I think we have all gone through struggles and had to search for ways to get through. As a sophomore at the Air Force Academy, I found myself in this position. One brisk fall night I got an email from one of my academic advisors saying my grades were not good and unless I turned around fast, I could be saying goodbye to all of my closest friends before the year’s end. Wow. I curled up on my bed looking out the window at the October snow and called my mom. “I worked so hard to reach my goal to get into this school…what would happen if I got this far and then had to leave?” I said to her. It was an emotional night for both of us. I just couldn’t fathom having to leave. I couldn’t see myself any place else.
A couple days later I sat in mass thinking about the warning I had just received. I glanced down at the church bulletin and there I saw it in big bold letters: “Just show up and I’ll supply the rest!” I’m not saying you have to take this message in a religious way. This can be interpreted any way you like but for me, it was God saying ‘Give me everything you’ve got and I’ll help you out.’ It was my sign not to give up hope and keep trying. What else can you do in a situation like that but give it all you’ve got? After applying that philosophy, I grew and eventually I graduated.
To this day, I still reflect on those words and truly believe they helped me get through my struggles at the time.
I was reminded of the quote after recently hearing a friend’s story about quilting material. My friend, John and his wife go on a road trip every couple months to visit his 93-year-old mother. On the way home, John’s wife always stops at a specific quilt shop to get some supplies. This particular trip John was alone. He thought it might be nice to stop and get his wife some supplies but he also thought, ‘I don’t know the first thing about quilting; I wouldn’t even know what to buy.’ He was torn. ‘Should I go?’ ‘Should I not go?’ Finally, he just decided to go with no plan in mind. He walked in alone and the women recognized him immediately. “Hi John!” they exclaimed. With no exchange of words the women working in the quilt shop knew what he was thinking and said, “Don’t worry. We know exactly what she’ll like.”
John showed up and the rest was provided. His wife loved the material.
These words have helped me improve in many aspects of my life especially getting to the gym. I’ve realized for me, half the battle is getting there.
Are You Showing Up?
I hope it can help you too whether it be applying to your dream school, going to a job interview, letting a friend know you are there for them, taking that extra lap in a workout or something as simple as getting out of bed in the morning.
I am proud to say I ‘showed up’ after seeing those words and I’m so thankful I did because I’ve
continued to be challenged by the Air Force and learned how to continually grow since then. I guess sometimes when you “just show up” you find even more than what you came for.