Happy Birthday America! Reposting because it matters.

Posted every year, because it matters.

Have you ever discovered something in your travels that you feel is the best kept secret in the world?

I have discovered the very best July 4th parade.  This will be my 8th  year attending this fabulous parade. I look forward to it every year.

I love a parade. I am not quite sure what it is that gets me so excited, so emotional, so happy.  Is it the passion of its purpose, the dedication of the organizers,  the commitment of the individuals?  Maybe it is the respect, the integrity and the honor of the day.

This parade is special.  There is only ONE rule.  You must wear red, white, or blue.  You may either participate or be a spectator.

The first time I was invited to attend the parade,  I wore my red and white  dress, and stood waiting for the parade. The anticipation was building, the excitement was exploding, and the emotions started rising.

And I, the lone spectator, watched with pride as this family walked down their driveway.  Everyone (including the dogs) decked out in red, white, and blue, carrying flags. There was an old beat up jalopy with a boom box blasting patriotic songs, and I was thrilled to witness this patriotism.

The emotions rose within me again.  Was it their dedication to a purpose, their passion for freedom, their love of family? Maybe it was the respect for each other to show up and honor the freedom that others have fought so hard for. Maybe it was the brunch that followed.

What I do know.

They show up every year in their red, white, and blue, with dogs and babies and tradition, ritual, commitment, integrity and honor in tow. They show up and they walk up and down their long driveway, not for the spectators, because there really are none, other than Omi and I. They have a parade because they can and because it matters.

We go with excitement and clap for this amazing family that walks together with laughter and love and happiness, honoring the celebration of the day and the celebration of freedom. They have a parade…Just because they can.

If you want to know the best kept secret and where the parade is, listen up.   It’s in your own driveway. Dress up in red white and blue, carry a flag, and walk with passion for your freedoms.

Happy Birthday, America. Let Freedom Ring!

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