Prior to me being a family man, I have to be quite honest with you, I lived for myself. I worked just so I could party, have the things in life I wanted and have a good time. It was all about the good time. From the time I was about 14 years old, I have had the freedom to pretty much do anything I wanted in life.
I had loving parents. Grew up right on the ocean in Maui Hawaii. There were little things to fear about being a young man and being given a lot of freedom to roam the island as I pleased.
At about 15 I got my drivers license, first car, first girlfriend and my first job. I had the life that most young men dream about. No responsibility other than making sure I made it to school, showed up for work and woke up the next day to do it all over again.
Fast forward about 23 years and I look back and see the journey I took to get where I am today. It still amazes me that I am here to talk about it. I can tell you that I have had many close calls with death. Many experiences that I probably will choose not to go through again and yet I feel joy that I had the privilege of going through those times. It has made me who I am today.
A lot of the things I experienced I don’t wish to go back to. However the lessons learned are invaluable to me today.
After getting out of 6 years of college, I met my wife. At that time I was a food and beverage director at a Hilton Garden Inn (My first management position in the hotel industry.) I loved every part of that job. As I got more involved in the relationship with my soon to be wife, something shifted.
My priorities changed. 6 months later, I was married and I was expecting my first child. I began to realize that I had to change some of the habits I had formed over the previous 10 years. Did I sell out to the fact that I was married and about to be a father? Not at first. Once my first daughter Hannah was born, the reality set in.
I was no longer responsible for myself. I was now responsible for bringing a life into this world. Talk about a life changing experience. I went from doing what I wanted, when I wanted to working my schedule around my new responsibility.
A few years later came my second daughter Kaylee.
A this point, I was still in the hotel/restaurant business, working a lot of nights, waking up early in the morning to go to work on the other days. To be honest with you, I felt like my kids were growing up without me. I worked so much, they would go on vacations without me.
My mindset at that time was that I was the “provider” for my family and it was ok to dedicate every waking hour to my career. I thought that as long as I was able to provide a home, food on the table and money for necessities, I was doing my duty as a father.
I couldn’t have been farther from the truth and was living a big fat lie.
There came a point in which I had a spiritual awakening if you will. Something shifted in my very DNA and I began to realize that I was living for myself and I was holding onto a life of self pleasure. Up until that point, I was all about instant gratification. Whatever felt good at the time, I did it!
I began to look at my family in a new way. My daughters are now 7 and 10 and are my best friends. I got out of the hotel/restaurant business about 3 years ago and have worked from the comfort of my own home for the past 2.
I think about all of the moments that I missed over the years and now the moments I catch each and every day with them and don’t know how I was separated from them for so long.
It’s AMAZING being able to see your kids off to school, be home when they get home and be with them ALL of the time.
You see, we all have choices. I made a power move and wanted more than anything to work from home and made it happen.
If your a father out there and think that your making it just because your providing for your family financially, I have news, your family needs YOU more than the money you earn.
My goal now is to create as many memories with my daughters as possible. Time IS of the essence and I make sure that I pay as much attention to them as humanly possible. I cherish the relationships I have with them as well as my awesome wife Pamela.
It’s nice to know you have found your soul mate, have awesome children in which you have the influence enough to guide them to greatness in their own lives.