Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Mountain Surfing Safari

This past weekend, as part of my continual quest to explore somewhere I’ve never been before, I went for a hike on the Ceran St. Vrain Trail, which is located near Jamestown, CO.

The trail begins over a long bridge with good up and down-stream views. As I crossed the bridge, I noticed that a group of industrious young people had tied a ski tow rope to the bridge, and were down in the water, holding on to the other end of the rope while standing aboard a boogie board and “surfing” in the small rapids below the bridge.

I had two thoughts.

One thought was that it seemed a bit on the risky side. The people engaging in this mountain surfing safari weren’t wearing helmets, and while the water was shallow and not moving very fast, a fall the wrong way could have possibly resulted in an unprotected head engaging in an unpleasant and unscheduled meeting with a rock. They weren’t wearing life jackets, either, and again, though the water was shallow and relatively slow moving, creeks can be unpredictable.

My second thought? Man, that looks like fun.

I don’t think those two thoughts were contradictory. In fact, I think they fit together perfectly. Sometimes in life, taking reasonable risks can result in extremely positive experiences and outcomes. It can result in memories that last a lifetime, of longtime friends gathering together and saying “remember that time we did that?”

So much of what we do at Imagine! is about creating those moments. We are closest to meeting our mission of creating a world of opportunities for all abilities when we stretch ourselves and those we serve to find those moments that will last in memories forever.

We can’t forget that the best things in life happen to people when we push boundaries and look for new opportunities. All of us, regardless of our ability or disability, can experience a more robust life when we can make choices and take responsibility for those choices. Without occasionally stepping outside of our comfort zone, none of us will have opportunities to experience either the thrill of victory or the agony of defeat.

As summer wears on, I want to remind my readers that services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) shouldn’t be reduced to merely ensuring safety and well-being. Of course those concerns must be paramount, but every effort must also be made to allow the individuals who accept services from us to truly engage in life, including creating opportunities for them to say, “remember when we did that?"

Then again, what do I know?

1 comment:

  1. Next, vacuum your interior. If you want to clean any stains on your upholstery, do it now. Clean your windows with the glass cleaner and paper towels.

    فتح ابواب سيارات