There’s no doubt in my mind that my father would have been a world champion calf roper if he had chosen to make a career in rodeo. I have a picture of him from the National Finals Rodeo in Dallas where he was getting off on the right side and holding his slack. Obviously he was way ahead of his time. The most rodeos he made in any one year was thirty-eight, and that’s back when most people went to all they could get to.
There were two things that kept him from being all that he could be as a roper or from winning world titles.
First, he never spent any amount of money for a horse and always made his own. There’s nothing wrong with that and I respect him for that.
Secondly, he had a family with five kids and did not want to leave us. He always had one or two jobs at home and just went to a few rodeos. He stayed home for his family. My dad has no regrets what-so-ever and knows he made the right choice. As one of his five kids, I know I’m grateful. Having my dad there while I was growing up and learning had a huge impact on the man and roper I am today.
Knowing this, I’ve taken those two things on in my own life as giants to slay. I focus on those two things and will do whatever it takes. I’ll never let money keep me from buying the right horse, even if I have to borrow it.
As for the other, I don’t want to be away from my family anymore than my father did. To be the husband and father I want to be, I need to have my family with me. As much as I love what I do, it will never be as important or deprive me of my family. Therefore, we travel in a ‘Toter Home’ which is basically like a NASCAR tour bus with living quarters.
To excel at anything requires sacrifice of some kind. In the last year, by working with a trainer, I’ve radically improved my strength and agility. None of which came without sacrifice. Whether it’s giving up some of my favorite food or the hundred plus sit-ups I do every day, it’s worth it for the improvement it’s made in me and my roping.
In the end, I won’t define my career by world titles, NFR qualifications, or money won. I will judge myself by asking if I did everything possible to be the very best I could be. To really evaluate my career, everything has to be taken in perspective including the adversities, wins, and losses. That’s what I use to evaluate myself and not by comparing myself to others. I will have to know, without a doubt that I left nothing to chance and no stone unturned.
If you have giants you need to slay, go after them with whatever you have. Even if it’s only a slingshot.
See you down the line and God bless.MORE >>