My husband is incredible. He collects amazing friends like other people collect fine wine.
That's why we have a rag-tag, whip-smart band of brothers who visit us when they come into town. They stay with us and change our world.
Max visited last year. He’s a Grad student at Columbia University and co-founder, with Joel Bergner, of a group called Artolution. They travel the world and use art to reach disadvantaged communities. They also make 'Foundstruments' from recycled material. My husband's on the Board of Artolution, and it's a privilege to mentor two young visionaries.
The most amazing thing about Max is how he changes the world.
He does it person by person.
He believes we change things one relationship, one conversation at a time.
We’ve had a lot of houseguests over the years, and Max has a special place in our hearts. He gave the gift of hospitality to us, in our own home. Everywhere I looked, I found Max quietly giving something back...by sharing himself.
Do you know someone like that? My second sister, Dar, is the same kind of quiet soul. It's so rare. It really is.
Person by person in our family, Max changed us – just like he’s changing the world. Our younger son was sick and Max sat with him and played his beautiful hapi drum. Our teenager loves his cello; after dinner Max curled up in a chair and sketched him playing, then gifted him the little portrait that's still in the centre of his bulletin board.
In the morning, I let Max sleep in. He'd spent a couple of weeks with an Aboriginal community in Australia and was wiped out -- emotionally and physically -- from all his sharing.
Through my 'mum's eyes' I saw that Max needed a lot of sleep and a tray of fresh vegetables alongside his plate at every meal. Hours after the family went off to Saturday sport, I knocked on Max's door.
'Come in!' he called -- and there he sat, bundled up in a clean white duvet with his dreadlocks spread on the pillow, the Australian sun shining across his face. Reborn.
He looked like a wild, happy angel.
A world changer.
Max, wherever you are, caring for refugees and children, making art, changing things, bless you. May the world also take care of you.
Want to learn more? You can find Max on Facebook or Instagram @artolution or watch a CNN news clip here: https://www.facebook.com/CNNconnect/videos/10155109631146562/
<All photos were sourced from Artolution's various sites, mainly Facebook and Instagram, so you'll find the originals there. Enjoy!>