The Stuff Kids Teach You…

Originally Posted on December 18, 2013 by BJ Howell.

This week was an awesome week where I was reminded that every day is a day to learn new things and live life to the fullest. It also reminded me that we need to continue to find positive ways to interact with (and teach) our youth. I’ve spent the last 3 days on a retreat with a bunch of students who were full of life and laughter. Looking at how they view the world (and life) brought back many memories. Somewhere along the way I forgot to “smell the roses”. Not sure if it’s this thing we call adulthood, or if it is me just being too serious, but I’ve been griping and grumbling about December because it came too soon and is filled with “to dos” that I can’t seem to get done. I need to remember that sometimes it is not about the “to dos” but it’s about the “right nows”. It’s about connecting with others in a positive way and living in the present.

-These kids reminded me that life is meant to be lived. Fully…In the present…And without fear.
-They taught me that relationships are as important as the air we breathe. Whether friend or family, being connected in laughter and love is essential.
-They taught me that God can start with a select few who are able to reach out and touch others in powerful ways. And those who are selected don’t gripe because they are young or feel like they are missing out on their teen years, rather it is fully embraced without remorse or embarrassment but as if they were born to take on that role.
-Some of these kids taught me that all is not lost. There is another generation coming up that can change the world. They also taught me that there are enough lost and off track that we need to invest more time and energy into guiding, teaching and encouraging those who are still reachable.
-They taught me that sometimes you have to step outside of your comfort zone, because if you don’t, you miss out.

This week I have experienced being on a hay ride, toasting marshmallows and eating Parflesnarf (yes, this is how you spell it, and yes, it is something you can eat), which were all firsts for me. While I didn’t enjoy all of them, I did enjoy the fact that I was stepping outside of my comfort zone. Being around these students reminded me that sometimes we just have to live. Forget about the “to dos”, forget about the worrying, and complaining about the things that aren’t going the way we envisioned they would go…and just live. Life is way too short to spend it living with regrets of what you wish you would have done. Do it! NOW!

Live life to the fullest. Invest time in our young adults. Make time for the ones you love. Tomorrow always comes so don’t waste your today worrying about it. Live life fully in the present and enjoy every minute of it. You are worth it. You deserve it…And only you can make that happen. So, in the words of one of my favorite authors…
“…be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray
or Mordecai Ali Van Allen O’Shea,
You’re off to Great Places! Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting, So…get on your way!”

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