Eleven years ago, two major things were going on in my life: the first is that I was turning nineteen. The second is I had met a girl.
Flash forward to today and that girl is my wife, and I am hours away from entering my thirties.
Somehow, this doesn’t feel like much of a milestone. I take that as a good thing, because it means I’m generally happy with the direction my life is going. But it does make me pause and reflect a little on how I went from there to here so that I can be as happy with the next decade of my life as I am with the last one.
I realize at the top of that list is people. Everything I am most grateful for is the direct result of someone else helping me, guiding me, pushing me or generally being there to move me along.
Last year at about this time, I got a phone call from a friend asking if I could ski. When I said yes, he told me we were signing up for the Prince George Iceman, a race I’ve thought about doing for years but never had. Even though cold weather cancelled last year’s even, we went out and did it just to do it, and we’ll be competing again next week. If it weren’t for that phone call, I probably wouldn’t be.
My wife is currently taking the steps to plan a trip to Turkey. I love travel, but she’s been the motivating force behind our trips, including a six-month experience in China that I talked about doing but probably wouldn’t have had she not actually figured out the logistics.
This past week, I helped our UNBC intern create a documentary about a Prince George man who has been helping fight Ebola. It’s a great piece, and it’s been picked up for airplay across the country. And it was almost five years ago to the day that I was being shown how to create my own audio piece about “International Soufflé Day,” a Prince George-made holiday that had been taking off a little. The piece was also picked up nationally and I credit it with helping secure my place with CBC.
Speaking of that piece, last week was the tenth anniversary of Soufflé Day and we were invited to the home of the event’s founders. Their tradition is to have people they don’t know very well come over, so it was basically dinner with strangers- and it was great.
I could go on- family, friends, mentors, co-workers, and even loose acquaintances who have positively affected my life every step of the way.
So what made my twenties work? Two things. The first is the relationships I already had that continued to grow. The second is the new people I’ve met who have also become important parts of my life.
So that’s my goal for the next decade: cultivate relationships, old and new. Friendships, mentorships, family. If I’ve learned anything over thirty years it’s that so long as you have the right people around you, it’s tough to go wrong.
Thanks for everything.
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