Do you believe everything happens for a reason?
Lonnie Ballentine does. He's known as Mr. Irrelevant, but he holds his beliefs very relevant and in some cases, reverent.
He says he's a believer and knows there's a reason he was selected as the final player in the 2014 NFL Draft. There's a reason a boy who became a man in Memphis, Tenn. would end up in the Newport Beach waters on a surfboard doing his best to ride waves and show what he calls swag.
That's his confidence.
"To me it's all about swag," said Ballentine as he sat on the patio near the pool at the Island Hotel just before an Arrival Party at the Dunes. "You gotta go out there like: 'I can do this.' Saying: 'I got swag about myself and I know I can hop on that board and make something happen.'"
Ballentine used his confidence to surf Wednesday morning at 30th Street, starting a full day of fun during the 39th Irrelevant Week in Newport Beach.
Ballentine, a free safety out of Memphis selected No. 256 by the Houston Texans, stood up on his board for about two seconds, making his coach Jeff Cyr very proud.
He also made his family proud and happy, fulfillment during another gorgeous, sunny day in Newport Beach.
So what does Ballentine's wife think of her husband being the 39th Mr. Irrelevant?
"He's gonna be relevant," Brittany said. "Just wait on it."
The couple brought their two daughters, London, 4, and Laila, 2.
London hasn't been able to stop talking about Disneyland, as the girl is looking forward to Friday's big family event where Dad will be "honored" as Mr. Irrelevant.
Ballentine and his wife know Laila is also here for a reason.
The 2-year-old was born Down syndrome. This year's charity for Irrelevant Week, as part of the Foundation of the Undefeated, is Southern California Special Olympics.
The Foundation for the Undefeated champions stories of perseverance.
Ballentine and his family know about perseverance.
"We found out that she had Down syndrome a little after birth," Brittany said. "I wouldn't trade this experience for anything in the world. She's amazing. We enjoy every thing with her. She's just as normal as any other child. She opened up our eyes to a lot of things. We love her so much."
Mr. Irrelevant said his strong family circle has provided him strength to accomplish great feats in football, and to be a devoted father and husband. He said he became excited when he learned of this year's charity.
"People don't understand how much joy they can bring to you and how much joy you can bring to them," Ballentine said of those with Down syndrome. "Just being able to go out there and interact with them it's fun."
I was grateful to share stories of our girls with Ballentine, as my daughter was born Down syndrome.