Monday, February 8, 2010

Where Men Win Glory

I've recently been reading the newest Jon Krakauer book, Where Men Win Glory, and I'm thoroughly enjoying it.  It has brought my attention to events that I never knew happened and it has also made me evaluate my own life, pursuits, and motivations.  Today, I read a portion of the book that contained an excerpt from Pat Tillman's journal, just before he entered the military, walking away from a multimillion-dollar NFL contract.  The document was titled "Decision," and I thought some might enjoy the read.

Many decisions are made in our lifetime, most relatively insignificant while others life altering.  Tonight's topic....the latter.  It must be said that my mind, for the most part, is made up.  More to the point, I know what decision I must make.  It seems that more often than not we know the right decision long before it's actually made.  Somewhere inside, we hear a voice, and intuitively know the answer to any problem or situation we encounter.  Our voice leads us in the direction of the person we wish to become, but it is up to us whether or not to follow.  More times than not we are pointed in a predictable, straightforward, and seemingly positive direction.  However, occasionally we are directed down a different path entirely.  Not necessarily a bad path, but a more difficult one.  In my case, a path that many will disagree with, and more significantly, one that may cause a great deal of inconvenience to those I love.
     My life at this point is relatively easy.  It is my belief that I could continue to play football for the next seven or eight years and create a very comfortable lifestyle for not only Marie and myself, but be afforded the luxury of helping out family and friends should a need ever arise.  The coaches and players I work with treat me well and the environment has become familiar and pleasing.  My job is challenging, enjoyable, and stokes my vanity enough to fool me into thinking it's important.  This all aside from the fact that I only work six months a year, the rest of the time is mine.  For more reasons than I care to list, my job is remarkable.  
     On a personal note, Marie and I are getting married a month from today.  We have friends and family we care a great deal about and the time and means to see them regularly.  In the last couple months we've been skiing in Tahoe, ice climbing in Utah,  perusing through Santa Fe, visiting California, and will be sipping Mai Tais in Bora Bora in a little over a month.  We are both able to pursue any interests that strike our fancy and down the road, any vocation or calling.  We even have two cats that make our house feel like a home.   In short, we have great life with nothing to look forward to but more of the same.  
     However, it is not enough.  For much of my life I've tried to follow a path I believed important.  Sports embodied many of the qualities I deem meaningful: courage, toughness, strength, etc., while at the same time, the attention I received reinforced its seeming importance.  In the pursuit of athletics I have picked up a college degree, learned invaluable lessons, met incredible people, and made my journey much more valuable than any destination.  However, these last few years, and especially after recent events, I've come to appreciate just how shallow and insignificant my role is.  I'm no longer satisfied with the path I've been's no longer important.
     I'm not sure where this new direction will take my life though I am positive it will include its share of sacrifice and difficulty, most of which is falling squarely on Marie's shoulders.  Despite this, however, I am equally positive that this new direction will, in the end, make our lives fuller, richer, and more meaningful.  My voice is calling me in a different direction.  It is up to me whether or not to listen. 

If you're anything like me, you'll be pondering the words above for days to come!!!!


I am horrible about posting lately! It seems that our weekends have been filled with visitors and trips to the mountains since the holidays, which has not left Shane and I much time to slow down and rest. Although I am not working anywhere close to a 40 hour work week these days, I manage to fill up my weekdays with everything imaginable...from a challenging 6 mile run (pretty good for a former dancer who would only run a mile due to the fact that it would make my legs tight!) with my friend Jamee, to meeting and working with a designer to create a logo for my new business, reorganizing files for the new year, experimenting with new recipes (My latest favorite being homemade granola. I hope to try baking some sweet potato chips this week thanks to my friend Kristin!) and the not so fun never-ending duties of laundry and house cleaning. Today, I finally imported the pictures that were on my camera from Christmas to the computer. Little did I know how refreshing it would be to sit down, flip through pictures on iphoto, reflect and write a few words to whomever might read this blog. I wonder why is it so hard to sit down at times and just relax? Any thoughts? Well, here are a few snippets from the last month. Enjoy!
My Mom and Dad along with his office staff were out here a couple weekends ago for a dental convention in Denver. Shane and I had them over to our house a few times for dinner. We had a yummy breakfast one morning at the tea house in Boulder.

Cameran and Drew visiting from Indy!
While in Michigan with my family I convinced everyone (my sister, her husband Nick, Kim and her boyfriend Noah) to try out cross country skiing on our State Park trails! After a bit of hesitation I think that everyone ended up having a great time! We stopped along the beach afterward to take some pictures.
Lake Michigan
Nick and Lisa, taking one for the team. They were such troopers, after living in Dallas for a year, they are definitely tending towards warmer weather activities!
Nick, Noah, and I excited to hit the trail!
Yes, this is my moms cross country ski gear from who knows what decade. I loved the gaters and the wool knickers! She even let me take them back to Colorado with me.
Dad and Kim, enjoying the Christmas carols.
Nick's family came up to my parents house, along with my Aunt Judy and Uncle Mike. I think we had about 18 people there. His family is very musically gifted as compared to the not so musical "Sitler" family. We enjoyed listening to them play the piano and sing. It was such a great time for everyone!