By: Richard Edwards, Mountaineer News Contributor Posted: February 28, 2020 | 08:50PM EST
There comes a time in every persons life that a decision has to be made. Be it from what to do after High School, or marriage to that one person that love has affected you, and what to do if you have your own offspring? Those decisions effect your life in so many different and exclusive ways. All of which give each of us experience and justification on how we proceed in life. Be it for good or bad. Each is a decision we make at that moment hoping to change our reality, and small world in a hopefully and positive way. We ultimately have to revert back to our experiences and indeed upbringing to base those decisions upon. Some of us have had exposure to different and a variety of experiences in life. Be it with different lifestyles, cultures, and/or experiences. Perhaps those that have experienced the opportunity to serve in our armed forces, or traveled, or careers, luckily to have gained such exposures and experiences. On the other hand, there are those that have not had such opportunity. That have lived in their particular city, county, area, or region since birth. Perhaps have not had the opportunity to experience the exposure to garner the need or benefits of such outside influences.
But we as individuals have no reason to judge or ignore, or even perhaps base hatred upon. Things we have not either educated ourselves on, or perhaps experienced. I indeed have done many of the things previously expressed. I have indeed judged harshly and dismissed certain criteria I felt negativity about. But what comes naturally after maturity and experience, is the ability to understand and attempt comprehension of why things are what they are.
As a parent of three lovely daughters, I learned patience and objectivity. Patience to understand that I as a parent have the obligation to raise them as good people and responsible humans. What they do with their lives after they reach adulthood, is what I hope they base their behavior upon. They also taught me to comprehend that life is forever rotating and becoming different than what I had experienced. That I as a parent and adult need to change and adapt to social advances.
One of the reasons we moved to Buckhannon was to escape the increasing risks and violence from a very large community. Primarily for my children's safety and well being. But I have also learned that it was God's will we do so. Because it brought forward a peace of mind knowing that my family was indeed in a familial, and protective community and culture. That is indeed what has made WV such a wonderful place to live for over 150 yrs.
When I decided to become more actively involved in our community through volunteering. First as PTO President at BUIS, Upshur Parks Brd, Stockert, UC soccer, Planning Commission, just to name a few. It began as a means for example to my kids that involvement in your community is important. To stand up and represent what you may feel are important issues that could be resolved in a civil and organized way.
What I did not realize was how important that was for me as well. To work with so many like minded individuals that wanted to work and participate in their community. We did not all agree about all subjects. Be we did agree to resolve them in a civil and organized way. We all are wanting to achieve the same goal. That being for the betterment of that organization at the moment, and for the future.
I ran and served as the City Recorder for the sole purpose to explore the means by which we can advance our community for the future. I served as a voice for those that felt theirs was not heard. I realized that the City and County could do better to resolve and enhance our community. I also recognized that our community was not alone. That Elkins and Weston were experiencing such needs. I garnered a team effort with those cities, and our county to forward a sense of teamwork and cooperation to achieve future goals for the current generation and those to come.
It is time now for our City to acknowledge that with future developments like Corridor H, workforce development, mental health, substance abuse need to be addressed now. That if we as citizens desire better housing, increased families, more jobs, and less migration from here. We need to step up in our decisions for leadership. Diversity, opportunity, technology, jobs, and growth come from what decisions are made now. It's time to realize, the time has come. Do we continue to have a population that seniors are the majority, or encourage the youth to become a resident and participant in?
So I ask you my fellow friends and citizens. Where do you belong in this continuing and ongoing reality of our community? Do you stay un-involved, apathetic, ignorant, or un-desirious to the future? Or do you get out and express, involve, volunteer, vote and become more involved in what our community could/should improve? That is indeed what we must ask ourselves as citizens. There is not right or wrong answer. It is more a matter of action. One main action is to become registered voters and actually vote. That is indeed your voice.