The last few years Melinda and I have had grand aspirations to give back to society and, to a certain degree we’ve been somewhat successful. We did the Breast Cancer 3 Day six years in a row and raised a good amount of money to help find a cure to that terrible disease. We’ve also helped my father with charity events in his local rotary club. But aside from doing our best to be the best people we know how to be every day of lives we haven’t done much more than that.
Put simply, we’ve always wished we could more. A LOT more.
But the problem with making time to do philanthropy is that you will ALWAYS find something else in your life that needs doing. So you put it off with the hopes of doing it some other time that’s more convenient.
For us though, we discovered there are rarely “more convenient” times to do these things. So this last weekend we took some steps towards not over thinking the moment and “just doing it”. Mel saw an opportunity at a local park that we often take brief hikes at. They needed help with trail and boardwalk maintenance so we jumped at the chance to get outside and do some good. They only needed a couple hours of help so it was kind of no brainer for that day.
We were psyched to see so many folks donating time (mostly kids!) when we got there. It didn’t take too long before they divided us up into two groups. Mel and I got to be in the boardwalk maintenance group with about 10 other really nice people. We hiked down to the boardwalk with pressure treated lumber (always forget how heavy that stuff gets) and supplies and got to work! Mel and I volunteered to walk in new timbers and carry the old ones out.
All told, we ripped up 15 timbers that looked worse for wear and replaced them with new ones! We worked hard, we used our hands, got dirty, mingled with strangers, it was perfect! When finished, we stopped and looked at our finished work, it came out nicely I think! When our set time was complete, we said our good byes, hopped in the car, grabbed some lunch and went home to Cadence.
It’s so easy to get in ruts and routines in life. Melinda and I are very guilty of this, but we want to do more. When I think about all of the time I put into my day to day it’s pretty unnerving. You get to worried that this time you put in to your day job will somehow end up defining you. For us it simply doesn’t, so it was nice to take that baby step forward and put some time into something that does.
It felt really, really good and we can only hope do more.
Currently Listening to “Hints” by Jose Gonzalez off of his album “Veneer”