I look around me and see struggle, failure, growth, success, and that culture we’ve all been fighting to keep. I look around me, and question dedication, efficiency, loyalty, and that character we’ve all been trying to build. It has been quite a year for this little group. From just a few to barely fitting the office, I can’t help but realize the importance of looking back.
Having no inkling of where all of this was going, I just went with it like everybody else did. We were all trying to figure things out. We were all confused, tired, and lost. Nobody knew the outcome, but faith had us going and giving. Sometimes, failures get the better of us and we fall into the trap of entitlement. Sometimes, people misunderstand and pour insane amounts of pressure at us. Sometimes, our good isn’t good enough.
But those times make the great even greater. Those times turn individuals into groups, and those groups turn into a team, and that team is right in front of me. This year was everything I did and didn’t ask for. We go through life thinking maybe tomorrow we’ll finally understand, but we never really do. Which is why I’m writing this at this moment. Because I don’t understand. And it’s such a beautiful thing.
I don’t understand why these people have been so patient. I don’t understand why they have been so determined and passionate. I don’t understand why they readily sacrifice so much. And maybe I have a bit of an idea why, but it’s never completely pieced together.
What I do know is this unfamiliar feeling inside me, bursting with gratitude and fear. I am so thankful for sitting here in this very office, at this time. I am so thankful to be surrounded with people who aren’t perfect, or pretending to be perfect. I am so thankful for the struggle, and pain. But, I am also scared. I fear a lot for myself and the future. I fear for everyone and the path we’re paving. But to be feeling this much fear probably means we’re doing something good.
I always tell people, who enter this office to hit the ground running, to hit the gas pedal hard enough to catch the pace. I always try to find a workaround in the hopes that things fall into place. It’s never going to slow down. There will never be a button to stop the madness. Chances are, that button has already become obsolete. But like everything else we don’t understand, we take that leap with no clear view of the other side. We take a leap of faith, and hope against hope that the journey will be just as crazy and beautiful.
Above is a photo of the Elevation Partners team, a company in which Paola Malong is a part of.