It’s the little things: how changing my perspective has made me happier

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Bradey Resulta, Writer

You can study all night long and memorize as many flashcards as you’d like. However, some of our biggest learning opportunities happen outside the classroom.  

When I was a sophomore at Marian University, I applied to the Boys and Girls Club of Fond du Lac because it seemed like the best option in terms of compatible hours while being a full-time student. I thought, “This is a great, temporary job. I will get in and get out. It will be easy.” 

But over the years, this has evolved into so much more. I’ve created connections all over the city through our programming, and I’ve been able to impact the children that I work with in the best ways that I can. My family and friends believe that I am a glorified babysitter and fail to recognize the amount of effort this organization puts into the Fond du Lac community. Our dedication is constantly put to the test, and the outbreak of COVID-19 is a prime example. 

On March 17, 2020, the Boys and Girls Club of Fond du Lac closed its doors on the afterschool program to ensure the safety and health of the community. Immediately, we understood the implications of what we needed to do next. A lot of our members relied on their respective schools and the Club’s afterschool program for meals and food security. So, on March 18, 2020, we started serving curbside breakfasts and lunches at three separate sites for all school-aged youth in the Fond du Lac school district 

When Governor Tony Evers ordered the Safer At Home Act on March 23, 2020, the administrative team and directors of the Boys and Girls Club of Fond du Lac decided that it was best if they practiced social distancing and worked from home. The problem at hand was: Who was going to serve the meals? We were informed that if we did not want to continue serving meals, we did not have to. It became optional. 

I chose to continue working in food distribution because serving the community is what this job really is about. It’s more than babysitting kids every day. I realized early on that working with kids every day has a greater impact on communities than what is usually appreciated or recognized. 

During the first week of food distribution, it felt as if I wasn’t doing enough. I was used to working directly with members of the community and implementing programs that ensured their safety and growth. Handing out food from the back of a van was not the way I imagined myself giving back to them.  

My perspective quickly changed when families and other community members thanked us for the work we were doing. The sort of gratitude that we receive, on a daily basis, is genuine and from the hearts of those we are serving. I’ve come across teary-eyed mothers explaining how they lost their jobs, and children who are excited for their turkey-and-cheese sandwich 

To date, our three sites have served over 7,000 mealsWe are not the only ones contributing to those in need, though. We have received donations from various members in the community that range from boxes of string cheese to Dairy Queen coupons (which is open, drive-thru only). 

The purpose of this article isn’t because I want recognition for the work that I do. This article is for anyone that doesn’t think they can make a differenceEspecially in a time like this, when we have no choice but to do, what we feel like, is next to nothing… Every good thing that we do in our life, is destined to be a part of something bigger.  

So, I encourage you to change your perspective. Embrace the adversities and tackle the hardships, and then have the courage to believe that it is all worth it. Know that who you are, and what you do, is going leave a mark on someone or something. You have a place in the world, so take advantage of it and be the best that you can be. Because at the end of the day, you matter. It’s as simple as that.