Perspective is a beautiful thing

Melissa Hart

Sitting in a motel room in Princeton, West Virginia is not where I expected to be this week after a long two months of being on the road covering shows but here I am looking out the window at beautiful mountains in full color.

My daughter was headed to cover the South Carolina State Fair when she called with her car broken down on the side of the highway at 8 p.m. on a Friday night. We got the car safely towed to a shop, but we had to get her and her assistant headed to Columbia, South Carolina. Because her assistant was also a Virginia Tech graduate, Wytheville, Virginia was a friendly place to be stranded. Several phone calls later and helpful texts from the exhibitors in Columbia, South Carolina, the two girls were on their way in a borrowed car from Virginia Tech Dairy Judging Team Coach, Dr. Katharine Knowlton. 

Thankful for a generous judging coach who has made a career of teaching and loving the next generation of our ag leaders I was elated when I heard the show was being covered without missing a beat and it was a simple fix for the car. Two days later they picked up the car in Virginia and were headed home. Feeling as if I should call them to find out how they were doing, my phone started ringing, my daughter beat me to it. I gleefully said, “How are things going?” She responded, “We are stuck on the side of the road again.” 

Alternate plans were set in motion to get her assistant back to Ohio State University to teach her class on Monday while my daughter was checking into a motel in Princeton, West Virginia. 

When I woke up on Monday morning facing the possibility of driving to West Virginia when I was planning on spending every single day at home for a least 10 days in a row, I was less than thrilled. The indecision about what to do if the car is fixable, has a blown motor or if we need to tow it home are decisions I did not plan on contemplating when I had a full workload ahead of me. I have calls to make, stories to write and a son getting married in two weeks. I just wanted life to slow down for a minute so I could catch my breath but then I read about a local mom who lost her 30 something son over the weekend. She is planning a funeral. She is selecting clothes for her son to be buried in. She is contemplating life without her baby boy that she loved with all her heart and soul. As I thought about her, I prayed and was reminded that I could count it as pure joy to interrupt my daily life and get in the car, drive eight hours south to help my daughter get back home.

Perspective is a beautiful thing when we get it right. 

Melissa is a farmwife, mom and freelance writer residing on a dairy farm in southern Michigan. She is available for speaking engagements by contacting her at Visit her weblog at