Baseball has never been my thing, but I’m learning to deal with the big curve balls that keep coming my way.
Last year, before my father’s health went into its final descent, he asked me to help him with his unfinished business interests. Since his death, the task has been something close to a second full-time job.
I’m now in charge of cleaning up and selling the building that housed the family business. The work needed on the property is extensive and expensive. There are additional plots of land I’m responsible for selling, and there are accounts I have to manage responsibly — all while doing the best work I can in my real career as a writer in the information security industry. Work days are frequently interrupted with phone calls from lawyers, financial advisors, and real-estate people. And then there are bills to pay to keep the building standing.
Business is not my background and I never wanted this additional work. Life was already full and busy. I didn’t think I was up to the task because of my limited knowledge about real estate, investments and all the people that come with it. I was scared, frankly.
I was worried about mismanaging the family legacy. I was worried it would make me more absent as a father and husband. I was worried that my real job would suffer.
It’s still a major stress in my life and will be for years to come. But along the way something has happened: I’ve learned to carry the load and am even willing to contemplate the possibility that I’m getting good at this.
To my astonishment, I’ve still been able to give my real job 100 percent. And with the family business legacy tasks, I finally feel like I’m in full command. Though I want to punch my fist through walls many days, I’m glad I took this on. I’ve learned a ton, and the knowledge will be valuable going forward.
I think I’ve been able to do all this without neglecting my wife and kids. I certainly hope so. My faith has sustained me. Many awesome friends have helped me along, too. And the members of my household have been extremely patient. I’m grateful for that.
My coping tools have helped, though I admit there are days I forget to use them.
That’s how life works. Curve balls come our way and we either learn to catch them or get slammed in the face. I’ve taken a few blows to the head along the way, but I’m learning to play the game.