Hello from Clover Creek, Oregon Territory aka Montpelier, Idaho!!!
How is everyone? What are you doing this year that is new? What are you leaving behind from last year? What are the things you are doing now that you've never done before?
The transition from 2019 to 2020 and then to 2021 has been unique right?? It has been as transformative as walking from winter into full on summer in just a few minutes!
The transformation for me has been night to day. The things that I thought were important in 2019 , definitely weren't important in 2020 and 2021. My focus, my goals and my pace were changed overnight. I would compare it to a speeding train hitting a concrete wall.
Now the funny thing about all this is that all summer we would interact with guests and teach them all about how the Oregon Trail changed the lives of its emigrants. There is a big difference between talking about the pioneer's lives and LIVING their lives!
You might say, "we haven't lived their lives." But lets go back and look at what happened spring of 2020. Did we not see big changes in our lives? Did we not see people loose their jobs, become homeless, become separated from loved ones, watch loved ones die? Didn't we all leave a life we once new and strike out into new and strange territory, not knowing where it would lead us, not knowing from day to day if we would live to see the next day?
How many of us took the time while in isolation to clean out our homes of the clutter of life and focus on what truly mattered? My grand father used to say, "Only do the things that will matter in 100 years." Well, I don't know about you but that sure eliminates things quickly!
One thing is distinctly clear, these last couple of years have changed us all. Now the question is, what will we do with the changed life we have? Will we go back to the old life or move forward with new knowledge, energy and commitment to only focus on the things that will matter in 100 years?
How did those Oregon Trail Pioneers keep putting one foot in front of the other? How could they keep going when they were dog tired and discouraged. What did THEY do that would matter to us today?
I feel that when the hard times came to them they all pitched in and helped one another. They became a rolling community. When someone experienced loss, sickness or injury others stepped up and helped.
Another great thing my grandfather used to tell me was, be nice to EVERYONE because you just don't know who will hold your head when your dying! Why does it take natural disasters, chaos, or hard times to motivate us to help each other? You know, if the pioneers wouldn't have pulled together and helped each other they would have never made it to Oregon.
So what can WE do to make the next few years of our lives more rich, more meaningful, more purposeful? My plan is to slow down, notice people around me, ask God who needs me today? Then act on the answers. When you see someone 98% of the time they are hurting, sad or discouraged. Can we be a littler kinder, compliment someone? Can we be slower to anger? Can we care more about our loved ones than money?
Life is never guaranteed, so let's go at each day as though it was our last, let's treat people as if they were our friends or loved ones. Let's try "UNITY THROUGH COMMUNITY".
Becky Smith, Clover Creek