I was born and raised in Gunnison, Colorado and attended the University of Denver. The mountains have become a permanent fixture in my concept of natural beauty, and the laid-back, loving nature of Coloradans has become commonplace. I am a true Colorado native, yet I have never felt more connected to the state than I do right now. As I consider my future plans, I decided to begin by looking outside Colorado’s borders. The opportunity to leave the state forced me to look inward, and I began to realize how desperately committed to the state of Colorado I am.
Upon reflection, I am struck by the diversity of the Centennial state. I grew up in arguably the coldest town in the nation, where only the tough survive. I spent my days climbing mountains, and proudly sporting my Gunnison Cowboys jersey. In stark contrast, my undergraduate years were spent in Denver, where I was surrounded by culture and the urban glamour of Wash Park. Colorado Springs has brought an onslaught of new experiences and reasons to love the state. The interplay between urban and natural landscape is unbelievable, and this city provides an opportunity for me, as a young person, to have a voice and create change. The common thread between these three vastly different cities is the quality of the people.
I have come to realize that relationships are what make a place worth fighting for. My intense love for Colorado, and Colorado Springs specifically can be almost solely attributed to the people I am surrounded by. The life I have built here is dynamic, challenging and supportive. A life that is not extravagant by any means, but quite simple really. The people I have met, worked with, lived with and laughed with have helped me find new adventures every day, a love for my state, and life in general.
Life moves quickly, with obstacles, curve balls and unexpected joys and sorrows around every corner. We cannot dictate our exact path, nor can we hit a pause, slow motion or fast forward button at our leisure. What we can do is embrace those who bring color to our lives, celebrate the beauty around us, and strive to be a little bit better each and every day. There is no better place to embrace life than the state of Colorado with my fellow Coloradans. I realize I don’t need to leave to find my next adventure, I find I’ve already invested in a future here, and so rather than pulling up roots I plan to dig them in a little deeper right here.