Stories Lived

Sweeter Than You’d Think

Sweeter Than You’d Than Think is a story about the power of having a positive attitude amid difficult circumstances. Terry Roberts is a recovering cancer survivor living in Chicago, IL. His condition makes his prospects of getting employment almost impossible. So, everyday Terry goes out on the streets to ask people for money. Terry has the benefit of a social security check, something that many people who must ask for money don’t have, but that alone is not enough to meet his needs.

While on the street, Terry saw how many people were in a similar situation as him. He saw how many people were asking for the generosity of others, and Terry wanted to be able to give back something to the people who showed him any form of kindness, even if it was something small. Terry decided to give candy. He started gathering as much candy as he could find, some suggestions of people he met and some were personal favorites of his from childhood. With every piece of candy, the connection between Terry and the people he met on the street grew.

Much of life is about mindset. It is very easy to become discouraged when faced with difficulty. Terry went through this. He was angry, and didn’t understand why these things happened to him. But instead of making his life about sorrow, it made it a life about learning and giving positivity to those he met. It’s a conscious decision that he lives with every day. He has seen that despite individual circumstances we all want the same things from life: love, acceptance, and respect. And when we give those things to one another we have greater compassion and understanding of people who are different than we are. Terry lives in a way that can be an example to people everywhere.

About the Filmmaker
Submitted by Julius Burchett

Julius Burchett began working professionally in college. He started at an independent media company working as a treatment writer and editor for music videos. He later directed several videos and served as the executive producer from 2011-14.

In 2011, he interned with the City of Houston’s media department under Mayor Annise Parker. He reported about city events ranging from the Houston 4th of July celebration to weekly city council meetings, writing, voicing, and editing news packages.

In 2012, he co-founded a non-profit organization, Legendary. Aside from his co-founder role, he also served as website coordinator. He created content for the website ranging from interviews, the monthly newsletter, and promotional video.

He has been independently contracted to shoot video for, the NBA, and BET.

He is currently receiving his Master’s Degree in Digital Media and Storytelling at the Loyola University Chicago School of Communication. He received his Bachelor’s Degree in Communication from Prairie View A&M University.