It's us again, here at the OM@home blog, a blog about children and young people, written for children and young people . . . . For young people just like you, about young people who inspire us all at OM HQ.
Young people like Matt Woodrum . . . .
Matt has cerebal palsy, a severe disability, and as a result, the most basic functions in life present a major challenge.
Things like walking, for instance . . . .
Not that Matt lets it hold him back.
Take the annual sports day, for instance, held last month at Colonial Hills Elementary, in Worthington, Ohio.
Matt didn't have to take part in the 400-meter race . . . .
But take part he did.
He might not have finished first, but Matt stole the show . . . .
This short film proves as much.
Matt moves and inspires us and it's our hope that his tale might make our readers think . . . .
'There were times when I felt like giving up,' the 11-year-old admits.
That Matt didn't give up says everything about him.
'He [just] pushes through everything,' says Anne, Matt's mom. 'He pushes through the pain and he pushes through however long it might take to complete a task'.
This is the stuff that motivates us and inspires our OMs, for Matt has the qualities encapsulated in all our efforts and stories like his are what our blogs are all about.
'You're not going to stop are you?' Matt's physical education teacher asked him as he began to struggle on the track last month.
'No way,' came the response.
Matt has courage and determination in abundance and this shows the amazing things that can be achieved if we just put our minds to it.
It also shines a light on the kindness and compassion of his classmates who supported and cheered him to the finish line and made this the tale it is.
The message we hope you take from this is twofold:
1) When the going gets tough, think about Matt and just keep at it.
2) When someone else is struggling, encourage and support them because together, great things can be achieved.
Here's to Matt, here's to his classmates and here's to pushing through it.