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Slowly learning to feel OK about taking a short vacation

Published: Wednesday, July 2, 2014 12:14 p.m. CDT • Updated: Wednesday, July 2, 2014 2:05 p.m. CDT

My girlfriend leaves for Europe on a three-week vacation with the Iowa Bandmasters Association. Their group will tour the continent playing in some of the most historic venues.

She is an adviser for the “yellow” bus and is playing trumpet for some of the performance pieces. I couldn’t be more proud of her for going on this journey.

I will also be taking my first major vacaction - starting today - from the Creston News Advertiser. But instead of touring the globe, I will be taking two days off playing slow pitch softball, sleeping in, eating Chick-Fil-A and preparing for Creston inaugural half marathon Thursday.

When I started at the Farmers Cooperative feedmill in Creston after my high school graduation in 2008, I was reluctant to take days off. I never knew what to do on a weekday that I didn’t have to work.

If memory serves me correctly, I called in sick once during my two years of working there with my father, who I believe only took one day off himself.

There were many, many more days I wish I would have taken off, but the work experience taught me valuable lessons about myself and improved my relationship with my father.

The struggle for me is having to tell someone a simple, two-letter word: no.

By not being at work, I feel like I am letting my coworkers down and neglecting and event or story that could have been covered.

But I am slowly learning the value of time management which, sometimes, requires a day off to recharge and spend time with loved ones.

I have not been dedicated to running like I wish I was during my junior and senior year of college. I want to get back to that level of fitness and self confidence, but again, having to tell someone or something no for a personal reason is a difficult pill to swallow.

I also want to spend more time with my girlfriend and help improve our relationship. We had a great, but short trip to Texas to visit my college friends about a month ago, but I hope we can take more trips in the near future.

I look up to more experienced journalist like Larry Peterson and I wonder when he ever finds time to sleep. Not only does he put in countless hours covering area athletics, he is constantly posting updates about spending time with his wife and sons.

But I know those experiences have come with some sacrifice. Being a sports reporter, I know Larry is tied up covering stories until late at night, forcing him to miss some events along the way.

And I am sure there are moments he has to say no and walk away from it all for a brief moment to make it all work.

Hopefully this minivacation will be exactly what I need to revamp my motivation for work, my personal life and my running.

I can’t wait to see all the runners, walkers and supporters out there July 3 for a great kick off to the Fourth of July celebrations and my vacation.

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