Day One Thousand, Eight Hundred and Fifty

Hi Viewers,

Today was the most beautiful day I think I’ve ever experienced. The Best Buddies International Leadership Conference is unlike any experience I have ever had. There are thousands of students, buddies, staff, volunteers, ambassadors, and people here who have traveled from all over the WORLD to foster a kinder universe. The expression of this weekend is “inclusion lives here”. That means that people are going very far out of their way to promote inclusivity. This hit home for me a few moments today. When I walked into the massive Indiana U auditorium to see people screaming and cheering in their shirts. Mine, for Boston, says “wicked inclusive”. Everyone clamored to get their shirts, because here being inclusive and loving and compassionate is more than the norm, it’s the coolest thing you can do. I watched as one of the buddies strutted out on stage during the fashion show wearing a shirt about inclusivity and beaming ear to ear. The whole audience was cheering him on as if he was the biggest celebrity to walk the earth. Where else does that kind of joy and love happen? Personally, I hope we can foster it in our chapter at Tufts. There was a buddy who shared his story with us tonight. His mom was his fiercest advocate and only friend for most of his childhood, until he met his best buddy. They call each other brothers and they act accordingly. This year, when the buddy’s mom died, the two brothers went on a trip to Vegas to honor her memory. Isn’t that just the most beautiful!!I just can’t explain what tangible kindness and acceptance feels like, but it exists, and amongst the thousands of people that are here, it thrives.

XOXO. S.

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