Growing up, I never saw myself as having an ordinary childhood. I was a military brat, over-involved in every sport, play, recital- any activity that you could name. Let’s just say I was an active kid. In the 6th grade, I went on a class trip to see Colours Performing Arts Troupe. I fell in love with the idea of performing on stage and joined the troupe the following year.
100 shows a year, up and down the east coast, I traveled and performed for thousands of people. At that age, I thought I was a healthy little sun raisin. I not only rehearsed 4 hours a night, 6 days a week, for 5 years, I was a ball of energy. The downside was that I never had time to sit down and eat a nutritious meal with my family. My dad was an active member of the military, my sister attended private school across town, I was always in rehearsal or performing, and my mom, well she was the core, keeping my family together through everything. Due to everyone’s busy schedules, I thought it was normal for families to eat separately. Sad to say, I didn’t realize how important it was to take time out of your busy schedule to spend time with your family until college! Yes, I said college.
I arrived at Bucknell University eager to step into my next phase of life. I was finally claiming my freedom as a young adolescent! As I tried to quickly adjust to the campus community, I found myself isolated from the rest of my fellow Bucknellians. Every day at 6pm, groups of students walked together to the cafeteria to eat dinner. At first, I just could not understand the concept of people finding time to eat together. I would usually grab a meal on the go and head back to my studies. After awhile, I began to feel lonely, realizing I was missing an important part of college life. That was when I fully understood that a fundamental part of one’s day is to make time for the people you love. It’s as simple as sitting down and eating a meal together. The conversations and moments you share over a meal are priceless. Every day, people put their work and other activities before taking time out for themselves and their family. Whether it’s rehearsing for a show or late nights at work, finding a balance in your life is crucial.
Today, I make a conscious effort to find a median between my passion for the performing arts, work, and eating a meal with the people I love. It’s a constant learning process, but I honestly feel better and more balanced in my life.
How has taking time out to eat a meal with your family or friends impacted your lifestyle?