“The best things in life are worth waiting for, fighting for, believing in, and never letting go of.” – Unknown
I think it should be safe to say that each generation views the younger as having life much easier and even handed to them on a silver platter at times. We have all heard the story of having to walk to school uphill in the snow, both ways, barefoot. The lesson here to be told is when you have to work hard for something, it becomes much more valued and appreciated. My grandfather imparted this hard knocks lesson to me when I was a child. I remember helping him one morning, as the summer’s usual, from early morning harvest to delivery of the 2 ton cabbage order. The treat upon delivery was we got to go out to do weekly grocery shopping, pick up lunch, and stop by the nearby local frozen goody shop. Load me up with a bulky, wet, 60 pound bag of heads in the cold morning dew- and I will load that truck and tractor through knee high soil and rotting cabbage to get that satisfaction of Papa’s approval and the 5 minute gratification of that frozen treat.
It did not take long for this reward system to accelerate the slippery slope, as the true lesson was not quite learned. I figured, I show up and deserve a reward. Wrong sonny. It was on one of those very same days of recourse I found myself looking up at a row of glistening hand made ukulele, made of beautiful koa wood. To my understanding at the time, I figured I was a good kid, I showed up and worked today, he loved me and so my papa should buy this ukulele for me. For that entire summer I learned the lesson of value. He promised from then on to pay me for time spent in the fields; and with that money he would generously match my contribution to one day buy that coveted Kamaka Ukulele high up on the Longs Drugs Store shelf. Let me tell you expectations increased when money was on the line, but I still have that very same ukulele to this day in it’s case like brand new, mint condition. Earned it, valued it, and took great care of it.
How many friends or family members have we seen with the entitlement mentality, expecting, and even demanding of more or better- only to be disparaged. We see it now with kids in middle school and high school on their 5th and 6th iphone because they’ve either been broken or lost. Of course, how could we not see and desire bigger and better in the culture we now live in brimming with reality TV. stars, credit cards, and plastic surgery? The great of today is no longer of value, or outdone, come tomorrow. Or as our grandparents would say, “kids these days don’t appreciate anything.” It is about time we take time to slow down and recognize all that we should be grateful for. The only shame is that we devote just one day a year to articulate our prevailing appreciation for all things great and small.
The first Americans, or pilgrims as we know them today, took days of religious fasting and followed by a harvest feast to give thanks each year; that they survived their Mayflower passage, the New England elements, the natives, and were able to cultivate a crop. George Washington later proclaimed a related day to acknowledge gratitude of the ending of the American Revolution and beginning of our country. Abe Lincoln declared the official U.S. holiday as we know it today at the height of the Civil War. His urge was for Americans to pray God, “commend to his tender care of all who have become widows, orphans, mourners, and sufferers in the lamentable civil strife…[and to] heal the wounds of this nation.” And so officially we celebrate the last Thursday of November our day of Thanksgiving.
Most of us do not know such trials of civil strife or struggle to weather foreign season without provisions. How grateful we should be that we can fill up gas in our cars, drive down the freeway to the store, buy a slaughtered and cleaned turkey, swing by Starbucks for an iced latte, turn a knob and cook that bird full of our favorite dressings, and sit around a warm table of mixed company to share the many blessings we truly appreciate in life. In Hawaii we have a saying- Ho’omaika’i I Ka Mea Hiwahiwa; being grateful, and thereby making better that which you appreciate. As hard as life may be, seek out and recognize the many things to be grateful for. Family, health, education, a job, the roof over your head, warm bed, food on the table, clean air to breath, fresh water to drink, a shoulder to lean on, an ear to call out to, your sanity… these are some of the many reasons to give thanks. Your Results family of staff, coaches, and teammates are sure to be included in on that list as well. Those hard earned pounds down are just another way to show our appreciation for our bodies and the value of the life we live. Thank you all for your continued trust in your coaches, transparency in the process, support and encouragement of your teammates, and always battling beyond the burn and sweat for the best you yet. Hau’oli La Ho’omaika’i!