Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Seeing the Bigger Picture

Whenever the team has some down time we all like to use it differently; but, a few of us, including myself, like to set up our hammocks on the point. In fact, just the other day we watched a wedding from that location! One night while hammocking I asked my teammates “what is the one thing from your childhood that has undoubtedly made you, you?” Initially, I expected to hear about the activities they did as a kid, but I received this response: “my family”. After a long conversation it fell quiet and I had time to reflect on my own. “Family” has many different meanings for many different people, but let's think about it. When was the last time you appreciated what you do have? I know for me it wasn’t until this conversation that I learned how fortunate I am, but I haven’t always thought that. 

Growing up my family was always on the go between school, sports, livestock, work, and the countless other activities us kids were involved in. I remember sitting in my school's athletic hall as an 8th grader waiting for my mom to pick me up. I was so angry at her for being 30 minutes late and wondered why she couldn’t be on time for once. When tournaments and games rolled around I would blame my parents for my poor performance. This same attitude came about when showing livestock. I would throw a major fit when I was told we had to wash sheep or pack the trailer because I didn’t want to do it. The entire process was almost unbearable because of my attitude. As a kid, I couldn’t grasp why my dad made me do the hard work. In retrospect, I was simply being selfish and didn’t appreciate what was really in front of me. My parents were right beside me giving me the best life possible and teaching me those hard lessons. I would get so caught up in my own emotions that I didn’t even think about what my parents were going through. They were always working to provide us with a home and the opportunity to do anything our hearts desired. I was able to show sheep with my siblings and play on travel sports teams because of my parents' efforts. Now remember all families look different, but think about what your family has been doing for you. Are you complaining like I was? Are you failing to see the bigger picture?

Ever since the hammock conversation I’ve cherished the time spent with my family a bit more. In fact, I recently had the opportunity to attend a sheep show with them. It was one of the most enjoyable shows because I was simply thankful to be with them doing what we love. I encourage you all to take a step back and genuinely enjoy your time with those you love most. After all, we never know what this life may hold, so let's enjoy it with “our people” while we have the chance.  

Appreciating what I have, 

Kylie Schakel

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