by Caleb Peter

One morning you’ll look out the window to see a white blanket of snow covering the world. The once rich fields of corn and beans have been harvested. The leaves have turned orange and have fallen on all lawns everywhere. When you step outside, a wave of cold air hits your face. It’s fall, the time for pumpkins and turkeys.

Before we know it, Christmas advertisements will play in the middle of November. The season of winter is loved for the family gatherings, hot chocolate and warm feelings. I like winter for different reasons. Winter is when wrestling and jazz band start.

Every Tuesday and Friday, I wake up at six in the morning to play the trumpet. I learn and improve every day of practice. The first few days of practice are rough. We are challenged with new songs and rhythms that sound weak at first, but by the first concert, we know what we are doing, and it sounds great. It’s very satisfying to see the crowd applaud for you and your jazz pals.

Wrestling is the most rewarding sport I’ve done. It is also the most time-consuming sport. It starts in Nov. and ends in Feb. Practice starts at 3:30 p.m. and lasts until 5:30 or 6 p.m. Mark the Saturdays off your calendar if you’re in wrestling, because you’ll be going to tournaments that start early in the morning and end in the evening. Also, take note of the occasional morning practice, which consists of sprinting in the empty hallways of the high school.

I don’t consider myself a great wrestler, but I take pride in being a part of the team. I don’t know if I’ll be on varsity this year, but I am not worried about it. As long as I give it my best, that’s what I care about. Putting the effort in practice is what I care about. It feels so refreshing to push my body as hard as I can go. There’s something about working as hard as I can in the wrestling room that clears my mind of stress.

I love doing jazz band and wrestling because they are not easy, and they make me push myself. The rewards come after the effort. Jazz band is worth it because the music you make sounds better every practice. Wrestling is worth it because the work that you put in is great for your physical and mental health. I’ve never regretted doing wrestling when it’s over.

These activities other students and I do does take a large amount of our free time. It can be stressful at times. You have to practice hard to make it work correctly. Getting committed to an activity, sport or hobby is very challenging, time-consuming and rough, but I think the positives outweigh the negatives.

So consider this column a challenge for you: Go use your time today to practice on anything you like. Work hard and create something new. Make yourself better in any way.