How I make my way through life

Jason - Filer, Idaho
Entered on April 9, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: family, legacy, work

I believe in working hard.

As a child I watched my father in his efforts to support our family. I remember him coming home after a day’s work with his tattered straw hat on his head, his clothes and boots covered in dirt, then grabbing onto his thickly calloused hands and asking him how his day went. His reply was always the same, “Another good day of work.” I never realized how hard my father worked until I was older and could work with him. My father loves construction and it has been his career for the majority of his life. I often work alongside him. I am a laborer, I set forms to place the concrete in, place the concrete, and help finish it- all very physically demanding duties. Work is done outside in temperatures ranging from 30 to 100 degrees. Work begins at 6am. As I work through the brisk summer morning temperatures rise and I start to sweat. By mid afternoon the sun burns my skin, my back and hands ache from tying rebar all day, my body is exhausted. Only 2 more hours until the day is done.

Through observation and hands on experience I learned how to work hard. I have felt the pain in my hands from countless slivers and blisters; I have felt the pain in my legs and whole body from lumber hauled day after day, the countless walls lifted, and thousands of yards of concrete poured. These are pains that will never be forgotten, and will benefit me for the rest of my life, be it on a construction site or in an office. The habits learned from hard work can be applied anywhere in life.

This ability to work hard proved beneficial to me in my service as a missionary in the Amazon region of Brazil. It was not always pleasant working in 100 degree temperatures with 100 percent humidity in a shirt and tie with dress slacks. I walked around 12 to 15 miles a day, and this was not easy on my feet. I would arrive home at nights exhausted and wet with sweat. Then proceed to peel the sweaty socks off my feet to reveal giant blisters on my heels looking as if they were going to explode, but I did not let this deter me from working. The next day I would wear a different pair of shoes so that they would not rub the same place on my heel. I could have taken it easy and not worked hard with no one there to supervise my companion and me, but the work ethic I learned at home from my dad would not permit me to do such a thing. With this strong work ethic my companions and I were able to help many people know where true happiness can be found. I believe this ability to work hard will continue to prove beneficial to me throughout my life.