Perhaps you too were saddened to hear of the passing of actor Robin Williams.
What makes him special, was that despite the mental illness demons that he fought during his life,
he was able to connect with all people at a very real level.
Few Hollywood actors can lay claim to that.
Many people suffer from mental illness, and sometimes you just can't tell from outward appearances.
As they say, you gotta walk in another man's shoes.
Personally, I find amateur astronomy an excellent way to deal with the daily stresses of life
that we all sometimes feel.
Hopefully, you do too.
All it takes is for me to look up and take notice of a particular object, and I find this to be quite soothing.
Christine Barnett, was the mother of an autustic son, who was trying to find a way to connect with her son
Jacob, and finding that the traditional methods just weren't working for him at his very young age.
One night, she took him out under the stars, and noticed his interest in the night sky and so
she started to talk about it to him, and encourage his interest.
She tells the story below, to Globe and Mail reporter, Sarah Hampson.
One day, she decided to take him to a planetarium, where a lecturer was
presenting a special program on Mars.
At one point, he asked the audience if anyone knew why the moons around Mars are elliptical.
Then Jacob put his hand up. "Excuse me, but could you please tell me the size of these moons?"
It was more conversation than his mother had heard from him in his entire life.
The lecturer answered him.
Her son then explained: "Then the moons around Mars are small, so they have a small mass. The gravitational effects of the moons are not large enough to pull them into complete spheres."
The room went silent.
He was 3.
Wow! That's pretty mindblowing.
Jacob is now 15 years old, and has an IQ higher than Einstein.
Likely, you will have an encounter at some point in your life, with someone that suffers from mental illness, or any other
And hopefully, like the late Robin Williams, you'll be present and accepting of that person.
"Nanoo. Nanoo. "
"Over and out".