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Personal Rationale of Life Events

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Family and human sciences: Personal rationale of life events Mason Hess Salt Lake Community College

Personal Rationale of Life Events

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There are many things that have influence on the life of a person. Where, how, and by whom we are raised plays a pivotal role in our life. Since the day I was born, certain things have been molding me into the man I am today and the man I will one day be, I am exploring the past in order to find out what exactly those pivotal events are, and how they have affected my life. It has been the lives of my mother and father that have motivated and affected me the most however, so I feel it would be misleading to begin anywhere but right at home with them. With both my mother and father being raised with extreme Christian views, my road was almost already set in stone, but life has a funny way of progressing. This was very important to their families, to their family now, and will be important to mine and my sister’s future families as well, all because of the generational faith that was kept. Since being born, my parents have always pushed me in the right direction, praying for and aiding in pretty much any success story that I have. All of the principles about being a “good man,” that my dad taught me, were taught to him also by his father, who, besides my father, is the best man I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. It just goes to show that these generational lessons and morals do have a lasting impact on the lives of our children, as they did on me, even though I was unable to realize that learning these things from my father would be one of the most influential tactics that I learned throughout childhood and adolescence. Whether it was in sports, school, or just about anything, I quickly grew to learn that dad has the answer, and this was a very supportive feature

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that I had access to, whereas many children today do not have someone as readily accessible to help them with whatever they need. I owe much of my personal prosperity and independence to parents who taught and raised me well. Another influential factor of my life has been the many places that I have lived. By no means do I think that you gain intelligence or academic superiority by moving around a lot and learning in many different places, sometimes I feel that it could even have an adverse effect on a child. But a child with resilience, as defined by our text, would take the opportunity and gain, not intelligence, but perspective, which in turn creates a sense of independence and builds selfesteem. I was born in a Northern Illinois town named Peoria, which was famously known for their minor league hockey team up until two years ago when the team moved. My family moved from Peoria before I was old enough to realize what was what so most of my memorable childhood was spent in a town in the southern tip of Illinois called Cairo, which is a small river town where the Ohio River meets the Mississippi River to form what locals call “the point.” Many things happened in this historic old town. I lived in the upstairs apartment of a funeral home on 9th street, run by my father and his associate. I remember being scared many times, as the chapel was right down the stairs from my room where funerals would take place.

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At the funeral home, there was a soda machine in the downstairs lounge, and I knew where the key was. So anytime I wanted/needed a drink, I would just grab the key and twist open the soda machine and grab a few. To this day I am not sure if anyone knew I was taking them or not but that is an act that I think about every time I get a soda from a machine. I remember being caught once by my father. Around midnight, on a school night I might add, I grew more and more thirsty as I played my video games into the night, without my parents knowledge. And as I trekked down to the lounge I heard some strange noises. Not thinking, of course, that my father is a mortician and works at whatever hour of the night that people die, I slowly move down toward the noise coming from the laundry room. And who else but my dad jumps out from behind the embalming room door as a dead body lay on the cold table. This is just one of the many scares that I owe my father for the time I spent in fear. After nine years in Cairo, Illinois, my family moved to the place I now consider to be my hometown, Cape Girardeau, Missouri. Most of the friends that I went through High school and Junior High with are still there. I owe much of my social nature to those friends in cape. My friend Taylor taught me to make the best out of any situation and to this day I still make light of intense circumstances to make things less difficult. Taylor is just one of the many people who had an impact on my life in Cape, but he is like a candle in a dark room. With so much dark always around him, he seems to keep shining brightly no matter what does or doesn’t go his way, and this is something that I learned

