To my Kinderhook Elks family and friends,
Hard to believe it’s December already!!! At times life seems to be just passing you by, other times you can't keep up, sometimes it is amazing, but yet still there are times where you just want to say.... SCREW IT!!! I'M DONE.
We all have had those days, weeks, and sometimes months and years!! Perspective has a ton to do with how we look at something and how we react to what is going on. This past week has been chaotic, exciting, frustrating, annoying, vibrant, and a struggle and so many more adjectives, but for each person and every event and every thing that happens to you, or around you, is all decided on how you look at it. They say if there is a car accident that is observed by 40 people there are 40 different accounts as to what happened, who did what, what each person was wearing, where they were, what they were doing, so on and so forth. Isn't this the same way with things that happen at the Lodge?
One person's perspective on a function such as the special needs prom is - so much work for such a short period of time. Another person: such an uplifting event every person should experience it at least once in their life. If you attend one of these you'll be back for every one that you're able to attend. If you're having a bad day you think .... I can't believe I have to be at the Elk's again tonight. We see things from a different degree, but if we come together as a collective and we try and see things as an other does, they don't have be the exact view, but if we can approach things with an open mind, the event may just be a memory that will last in your heart forever.
I heard recently that people were afraid to talk to me because they are afraid I'm going to ...........to what? listen? react? come up with an idea or two to make a change to make things better? that I'm going to do have a meltdown? that I'm going to fly off the handle? REALLY? I have been a member of this Lodge for 16 years, seriously how many times have I had a meltdown or flew off the handle? Years ago, absolutely, if you pushed me too far I'd react!!! After being in the position I've been in, not only as a member but as a chair of this Lodge, and part of the team that runs this Lodge, I have changed.
I listen, I give my best advice, I try new things, I think I help the best way I know how, but this is where the problem comes in. What I think is helping someone else may think I'm trying to control the situation, I'm not listening, I'm not understanding, but isn't that all of us? Do we enter into a conversation with anger expecting to get a personal attack, are we worried about how someone feels about us or the way we do things? We swear to forget other's faults, but who decides what a "fault" is? You? your spouse? your friends? your clique? How about before we react we take the time to listen, to look at things from another's perspective, to listen without the purpose of responding? I know I am FAR from perfect, I mess up, I ask for forgiveness I ask for help when I don't get things, I try and that's all I can ask from any of you.
Life has some horrible traits, rumors fly while the truth needs a push. It's amazing how when the requests for workers goes out, the same people give up their time to help and there are those who are in it for what they get out of it. The few that do are getting tired, burnt out and older. I get it we all have work, family, outside commitments, things we do. We have a member that is upfront and honest that during the summer months he and his family are
gone on their boat, but they are also onboard to help during the winter months with cooking or helping on crews or whatever they can do. I am not asking you to give up your life for the Lodge, but I am asking you to take a step back and actually see the big picture, those that are always there, those that come when they can, those that have no time but give from their wallet or through donations of items or advertising.
I've said it before and I'll say it again, this isn't just my Lodge, it's your Lodge it's the Lodge that supports our community and each other, so as we close this year let's reflect on the good and as the new year approaches let's do with a twist. “Ask not what your country [or Lodge] can do for you - ask what you can do for your country [ or Lodge and community]" JOHN F. KENNEDY