Campaign: reSolve 2012

This is going to be a bit of a different post, so please bear with me …

As I sat pondering what goals I might make for this New Year, my husband shared a rather depressing article in the Huffington Post.  It highlighted America’s political and economic woes and the sense of despair that has settled on the country.

It was full of quotes from average Americans, like this: “I’m just waiting for China or somebody to take us over,” says Becky Jamison, 36. “Because we’re just falling apart.”

And: “What’s different from this and the Great Depression is that the moral fiber has changed,” says Russ Terry. “The reason we can’t handle this is we don’t have the moral backbone, the stick-to-it-tiveness… The government is just a reflection of the people, is it not?”

These are sentiments I can relate to; sentiments I have shared.  How can we place hope in a future that seems to get darker with every breaking news story? From politics, to the economy, to moral decay, our prospects feel unrelentingly bleak.

The article continues: “Republicans or Democrats, liberal or conservative, young or old, they lack confidence – in the country’s potential to be great again, in their elected leaders’ ability to do the right thing, in the economy and in themselves.  It’s not that they feel incapable of doing what needs to be done, as much as they are uncertain about what that right thing is and whether anything they can do will have any real impact.

Another feeling I’ve shared. I’m guessing there are many who feel as I do; that we would be happy to sacrifice if we could feel confident that it would be of benefit.

Our country needs help and yet we feel helpless.

I was just telling my mom a few weeks ago, that I don’t see any hope for our country because our “moral backbone,” which is all but gone, was lost over a few short generations, in the most fundamental unit of society; the home.

The home: our own small, but immensely powerful sphere of influence, where learned behaviors are instilled for life. But in our selfish American homes we’ve become lazy and selfish… unwilling to teach our children the skills that create a strong, competent society. Skills like integrity, hard work, perseverance, dedication, generosity.  Instead we value that which comes fast and easy and feels good.  We are plagued with a sense of entitlement–  Believing we deserve to be given, not that we struggle to earn.

After a few generations of fostering such behaviors, where else could we expect to be?

And then we complain. We blame.  We expect some collective program or service to fix problems that were created on the individual level.  We look to government or others to solve what has become a massive problem, with some massive, work-for-everyone solution.

We can’t keep hoping for some big band-aid to come cover our problems.  If we truly want to make an impact I think we need to realize that our most important work won’t be world-wide,  It will be back to that neglected unit where we first lost our footing… 

Look around you.  Find your home sphere of influence.  “Lift where you stand.” 

This New Year I’ve resolved to not lose hope.  I simply can’t… I’ve already invested too much into the future, because I have this little peanut on the way.  I have to believe there is good ahead of us.

My resolution is that I will not model laziness, entitlement, intolerance, abuse… but rather, integrity and hard work.  I will open my eyes to the small, unnoticed services that I can perform for those in need.  I will be generous and kind.

I will keep my chin up, my head high, and a smile on my face for the future that I know I will not collectively impact, but individually build.

To show my determination I’ve created my own campaign for 2012: Campaign: reSolve.

Because running is one of my greatest loves in life and something I immensely believe in, I thought it would be a good medium to work through as I challenge myself to impact my own sphere of influence.

Running takes hard work, determination, and heart, and I believe that I improve both myself, and those that I come into contact with through running. As I continue to run, and foster other healthy lifestyle choices, I know I can be an essential positive influence in my baby-on-the-way’s life.

So, for Campaign: reSolve 2012, I will try to find one race to run (or walk, as I become more pregnant) every week for the rest of my pregnancy.  In addition, I will match the entry fee for each race and donate it charitably.

Feel free to join me and modify/use this idea for your own campaign: reSolve 2012.  I encourage you to find some way to lift where you stand and make an impact right where you are. It doesn’t have to have anything to do with money.  It’s about doing something.

Will we change the world?  Um… probably not, but we’ll be changing ourselves and building those around us… and that’s how it starts.

Here is a list of my upcoming races (so far, feel free to add suggestions!)  If you live in the area, I’d love to see you there!

You can follow me on my campaign here on the blog or from this facebook fan page.

Get ready to see a lot more of the Baby on Board shirt!

Because I’m grateful for all that I’ve been blessed with, I’m grateful for this country, I’m grateful for the future, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to improve the future. And so I’m resolved to give all I can, in my small way, to build a bright one!

46 thoughts on “Campaign: reSolve 2012

  1. Wow – I agree 1000000% and I am in love with this idea!! I can’t race until March, but I’ll definitely do the race fee matching for that one road race that I’m allowed to run! Your resolution is something we ALL should be tackling, no matter what time of the year. Thank you for bringing this up and coming up with a really fun way to create change!

    • Thanks, Tara! I can’t wait until you get racing in March, because I love reading your race reviews… I always feel like I learn something I can use in my own racing. :)

  2. I love this Jess! When we dedicated our children we made a promise to provide them with a strong moral base, to guide them, to teach them to work hard and to provide them with a sense of community. It does start in the home and with a lack of guidance comes a new generation of people that want want want but will not “do.” It’s sad and it’s up to us change it. Thank you for this! Heading to check out your race schedule mama!

