Saturday, June 17, 2017

Just Jump In

After nine months of school and a seemingly endless winter, I am so glad summer has finally arrived! I love to get outside with friends and enjoy the great Minnesota lakes and woods. One of my favorite summer adventures happened last year as school ended. Along with a group of friends, I embarked on a journey to Lake Superior so we could spend a few days together before we would head our separate ways as our summers became filled with work, camps, and activities.

The six of us began our trip by hiking at Gooseberry Falls and rolling up our pants to wade in the icy river. We continued on our road trip until we reached our destination for the week: Honeyrock, a unique cabin set right on the rocky Superior shore. We spent the next few days exploring boulders on the beaches, hiking on the cliffs looking out hundreds of feet above the lake, singing every song we knew together, and watching the shooting stars at night. I was content with how our week was going, but my friend Noah wasn't quite satisfied. He was looking for more thrills and more daring adventures. Noah decided we should take the plunge and jump into the frigid waters of Lake Superior. Because we were fearless explorers, we agreed hesitantly to his request. 

After much persuasion, we stood in our swimsuits huddled on the rocks as the icy waves rolled into the bay. I was less than thrilled about the idea of jumping into the arctic waters, but after lots of encouragement, I stood out on the edge of the boulders in the chilly wind. I didn't know what to expect jumping in. How cold would it really be? Would I be able to get out again before I turned into a popsicle? As I paused at the edge of the rock seriously considering heading back to the shore, a chorus of “Go!” “Just jump” and “Do it for the adventure!” rang out from my friends on shore. So I just jumped in. The water was colder than I thought water could be without freezing, and I raced out of the lake to the shore. Though it wasn't necessarily a comfortable experience, I smiled and laughed with my friends after it was over. We were glad we had tried something new and hadn't settled for the usual adventures.

In the same way, we often forget that we have new, incredible opportunities around us all the time. As summer starts and we go on to our own adventures, whether it be showing animals at the fair, going to camp, or hanging out with friends, we need to remember to seek out new things and to really plunge into new opportunities. Sometimes we need to leave our comfort zones, and sometimes the water will be cold, but in the end we only have one life to live. So just jump in and try something new this summer. Find something that you have always wanted to do and give it a whirl! When is the last time you did something for the first time?

Stationed by the rising sun,


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