20 girls. 7 female leaders. 2 male leaders. 1 houseboat. Many lessons learned. (more…)
I just got back from trek. Trek is a church activity that spans a couple of days. Teenagers along with their adult leaders dress up in pioneer clothes, put their very few items that they can bring in a 5-gallon bucket, toss the buckets in a two-wheeled handcart that they then pull for miles each day to hopefully help them understand just a tiny bit of what the early pioneers felt as they walked across the plains to get to Utah in the 1800s.
As you can imagine, most teenagers are not excited to throw on their bloomers or khaki pants to pull a wagon for several days in the summer heat, and I was feeling that same way. I realized the night before that I cannot have a bad attitude going into this because that will not help the 200 teenagers that are going to be dragging their feet. I thought to myself that I am going to smile and learn something!
I am glad I changed my attitude. I learned a few lessons from trek that I thought I’d share.
Make unexpected happenings into an Adventure
By the second day of the trek everyone was pretty worn-out. We had walked 15 miles in 2 days and we all just wanted to sit and relax at our campsite. We had just trekked into camp when we see the darkest clouds making their way over to us. Seagulls were flying all around in a frenzy which made all of us begin to panic, and just like a switch that gets flipped on and off, the rain was flipped on, and it was turned on HIGH.
Huge raindrops, loud thunder, and intense lightning came for us. We had 3 easy-ups that had been set up around our food area and it was a race to attach the side panels to create a more rain resistant shelter. One of the amazing youth leaders was running from side to side attaching the Velcro with the biggest smile on her face. She came back under the easy-up with her hair stuck to her wet face and her arms raised up in the air shouting “this is an adventure!”
If I was her, I’d have slumped back under the easy-ups with nothing but negativity. I would be focused on how wet I was and how dinner preparation was not going as planned, but this amazing leader took a completely different approach. Instead of being down-trodden she was excited to figure out how to prepare dinner in a different way than was planned.
Dinner was made and it was delicious.
I know it is so hard to have a good attitude when plans don’t go as we expected, but there is so much good that comes when we see “Plan B” as an “adventure” rather than a “back up.”
Wearing the right shoes is imperative for support
We had a sweet girl that decided to wear boots instead of her trusty tennis shoes and it showed by the end of the first 8-mile day. Her feet were covered in blisters. A member of the medical team we had there even said that she may not be able to trek the next day. Needless to say, she had a whole lot of duct tape and moleskin on her poor feet.
Yes, the combat boots went better with her floral skirt, but the tennis shoes would have been able to give her the support that her feet needed. While I was trekking along I was thinking about support systems as I was thinking of this poor girl’s feet. If we surround ourselves with the support system, we can avoid a lot of hurt.
My mind instantly went to the movie MEAN GIRLS. When Lindsey Lohan, the main character, hangs around the mean girls she just ends up getting burned over and over again. She finally learns her lesson and surrounds herself with her family and people that care about her. Now, life will not be easy, but we can definitely lessen the amount of blisters we get on our feet depending on the support of our shoes.
make the unexpected into an adventure! No more sitting around and ruminating over the changes – embrace it. Also, make sure to surround yourself with a support system that will prevent the blisters, rather than cause them.
Have you ever had your mind so set on something that you could picture every single detail? Who would be there. What you would be wearing. What you would eat. What the weather would be like. Maybe this is your wedding day. A graduation. First day of a dream job. For me, this was the Boston Marathon.
My husband comes from a large extended family that has a tradition that I love. When someone in the family is getting married, a few months prior to the big day, they hold a family wedding shower. At the famous wedding shower, not only are most embarrassing moments shared, but tidbits of wedding advice are given to the engaged couple. While the couple opens a gift, the couple that gave the gift imparts their greatest wedded-life wisdom. I learned quite a bit that day from couples of all stages. There were couples that have been married for 50+ years and some that were married for just a few months – all jumped at the opportunity to share something that they love about their relationship.