Every decision creates a different path, sets a various pattern into motion whether seen or unseen. As small as driving another way to work or stopping at this gas station instead of the next, or deciding to take a walk in the morning. I might see something that I wouldn't have if I had stopped at the grocery store up the street. A memory to take with with me and share amongst my friends and family.
An experience that can shape the way I think, or a conversation with someone I had when I went on a walk in the morning. A relationship made that could be beneficial for future networking purposes, exchanging information and setting a day to sit down and talk. Meeting of a potential significant other when choosing to go to Aldi's instead of Walmart, each decision creating a different outcome.
What's uncanny is the fact that the result of these decisions are always unknown. After making each one, wondering if it was the right choice hoping that the effects are not long lasting. Self-analyzing trying to decide if I'm letting the past dictate my future or have I matured past a certain stage in my life.
Past failures, stumbles, and successes shape us and in turn alter our point of view causing determined or erratic thoughts. The boy who was cut from the middle school basketball team and took the notion to give up on his dream which has been the center of his turmoil of not wanting to start something new or tryout again. Whereas, me, when I got cut both 7th and 8th grade year it drove me to go harder and inspired me to never give up.
That particular mishap shaped me. Ever since I always felt the need to prove people wrong and make sure that I'm the hardest working person on and off the court. I believed that even if I wasn't the best, there wouldn't be a soul to step on the court that would outwork me. Sequentially, in this new arena of entrepreneurship, I carry the same sentiment.
Except the grind is different and how it's measured isn't akin to anything I'm used to, only resemblance is knowing that the future isn't promised. Knowing that I could tear an ACL, lose passion for writing, or lose myself due to the weight of life crushing me further and further until I'm indiscernible granulates.
The decision whether to keep hooping chasing a dream that captured my childhood and strengthened my core. The decision to continue writing this book or let the apprehensive thoughts of failure distort the path I set for myself for finishing. Do I continue the podcast even though it ostensibly feels as if I'm losing listeners everyday. Do I allow myself to experience the same cycles when it comes to a relationship or do I cut it off before emotions are too involved.
Who knows where the game will end up taking me, what people I would meet, the potential networking and traveling the world. Might even meet my wife, although the search doesn't seem worth it half the time. Only God knows if this book I'm writing will actually be the influence that I desire or will it be another piece of art lost in Amazon's archives. I also have no idea if the podcast will kick off to the point where every week I have a guest and have multiple episodes ready to edit and broadcast.
Interviews lined up out the door, my own studio, and the ramping up of related material like the YouTube version of For Fathers Podcast. the cap is limitless if I continue to pursue but if I decide to quit, not only will I feel unsuccessful but I would be wondering "what if" I did.
That's something my dad always reiterated, coining the phrase "wisher club." Pertaining to the aforementioned what ifs, he always made sure to instill in us to not have regrets in life. Much like the basketball phrase "leave it all on the court," my dad implored that we give our best in all that we do so that we won't have to say...
"I wish I had."
The worst statement that can part the human lips, a plea to God to get back time wasted. Wishing for a do over, knowing that we only got one life it's pertinent that we follow passions first time around.
I just hopped off the podcast with an old friend and teammate and we were talking about our wisher club. Reminiscing on the days wondering where we would be if we had more guidance on the court and for him, off as well. Pondering the decisions of some of our classmates and those in former neighborhoods doing the same thing as 10-15 years ago.
What a life to live, one without purpose, without passion, without a burning desire to make something of myself. Everyday wanting to be better than the last, praying for repentance and strength to stay away from what is making me drop to my knees. The late nights and the determined cries as well as the frustrated ones. Long walks staring at the sky or scuffing the ground kicking rocks to the side.
In deep thought, hunching over the next move playing chess in my head castling as I utilize my knight for protection and bishop for guidance. Holding up a shield for anyone that's not quite right getting too close and praying to God for the ability to decipher what's good and what's bad for me.
That's the decision I was most recently faced with, and I think past experiences helped me push my emotions to the side and deal with the problem at hand. Which was not to deal with it at all, not to go down a similar path to return to a cyclical nature resulting in... not sure but I'm not willing to find out.
A hard decision at that, wanting what I saw before me just not some of the intangibles. Some things are worth fighting for most definitely, and if it had been anything else I would've stuck out the fight. I'm glad I found out early on because some experiences are really not meant to live twice. The saying "If it don't kill you it'll make you stronger," I believe in it but I don't think it's talking about on round two.
No doubt there will be multiple rounds of hurt pain and chaos in life but it doesn't have to be the same one. Especially, if it can be prevented. What will you do to protect your peace? I'll go to great lengths, to protect it, to find it, to relish in it, and to share it with the people I love and am close to.
Like my two beautiful daughters, one of the greatest gifts a man can have is to become a father. To be an influencer to someone breathed from parts of me. It's amazing.
Amelia and Amara, daddy loves you.