Lessons from the Roller Rink

As some of you may not know (especially as I have not mentioned it on the blog before), I am a big sister in the Big Brothers Big Sisters in Northern Nevada. I love the program and the experience so far!

My match, or my Little as I’m used to calling him, is an adorable, precocious 8 year old whose favorite subject in school is recess and wants nothing more than to catch a frog as a pet. One of the activities he favors is roller skating, and to be quite honest, I wasn’t so fond of it at first.

However, this past Sunday on our second trip to the roller rink, my thoughts on the experience changed quite a bit – and it wasn’t just because I only fell once!

I had given platelets earlier in the day, so wasn’t feeling 100% for physical activity, so after a few unsteady rounds, I had to take a quick breather (ok more of head-stop-spinner). I was watching over the kids and some adults skating in their harmonious circle and there ended up being lessons to take from the group!

Falling is ok Kids were falling left and right and had the biggest smiles and laughs as they did so. Not only did falling not mean total failure at skating, but falling was sometimes a reason for celebration and was even done on purpose. When have you purposefully failed last? I can’t remember the last time. Let alone a time I failed with a smile!

Help each other out I was astonished to see the number of different kids helping each other out. Parents too were involved in random acts of helping; as their kids did better they would hand off the helpers that their kids no longer needed to the next struggling kid. This sense of community and watching out for one another was something all people and companies should aspire to. When’s the last time you helped someone in your line of work just for the companionship and goodwill?

Get out on the rink! The people that were having the most fun and truly enjoying the moment were those out on the rink. Even with falling and going slow and sometimes needing to avoid people who had fallen or were going slow, the most smiles were those found on the rink. Just go out there already!

So with a big smile, I went back out on the rink. I know I am supposed to be mentoring this kid, but I am learning quite a lot in the process. Giving can lead to quite a bit of receiving!

(I know, I know, quite cheesy but true!)

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