Craig: [28:53] Is there anything else that you’d like to share with us?
Travis: [28:57] Yeah, if … A message that no matter what your faith is or if it exists or what your beliefs are, I think something that can be universal is a heart of thankfulness. Yes, it’s resounding and very important in the Christian faith, but changing your heart to just appreciate everything, everything, because it’s shaping you. It’s an opportunity.
Travis: [29:33] I had a terrible college experience. I had a lot of what I called first and last semester college professors, because I was early childhood. So a lot of second-, third-grade teachers heard from a colleague that you can make really good money teaching night classes, I’m assuming. So then you come and you’re like, “You are not a college professor. You are probably a fantastic grade school teacher. You have no idea how to talk to adults.”
Craig: [30:03] So bending over with their hands on their knees, “Now, this is what we’re gonna learn.”
Travis: [30:06] Yeah, right. So I was … I went to a private college, and I was paying a lot to be there, to have that experience. After the first, second one, where I could’ve been upset about it, I just realized that there’s something I can gain from this. In the most terrible circumstance, there’s something that I can use to help me improve.
Travis: [30:35] I think, at the heart, at the core of a heart of thankfulness, is that ability to see what’s shaping you and what’s improving you. I just … I don’t know. The people that I meet and I encounter, I try to share that, that idea that that’s going to provide you with perseverance and patience and positivity. Like I said, whether it’s a Christian faith or not, it’s just … It’s important to do that, to be the giver, not the taker, to say, “Thank you so much for this” instead of “You can do this better,” taking away from it.
Craig: [31:17] So that strikes me as a sort of ability to choose your perspective on what’s going on. Where did you get that skill from? Can you take me back to a time when Travis just didn’t have that perspective? How did you get from there to where you are now?
Travis: [31:36] So many uncustomary things have happened to me. I taught in public school for three years. Through prayer, I asked God for advice on the direction that I should go, and I thought I heard what was a clear, “Leave your hourly rate. Leave your job security. Leave your guaranteed insurance. Go do this parkour. This is the path that I want for you.” I thought that was clear to me.
Travis: [32:12] I broke my leg a week before summer ended in a kickball game. I slipped in the grass. Students vs. staff kickball game. I broke my leg at school, right before parkour. Summer, there’s a big bang of classes and everything …
Craig: [32:29] Right.
Travis: [32:29] … that this was about to begin. I didn’t get it, because, like I said, not that I heard God’s voice, but I was just trying to listen to the different ways that He can communicate with you and said, “This is the path.”
Travis: [32:43] I said, “Why? Why would you” …
Craig: [32:45] “Break my leg right” …
Travis: [32:46] … “tell me to do something and then take away my ability to do that?” With how bad the break was, I couldn’t do anything. I couldn’t move. I just sat on a couch, and I had nothing to do but think. What I learned is that He needed to me how to ask others for help.
Travis: [33:06] So one of the huge personal drawbacks of going … Before choosing to follow Christ and now was my arrogance, that I can just always do it, that I don’t need your help, and like I am great and it’s me. It was still lingering, that idea, and He took away my ability to walk.
Travis: [33:28] For everything, I needed help – for everything. I couldn’t stand up. The swelling was too much, and it would be too painful. I had to crawl around. I couldn’t really bathe. I couldn’t really get myself food – like, “That’s the counter. I have to stand up,” and it was too painful.
Travis: [33:42] I saw, then, once I learned how to do my first jump again, which was a whole ‘nother experience and wonderful. Wonderful to reset your training from the ground. I couldn’t run, I couldn’t jump, and I did my first rail precision, like five years after I had already done my first rail precision.
Craig: [34:00] Right. Yep.
Travis: [34:01] It was so neat to go through the emotions again.
Craig: [34:04] Yeah, when do you ever get to have a second first?
Travis: [34:04] Yeah, yeah, yeah. I saw, then, in the next few years how I needed to depend on others and how I would not have been successful if I hadn’t been taught that lesson through breaking my leg.
Travis: [34:19] So I’ve had to learn lessons like that in life in really difficult ways, but understanding that it’s a lesson and not just this huge wall that’s in front of me that I just have to wait until it passes. It’s my method of being taught. I mean, oftentimes, we refer to God as your Heavenly Father, and I see it more so in less of that term and more so as like my Father who has raised me and knows me best and does the things that I hate. “You have to be home at 10:00.”
Travis: [34:52] “Why? Why do I have to be home at 10:00?”, not seeing that, all of the terrible things that can happen after 10:00 in your city or what it might be.
Craig: [34:57] Right, and you need to go to sleep so you can do tomorrow. Right?
Travis: [34:59] Correct. You don’t see those things, and you think, “Oh, what a terrible thing.”
Craig: [35:05] Authoritarian. Right.
Travis: [35:05] Right, right, right. Then you get a little bit older and you realize, “Wow. That was a great decision for me that I couldn’t make for myself.” So that heart of thankfulness is through those really difficult experiences that I’ve seen now, years passed, why I needed that. When you’re in it …
Travis: [35:25] I use this for people in parkour, like, “Okay, we have one hour. Hey, guys, we’re just going to start at this end, and we’re just gonna end at the other end, that other end that we can’t see. Yeah, we’re just gonna crawl. We have a 50-minute time limit.”
Travis: [35:42] “What?”
Travis: [35:46] But the lesson taught is, like, “During it, you’re going to want to stop, and you’re not going to remember that there’s an end. You’re to going to remember that there is a finish. You’re going to be so caught up within the movement itself and say it’s never-ending. You have these infinitive talks to yourself, like it hurts so much and there’s no end to it.”
Travis: [36:07] “To remember that there’s an end result, there’s a goal, there’s a place that you are going, and at the end, you are going to be so happy that you’ve gone through this. During it, you’re going to hate it.”
Travis: [36:18] People get caught up in that, through life and through certain exercises and whatnot, that they just think that this is what it’s all about and don’t really see where this is leading them – to be present in what you’re doing, but understand where you’re going.