A rock by a house that overlooks fields for miles.
As the wind whips through the air disturbing everything around it, I sit on this rock relaxing, taking it all in. I notice one tree standing alone in a field. Leaves are being ripped off the tree. Branches bend and break left and right, falling to the ground. But the tree still stands tall. The wind blows harder and faster, but the tree won’t give in.
The tree was raised to never give up no matter how hard the wind blows, as I was raised to never give up when life doesn’t go my way. The trees in the forest have it easier than that tree in the field. These trees are protected by one another. They protect the wildlife of the forest, the rocks and sticks on the ground, the peace in the air; the trees are the guardians of the forest. They surround around the lake like the secret service surrounds the president. They are tight, not letting anything get to the middle.
Trees not only protect, but they provide a home. Squirrels climb the trees like they were born to do it. Birds perch themselves on the branches and sing their songs, letting everyone around know they are there. While sitting on my rock taking it all in, I noticed the wind and the trees more than anything. The wind picks up sharply, then slows down to a calm steady breeze, just strong enough to keep the mosquitoes off. The wind did not give any signs of picking up, it just picked up without question.
Fast wind, slow wind, the trees stand tall no matter how fast the wind is blowing. This is inspiration to me. Challenges in my life come and go like the wind. It may be calm, or it may be rough. Challenges don’t wait, they come in swinging, not caring who they hit. When a challenge approaches me I try to take it on as a tree would.
Standing tall. Recently I broke my wrist playing football. I play wide receiver, so my job is to catch the ball when it’s in the air. It’s hard to catch a football with a cast wrapped around my hand. The doctor said I could sit out if I wanted to let it heal. I told him I’d rather play than sit.
He looked at me. I looked back at him. He took out his pen, and wrote on the pink sheet of paper “good to go” and sent me on my way. Football practice came and I was nervous. I didn’t know how it was going to play out.
I warmed up on the side just playing catch, getting used to the plastic on my hand. I got used to it in practice, but then Friday came. The rules say I cannot play with a cast on, unless it is wrapped in padding and taped. I talked to our athletic trainer Angel, and she helped me out with my issue. I thought the plastic in practice was bad, a club like a caveman would hold is what I had to work with.
It was the hardest thing I have ever had to do. I played every down as though the club wasn’t there. I missed one ball, and that to me is still one too many. But I still kept going. I didn’t ask to break my wrist and have to play with a club on my hand. Challenges don’t ask to drop in, they come in swinging, and I found that out the tough way.
I thought to myself about those trees in the woods I saw earlier, and I told myself to stand tall and face my challenge. I worked ten times harder that next week in practice, giving it all I had, telling myself I can catch every ball that comes my way, and block anyone who tries to take me on. I was ready for Friday. My hard work had payed off. I used the club to my advantage on plays.
I took my challenge, and used it as a strength in game. It was not easy, but I got the job done. Now I have it off, and intend to appreciate both my hands way more from now on. Trees take on challenges as we should take them on. Standing tall.
No matter how big the challenge, or the difficulty. Face it head on, and with determination. If I’m feeling defeated I think about that lonely tree in the field. No matter how windy it is, or how cold it is, that tree is still there standing tall as ever. He doesn’t let the wind affect him. He stands there strong, ready, and tall.