    • That’s exactly what I want to do, Nicole! You guys are outstanding parents… I knew when I wrote this that I’d be preaching to the choir. (but then I guess the choir are the people who need to keep singing and hoping that others will join in.)

      If you have any good so cal race suggestions… I’d love to hear them!

  3. Jess! Loved this post. I’ve never really, or entirely shared any of my thoughts or beliefs on my blog b/c I just didn’t want to open the door of debate = argument. lol but this is exactly how I feel and I think it should be how everyone else feels and thinks too.

    What really hit home for me was the BLAME. everyone always wants to try to fix others, things; the exterior when really the only thing we have the power to change is ourselves. It’s very humbling when you see things that way and when you begin to work on personal growth and development, those around you change. They are forced to change or leave b/c you are no longer the same :)

    I am so proud that you are going to match all your race fees! WOW!!!!!!

    something inside of me really wants to be able to go on a mission trip this year. So I think I may :) I really want to rid myself of my sense of entitlement. I want to be able to see first hand what it’s like to have nothing.

    My resolution this year will be another personal growth change – I am trying to stop swearing. I don’t want Logan to grow up saying the f-word all the time like me. I know it’s going to be difficult as it’s ingrained in me, but if I keep at it….I know I can do it :D

    Love you and peanut! xo

    • That would be awesome, Ali! I think the mission trip sounds so cool! I’d love to hear more about that, how it works, and how it goes. That would be such a neat experience.

      And what a great resolution for Logan. I have been trying to clean up my language also (not cuss words, necessarily, just things I really don’t want my baby to be repeating as a 1 year old.) It’s not easy. But I totally agree with you that we can do it and it will be worth it.

      Thanks for supporting me on this, bf… I totally agree, it’s the blame and if we can just start looking around us and doing what we can, we’ll start moving the mountain and making a difference! :)

  4. I loved this blog. A friend was saying yesterday how her family’s motto is, “We can do hard things.” I agree that the biggest change will come from the return of families instilling values in their children. My neighboring town has monthly values that are both posted in the community (with definitions) and taught in the schools. Each month children write essays on the value and the top ones are awarded with the children’s pictures in the paper. It is a great reinforcement for those already teaching the values at home.

    • I LOVE that family motto… my mom used to say that to us, too! And holy cow, what a cool thing for a town to do. I bet that not only helps the kids to learn the values, but also helps to inspire the parents to be diligent in their teaching of those values. So that it is being reinforced all around.

      Which is a great point… the values do need to be taught at home, but it’s also super important that they’re reinforced outside of the home, which is why it’s important for us to look around and lift and be a good example regardless of whether we have our own families or not. Thanks, Gina!! :)

  5. Heartfelt post and one that resonates worldwide I think.

    I will be joining you in reSolve, I have a few thoughts and will pen them to my keyboard shortly. It would be great if this little ripple could grow into a tidal wave of hope and happiness xx

    a growing peanut = lots of faith and positive action.

    • Thanks, Lara! It’s true the peanut is pretty inspiring… how could something so precious and new not be motivating?! :) Thanks for your comments and good luck in your reSolve!!!

  6. Well, I just love this post. The only way to bring about change is by doing something. Teaching my children is how I can do that these days. Having children (and growing them!) is such an eye-opener. I sometimes feel like there is not enough time in the day to help them learn all of the important things/values they need to know. I CAN be an example to them and show them right from wrong and I have to be the one to do this. Sadly, there are a lot of children out there who don’t have someone doing that for them. I could go on about that for quite a while :) .
    I love your idea to match entry fees. Someday I would love to do this.

    • It’s so true… We do have to be the ones who do something about this… most importantly for our own kids. I hope that once I’m done with the growing stage and onto all those other crazy, yet wonderful stages, I can remember this, just like you obviously do! Thanks for your comment, Jerilee!

  7. You and Cecily are perfect examples why we all should do all we can to make the world a better place. No one lives trouble free, but what we each do with our problems is what makes a difference in who we are and what we eventually become. My life didn’t really go the way I planned it when I was 25 but at 57 I am pretty darn happy with tevwy things turned out. I have 5 of the best peanuts to ever live on earth. I’m so proud of my children & this post is just further evidence of how well you all turned out!

    • Haha! Aren’t peanuts just the best!!! I think this one has just about stolen my whole heart! You’re sure a great dade! It’s a tribute to good parenting to have kids like my awesome brothers and sisters!

  8. I realized that my comment seems to imply that I am always a shining example to my children ;) . So not the case- but I try my best.
    Your little one is lucky- you seem way more aware and prepared than I was with my first (or now, even!)

    • Haha… I’ve read your blog… you can’t fool me, you seem like a pretty great mom! (Though I imagine we can’t be perfect 100% of the time… you probably have 99% nailed down… :) )

      Seriously, It’s moms like you and some of the other awesome blogger ladies that are my inspiration!

