Faith in people isn’t always easy in today’s world. There are things that challenge our belief in our fellow man on a regular basis. (We’re looking at you producers of The Bachelorette.) What we usually fail to realize though is in the times when that faith is most challenged is when it has the most chance of being rewarded as well.
Thus was the case of young Hallee Sorenson and her 18th birthday.
Hallee is, as her cousin Rebecca Lyn describes her, “a beautiful young woman-both inside and out. She lights up a room with her smile. Hallee is funny, sweet, caring, smart, an athlete, a jigsaw puzzle champion, a wonderful student, and a best friend to all.” Oh, and she just happens to have autism. It’s not the only thing, just one of the many things, as Rebecca points out, that define her.
Recently a photo of Hallee sitting alone at her own 18th birthday party went viral. And not that kind of viral that marketers try to bottle up and sell claiming they’re experts in the field. No, the genuine kind that spreads because of our connections as human beings. The photo and a beautifully written post from her cousin describing how no one, despite numerous birthday party invitations being sent, showed up for Hallee’s birthday party last year, were shared on Facebook over 230,000 times.
The best part of the post? Rebecca’s plea to make sure Halle’s 19th birthday party is one to remember and the response it’s received.
According to WCSH6.com in Maine, Soreson has received over 50,000 envelopes containing well wishes for her birthday since the Facebook post went out.
The most impactful moment so far for Hallee though? Seeing herself on the cover of the newspaper when shopping for groceries recently.
It’s easy to lose faith in people. It would have been understandable if Hallee and her family had after her 18th birthday party. But sometimes, when we’re ready to give up, we’re rewarded with something truly special and our faith is renewed.
Happy birthday Hallee. Your story is a birthday gift to us all.