Mt Pleasant News
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Neighbors Growing Together | Dec 8, 2016

Debating the benefits of change

By Brooks Taylor

By BROOKS TAYLOR

Mt. Pleasant News

Change is good, it is said.

Perhaps, but many times it depends on the change referenced.

Nearly 30 months ago, I made a big change, moving away from what had been home for 11 years to new pastures.

The pastures weren’t exactly new as I had spent 12 years previously in southeast Iowa, just 30 miles to the north of Mt. Pleasant.

A fresh start was what I needed, friends urged me. They had a point. I had faced some unfortunate situations during the last several years in northwest Iowa.

So with optimism, I migrated back to southeast Iowa.

I’ve had some time to think about change and some factors have had me expend perhaps too much gray matter on the change.

Change took me away from a daughter who was just beginning high school and another who was going off to college. Sacrifices, I knew, would have to be made.

But those sacrifices were put on the back burner initially. I liked Mt. Pleasant as a community and positive change drowned out any and all apprehension.

Now that daughter I left behind in high school is making her mark in sports. She ran at the state track meet last spring and is a starter on the basketball team this year after having earned a starting spot midway through her sophomore campaign.

A few weeks ago, I realized I was missing her high school years. It was not a particular pleasing thought.

It took me back to all those nights I spent in gyms coaching and watching my other two daughters play. I also remembered the nights we would go to the gym (I had a key to the gym) and work on their games.

It was through those year-around sessions that my daughters really improved. We worked on all aspects of the game, emphasizing the fundamentals when they were younger and progressing to the finer points. Both were offered numerous college scholarships.

I feel badly that I can’t do the same for my youngest daughter. While we began the workouts during her two years in middle school, they stopped when I moved. I know I could help her game but 600 mile round trips just won’t work.

It’s more than basketball, though, it’s much more. I don’t get to see her on prom night, watch her cheering from the stands during fall football games, run track or share in any of her thrills and disappointments.

Through life, happiness must be balanced with disappointment. Before coming to Mt. Pleasant, I put 15,000-20,000 miles on my vehicle. This past year, I drove just over 5,000 miles, well over half of that total was work-related.

Why the difference?

Nearly everything I need I can purchase here. I used to drive 40 miles to buy a pair of trousers or shoes. Now, I don’t have to leave town

I haven’t done the math, but I would imagine 10,000-15,000 miles a year is quite a savings with gas prices hovering between $3.00-$3.50 a gallon, not to mention the other wear and tear on a vehicle.

So, is change good? Maybe…maybe not.