  9. Congrats Jess! You are an inspiration and will be such a great mama! I am so not a runner. However I agree with you about the idea of starting with the home if we want to fix our future. That is why I believe so strongly in MOPS. If you haven’t heard about it check it out. The MOPS international motto is “Better Moms make a better World” I have joined the leadership team with my local group and hope to change the lives of other moms here in vv. hope you are well. I am always awed by women who run with a baby on board. You rock my world! Keep it up and Happy Running!

    • Thanks, Jamie!!! I will definitely look into MOPS! Way to go with your work on it there in Vacaville. I’ll be in town again in about a month… maybe we can get together then for a lunch or something and you can tell me more about it?! That would be awesome and so fun to see you! Thanks again for your comment… YOU rock my world! :)

  10. Wow! When you decide to do something you do it big! Way to go! I agree! There is a general feeling of wanting to make choices without the consequences. We want to do whatever we want, and only have good things happen to us. And then when it doesn’t work like that we blame others.

    You rock so much! And if any of those races happen to be in Washington (or you tell me what week you want to be in western Washington and I’ll find us a race) you have a place to stay!

    • Haha… yeah, I can be a little ridiculous sometimes… :) But I’m thinking this will be a blast! I totally want some of those races to be in Washington… I was checking out Terra’s race schedule and thinking I might try and do one of those 5k’s… are there any good races you’re planning on doing?

      • Well, she pretty much copied my race schedule, so you can probably pick a race off her schedule (with a few exceptions) and count on me being there. You should come up for one of the cross country races in the fall though. You’d love them (and kick my trash, but whatever).

        • Oh I don’t know about that… by the time we hit fall and cross country meets, you’ll probably be sub 19 (!!!) and I’ll still be hoping to get back into after-baby shape! :)

  11. I totally agree with everything you wrote here! I must say that it seems like it truly does start in the home… but I have a feeling you won’t have too much of a problem ;) You’re going to be a great mom, especially since you recognize the changes that need to happen and that the home is a “powerful sphere of influence.” Seriously, you rock- this was an awesome post.

    Campaign ReSolve sounds amazing. I’ll definitely be following along.

  12. You are just seriously amazing! Wow I needed this so bad today and am so thankful to you for sharing. Thank you for putting yourself out there and sharing your perspective. I am totally with you. I resolve to not let the negativity of the world get the best of me and to continue to do whatever I can to better the world.

    I freaking love you and that shirt rocks!!

    • That is a perfect resolve… not to let the negativity of the world bring us down! You are one of my biggest inspirations (I know I tell you this all the time…), so thank YOU for positively influencing my life! :)

  13. I LOVE love love this. I’m going to think about what I’m going to do today! (I’ll post about it tonight :) ) The choices we make today might not ever affect us, but they will affect feature generations. For instance your lil baby peanut!

    • Looking forward to that post, Hannah! It’s so true… we’ve got so many others to think about, especially those precious future generations! :)

  14. Lemmon!!!!! I’m sorry but you will always be Lemmon to me. So you have me thinking now that I want start doing some 5k’s. I probably should start by running since I don’t EVER run. EVER!!! I usually just do group exercise classes. You have inspired me to try something different and to push myself. I totally 100% agree with your post, by the way. I don’t want my future posterity growing up thinking they are entitled to what the government has to offer. Seeing what’s going on right now just makes me sick to my stomach. One of my goals last year was to not gripe about politics on facebook and I did pretty well after June :) There were times I wanted to yell on facebook about politics but I refrained. Thanks for sharing. You inspire me to do better and be a better me. Love you!!

    • (Oh, I’ll always be lemmon… haha :) You should totally do some running and 5ks… In fact, maybe we could do one together in a few months!! That would be so awesome… are you still in Utah? We should start looking for a good one to do. Great job on not griping on facebook… with how things are going it can definitely be tempting, but the best thing we can do is work to be a positive influence. You’re so great, Henwood! I miss your face! :)

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  16. Awesome post! And I’ll let you in on a little secret (because I’m not good at secrets), if all goes well I may be wanting one of your rockin’ Baby on Board shirts by the end of 2012. ;)

    • AHHHHH!!!! YEA!!!!! I’m so excited for you! I’m terrible at keeping my own secrets, too… especially awesome ones like this! You just let me know and we’ll get you that Baby on Board shirt!! :)

  17. Jess – beautiful post and a WONDERFUL resolution. I love this line you wrote: Find your home sphere of influence. “Lift where you stand.”

    Keep being a shining example to those around you! I’ll be cheering you on with every race :)

  18. Well said Jess, and I agree. I can’t wait to figure out my own race schedule and reSolve 2012 plan! As far as resolutions go, this is the best idea I’ve seen!

    • I think when you come to stay before the baby is born, we should try and do a race together… of course, I’ll most likely be walking, but you could finish and then jog back and walk with me? :)

  19. Agree, agree, agree! 150%. This country will get better through HARD WORK. Not hand outs. Everything starts in the home. As a preschool teacher I am astonished at how home life really is reflected everywhere.

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  24. I absolutely love this! I think this may be one of the best ideas I’ve seen a runner blogger come up with yet. You are going to be a wonderful mommy! I’m grateful to call you my friend and if you want to race in Huntsville, AL, I won’t even make you sleep on the couch. You can stay in one of the guest rooms!

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