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from him. He also taught me how to party, I know, it sounds juvenile, but for me, it was a totally appropriate time of life. After growing up in church, I was just becoming so curious around the age of 15. I started to take more interest in girls, sports, and social events/functions such as parties. I had always wanted the full high school experience and I felt like my parents and their values were holding me back from my life. I began smoking marijuana around the age of 16 but had my mom convinced since the age of 15 that I was just smoking cigarettes, which I do not think she was any more happy about to say the least. For the most part, after I started driving and could get away from my parents, I did. I began making new friends, mostly ones who smoked and drank, which aided in my delinquency. I can, in no form or fashion, accuse any of my peers of peer pressure or blame my choices on anyone else. Everything I have ever done has been because I wanted to and because I was curious and wanted to experience life and all it has had to offer. Needless to say, I feel that most adolescents feel this way at one point or another, and most grow past it, usually growing right into the man or woman that their parents wished they would be while raising them. I found this to be all too true in my own life. After doing my own thing for such a long time, probably until I was about 19, and getting absolutely nowhere, something had to change. I got a job laying floors with a member of my mom’s church, and we went through a few jobs, laying moisture barriers, carpet, and

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tile, while traveling all around to cool cities like Indianapolis, Indiana, Miami, Florida, etc… well, the hotel life on the road can be a lonely business to say the least, and when you’re a thousand miles away from friends and family, it doesn’t help. Then one day, we head for a job in a small town in Illinois called Carmi where we were supposed to help build a church for the owner of some oil drilling company. I thought I was just in line for another job, but someone else had something in mind for me. At the oil drilling company (Les Wilson oil inc.) they held a small worship and prayer meeting every day at lunch time, and my boss and everyone else on our staff, being faithful Christians decided, “why not?” This sure put me in an awkward position, being raised Christian my entire life but being confronted with a decision to make. I chose to attend the small meeting, thinking that I was doing someone besides myself a favor for some reason. And every day, more and more conviction grew inside of me about the things that I was doing in my life and the person that I would become if I chose to continue that life. Every day I heard testimonies and praises of how the lord turned people’s lives around, and I wanted it. I chose to stop smoking marijuana, drinking alcohol, and to stop doing what I knew to be wrong. As I sat at night in a lonely hotel room, I read a Bible that Les Wilson had begun to give away for free and gave my life back to Jesus. Think what you will about Christianity or religion as a whole, however, I know the help I received and I know that I could not be the man that I am today without that help. The

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foundation given to me by my parents, and given to them by theirs, is the greatest thing that has made me who I am, and who I want to be. I progressed with this vision for my life by continuing in church and even attended World Harvest Bible College in Columbus, Ohio for two years, graduating with an associate’s degree in interdisciplinary studies and evangelism. Many people in Columbus influenced me, but the greatest influence of all came from being an R.A., which is a residence advisor, or someone who maintains and supervises the dormitories and dorm residents. Being the R.A. I was put in charge of weekly devotionals, which we called “devo.” Devo’s are a time when we would all come together, pray, worship, talk, or I would give a simple lesson that was pertinent to what we were being taught or what was going on in the world. The position really gave me something to be proud of myself about, the fact that the elders of the college and church saw something in me to appoint me to any position of leadership meant a great deal to me. Though most of my life’s “major” pivotal events took place in, or because of church, or God, there is a great deal of integrity, teamwork and gamesmanship that I owe to sports, as well as those who have coached me over the years. I believe it to be extremely important for those who coach/mentor kids, even of high school age, to be honorable, honest, reliable, available, as well as kind, but stern. This seems like a lot to ask of a part-time

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physical education teacher and/or high school or junior high football coach, but these people are teaching our kids! A man from my church, who was also my baseball coach in high school and my eighth grade football coach, named coach Kitchen is the perfect example of such a human. The incredible coach has raised two sons to be coaches, one of who I played football with, and he has even inspired me to be a coach. I want to have the same impact that he had on me and I want the kids that I coach to feel the same tingles up and down their spine when I talk. I want to be able to see the change taking place in kid’s lives and the way they use the football field to express themselves instead of taking out their anger/wrath in other ways that may adversely affect themselves or their peers. I just want to make a difference, like coach made in my life.

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WORKS CITED Stassen-Berger, K. Fister, B. “Invitation to the Lifespan.” Macmillan Higher Education, 2012.