As the morning dew sets on the grass at Schnebly’s Winery, grunts and groans echo throughout the area. Fast paced music swirls in the air tempting bodies to move with the rhythm. The animals that awake early have already been put through a series of grueling exercises that have pushed their bodies to the limit.
Peering out into the grassy field that holds excess parking, the only thing the eye can see is three long rows of large coral rock boulders. It is too early for any cars to be parking at the facility. It is too early for any workers to be arriving for their daily shift. The field is empty.
But wait! What is that in the distance on the boulders? Is it a herd of galloping gazelles flowing across the rows of boulders? As you look closer, you soon realize that there are a few graceful gazelles in the herd and then you notice the exhausted elephant lumbering behind.
The gazelles streak from boulder to boulder imitating the wind. The elephant stands and watches. She considers the distance between the boulders. Some are closer together. Some are higher than the others. The elephant has no faith that she can jump with her huge legs from one boulder to the other so she steps down between the boulders. She is so discouraged but does not want to fail. She climbs up again and stands at the edge of a boulder. She thinks about taking a running start and leaping over the boulders but fear creeps into her mind and scares her. She really wants to complete the task by jumping from boulder to boulder but she is mentally and emotionally held back. What if she falls? She could injure herself on the jagged edges of the coral rock boulders. She could miss the boulder and break her leg. Injury and failure are what scare her the most.
Finally the exhausted elephant decides that she has got to go for it or quit. Standing at one edge of the boulder, she swings her arms to get a rhythm. One, two, three and she takes a running jump and lands safely on the next boulder. The elephant’s trunk is raised and a loud trumpet of victory is sounded. Again she lines up and gets a rhythm going and leaps to the next boulder. Slowly picking up speed, the elephant becomes more confident with each jump. There are a few boulders in between that she just feels are too far apart so she climbs down and back up but continues to jump over all the other gaps between boulders. The elephant feels like she is on the way to becoming a graceful gazelle. Her mind wraps around the idea that she completed the task and she is proud.
She did it! The elephant did it! She actually convinced herself that it was possible and with the encouragement of her trainer, she completed the task at hand.
Yes, this recruit was the lumbering elephant who once again took on a new challenge that she just could never picture herself accomplishing. This recruit climbed to the top of bar stools and walked across them. This recruit jumped rope. This recruit did frog jumps. This recruit does push-ups. This recruit jumped rows of boulders. This recruit overcame her fear of the situation and took on the challenge of her trainer.
I am a recruit in Warriors of Wine and this lumbering elephant is on her way to becoming a galloping gazelle! What’s next?