My name is Abigail Cardone and I am the newest Intern with Shimmer Sparkle Shine for this summer! I am an International Studies Major and a Philosophy Minor in my second to last semester at BYUI. I was born and raised in sunny California, so it was a big adjustment for me to move out to the frozen tundra of Rexburg Idaho. I have been married for almost a year now to an awesome guy named Alex! We love to go on adventures and have some pretty exciting ones planned for this coming summer.
|This is us in some Slot Canyons!|
I am thrilled to be a Sparkler this summer because it allows me to do one of my favorite things, work with people and help them realize their potential. I am a tutor on BYUI campus and I have had the opportunity to show students that they are capable of being successful and then watch them change and become confident and successful, and we can do that in all aspects of our lives! So often we are telling ourselves why we cannot do something. Maybe someone else is better at it or we write ourselves off as failures from the beginning. It doesn’t have to be that way! How often do you try something once and excel at it? Not very often. But if you keep trying you will get somewhere, you will at least be proud of yourself. To me being proud of yourself is everything. I have a story for you.
I am a nervous wreck. I stress about things and I don’t like to go out of my comfort zone. One area I never felt comfortable in is jumping off of cliffs into water. Terrifies me. But I was blessed to be born with a mother who pushed me until I could learn to push myself. (Not literally, she did not push me off the cliff) There was one experience where I was canyoneering with a church group and my mom was there. There was a 30 foot cliff jump into a river that was about 100 feet from the edge of a waterfall, so you jumped and swam to the edge quick. I stood on the edge of that cliff for 30 minutes just crying. I was petrified. But I finally got the courage to jump. Few weeks later some other friends of mine when on the same trip, with the same guide, and the same thing happened to someone but he let her repel down. She didn’t have to jump. But I did. I was so mad, but my friend said something that has shaped how I try and look at things, he said, “Yeah, but aren’t you proud you did it?” And I am. I am proud I did it. Looking at things that way has opened things up for me. So when my mom asks claustrophobic me to repel down a tiny hole in the ground into a cavern? I say yes. I go once. Just so I can say I did it.
We are all afraid of something. Of standing out, of making a fool of ourselves, of making new friends or of cliff jumping. Fear is normal, we all have it. But its what we do with it that defines us. We talk about conquering fears like it will make them go away, it doesn’t. I am still afraid of tight spaces, but let me tell you, that terrified face going repelling into a hole in the ground allowed for the happy face in the tight spaces of a slot canyon above. We may never be able to “conquer” our fears and make them go away, but we can make sure they don’t conquer us. We are in control. I can say “I don’t want to go cliff jumping” because I have done it. I have faced the terror that it brings me, and because of that I know for a fact that I can do it again if I absolutely have to. Same thing goes for the rest of our lives. If we can do what scares us, even if it’s just once, we will see how strong we are. It might even surprise you what you are capable of. Strength, bravery, and confidence are in each and everyone of us, we just have to access it.