Have you ever heard of a sport called slacklining? Over a handful of years ago I was introduced to this new recreational activity by my younger brother, Mark. As a rock climber, he was around a great community of people who love the outdoors. They thrive on using their bodies to scale the earth, not only by traversing and scaling rock formations, but now also by suspending a rope between formations and walking the line. Thus slacklining is born and now enjoyed all over the world. It’s catching on fast and with the momentum it has, is certainly not going to stop. Today my brother and I hung out with slacklining friends of his in Boulder. They set up two lines; a long line and a regular line. While hanging out with them, I was reminded of how fun the sport is and more importantly, what a great community of people it attracts. No wonder it’s taking the world by storm. Anywhere people set up and enjoy it, people stop and stare and even more fun, ask to learn and try it out.
Skiing. It is one of the world’s most popular winter sports. For some, it involves beautiful scenery, exhilarating speed, skill and talent. For others, it represents uncomfortable cold, steep terrain, and risk of bodily harm.
Family. One of the world’s most important relationships. For some, it involves encouraging love, inspiring fun, and a life guiding foundation. For others, it represents hurt, embarrassment, and haunting dis-functionality.
So what do you have when you combine the two? What takes place when you attempt to do one with the other?
This week, I am joining my family on a week-long ski vacation in Breckenridge, Colorado. For an entire seven days we are living together again. This time in a ski-in/ski-out town home. I am extremely grateful and excited for this time with my loved ones. As you can see from that one line, I am one of the people who sees the first description of family. And now that I have invested a few years into learning how to ski, I can say the same about skiing – I am of the first opinion previously noted. Before you get ahead of me though, realize that there are elements of the second opinions of both skiing and family that do exist in my life. Maybe this means that it has a lot to do with perspective: does a person focus on the negative in things or on the positive? And of course the other elements and factors need to be taken into consideration and they do play a powerful role.
Over this next week, I am going to write about what I observe in my own family while we are on our family ski trip. While my writings will be influenced by my own personality traits (which tend to be on the positive and optimistic side), I will do my best to observe and note what occurs when you combine skiing with family. As you follow along, feel free to share about your experiences with skiing and your family. And as much as being objective is valued, let’s make a point to have our biases and perspectives recognized and fully used. If you’re optimistic and idealistic, then read this and then respond with that perspective. If you’re realistic and pessimistic, then read and share through that lens.