raising anti-racist children; if we are unable to completely eradicate racism, maybe the next generation will.

How can parents ensure that the next generation will actively refuse to perpetuate systems and behaviors embedded in racism? The most obvious answer is to model it. Take for example, professional tennis player Serena Williams and her husband, Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian.

Keep Reading Show less
Photo by Mahir Uysal on Unsplash

Two years ago, I got off the phone after an interview and cried my eyes out. I'd just spent an hour talking to Tim Ballard, the founder of Operation Underground Railroad, an organization that helps fight child sex trafficking, and I just couldn't take it.

Ballard told me about how the training to go undercover as a child predator nearly broke him. He told me an eerie story of a trafficker who could totally compartmentalize, showing Ballard photos of kids he had for sale, then switching gears to proudly show him a photo of his own daughter on her bicycle, just as any parent would. He told me about how lucrative child trafficking is—how a child can bring in three or four times as much as a female prostitute—and how Americans are the industry's biggest consumers.

Keep Reading Show less

Believe it or not, there has been a lot of controversy lately about how people cook rice. According to CNN, the "outrage" was a reaction to a clip Malaysian comedian Nigel Ng posted as one of his personas known as Uncle Roger.

It was a hilarious (and harmless) satire about the method chef Hersha Patel used to cook rice on the show BBC Food.


Keep Reading Show less