In a 2009 blog post, I described living “full throttle” as:
Living boldly without any fear (not reckless…just boldly)…able to take risks…able to chase your dreams….able to love with all your heart….
That’s exactly what I try to do on a daily basis – LIVE “full throttle.”
BUT since we moved to the country 6 months ago, I’ve also been GOING “full throttle,” which is a totally different ballgame. After we relocated to Glen Rose, I felt like I needed to jump into the community head first.
So. I. Did.
Every time that I drive down the road, and look in my rearview mirror, I’m reminded about my 6-month whirlwind. Hanging in the back window of my truck are a handful of garments that I’m “forced” to wear, depending on the day of the week and depending on the meeting that I’m scheduled to attend on that particular day.
There are two vests – one for the Lions Club and one for the Optimist Club. (Yes..I said vests.) They’re both civic organizations in town, and they both have philanthropic and inspiring missions.
The Lions Club meets twice a month during lunch and the Optimist Club meets at the crack of dawn two times a month (they serve biscuits and gravy to relieve the sting of the 7 a.m. meetings.)
It’s a great way for me to meet people and give back to this community that we’ve invaded.
After each meeting, I hang my vest back on its respected hanger and go on about my day.
On Tuesday nights, there are no vests. That’s when I don a T-shirt that says “Somervell County Fire Department.”
One of the first things that I did when we moved to the area, I reached out to the volunteer fire department. I went to a couple of meetings and then through the interview process.
In early February, I marked No. 22 off my current life list and became a volunteer firefighter for Somervell County.
Every Tuesday night, I remove my fireman’s t-shirt from the back window of my truck and go to training at the Fire House. My name is blazon on the front – so I guess I’m official.
To say being a volunteer fireman is awesome would be a HUGE understatement. It has to be the most hands-on and rewarding way that I’ve ever given back in my life.
Here are some highlights from my short time on the department:
• I have a fireman’s helmet with my name on it;
• I’m lobbying for a department-wide calendar, and
• Crash and I rode in one of the trucks for the Fourth of July parade.
All joking aside, I take this “job” very seriously. I love the camaraderie, the brotherhood and the physical aspect of being a firefighter. It blows my mind what I get to do.
I’ve already been on three structure fires, and I have a new appreciation for first responders who put their life on the line to protect and defend our communities.
It’s definitely full-throttle, and I’m proud to be part of this fraternity.
Other community endeavors that I’ve tackled during my brief stint in the country include:
– Web developer for the Paluxy Pedal, an annual bicycle race, and
– Board Member for the CVB Advisory Board
You HAVE to be asking yourself, “Why in the world is this newfangled country boy giving us his resume?”
Answer: I want everyone to know that I’m ALL IN (especially my family).
I’ve told several community leaders that I have an obligation to my family to make Glen Rose the best possible place to live.
One individual responded: “Your involvement will help with your real estate career, too.”
I quickly rebuked his statement.
“It has everything to do with my family,” I told him. “I practically bound and gagged my wife to get her to move down here. It’s my mission to help Glen Rose be the best it can be.”
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Lastly, I want to double back to my involvement in the Optimist Club. I specifically wanted to share the organization’s amazing creed. We read this at the end of every meeting, and it’s one of the main reasons I joined this group.
If everyone would live out this creed, the world would be a different place:
To be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.
To talk health, happiness and prosperity to every person you meet.
To make all your friends feel that there is something in them.
To look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.
To think only of the best, to work only for the best, and to expect only the best.
To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own.
To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future.
To wear a cheerful countenance at all times and give every living creature you meet a smile.
To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others.
To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.