Sorry for the delay in publishing this post. Sorry for the delay in posting anything for that matter. With this entry being over a month in the making, it has seen approximately 7 iterations where I’ve scrapped and then rewritten the entire post. Talk about a waste of time. Talk about a lack of confidence in my blog writing convictions. Maybe it was the holiday season; Thanksgiving, Christmas and an old house with no heat that made writing at night feel like Bob Cratchit working under Scrooge. It wasn’t that bad, I promise. San Diego is not that cold. The heater thing is kinda upsetting though.
So yeah, I’m sorry. But with that apology, I’m going to take it upon myself to make up for it 100%. You might not get a blog post every day, but I’m sure going to try and do a lot better. Heck, it’s the new year! Resolutions, goals and everything else we try and tell ourselves to do come January 1st, they’re all in abundance right now. So here’s to the future!
Understanding My Priorities
It took a Thanksgiving dinner, chats with friends and family and then the birth of Mark Zuckerberg’s daughter to help push me into a new focus for my life. Yeah, I know that’s a pretty big statement, but I think it’s going to stick. Here’s the gist…
Right after Thanksgiving, Mark and his wife Priscilla Chan announced the birth of their daughter Max via a not so subtle letter on Facebook. Prefacing everything with an attempt to describe the feeling of being a new parent, Mark then goes on to talk about the world where Max is going to be growing up in.
Like all parents, we want you to grow up in a world better than ours today. While headlines often focus on what’s wrong, in many ways the world is getting better. Health is improving. Poverty is shrinking. Knowledge is growing. People are connecting. Technological progress in every field means your life should be dramatically better than ours today. — Mark
You know, I never really did give it that much thought. The idea of cultivating a world that X and Lex would be inheriting. Maybe it was because I felt my role as a contributor was small. Maybe it was because I was more worried about paying the bills and supporting my family than caring about other people’s families. In the end, I knew that at some point it may become important, it just wasn’t a huge priority.
Mark, however struck a chord. He talks about education, equality, technology and the overall advancement and growth of a world any truly optimistic person could hope for. Sure, I may not have 99% of Facebook at my disposal to reinvest and put to good use, but I have to have something, right?
You can tell I’ve been thinking about this kind of stuff with the focus of this blog. I’ve tried talking about my blogging focus from a high level on one or two occasions, but I’ve always been in a different state of mind. It’s always been about the family or my life. I’m not saying that it’s not going to be that, I just think that there’s some kind of ulterior motive that’s going on. Which now brings me to the point of this post…
We will do our part to make this happen, not only because we love you, but also because we have a moral responsibility to all children in the next generation. – Mark
What Can I Do More?
I’m not talking about Mark and Priscilla donating their time and money to bettering the life of Max and everyone else on this planet for that matter. I’m talking about the things I can do by myself to allow X and Lex the opportunity to cultivate the same kind of understanding.
Father by example. Lead by example. The things that I show passion towards, will ultimately shape the things that my sons will covet. I think I have my own dad to thank for this. While he worked hard at his job every single day, he never wavered in his commitment to supporting his family, and he never wavered in his trust of my mom and her ability to manage our family. At the same time, he was a strong advocate for pursuing your own passion. You want to do something? That’s awesome, go do it, so long as you… do it.
So what is it that I want X and Lex to understand? What is it that I am able to do for them that will help continue to grow their beautifully childish yet optimistic minds?
I think it’s about being more present. I’ve been telling people that this is my new year’s resolution, and it seems like it’s been a popular trend. You can take that however you want, but for me, it’s a combination of things like: being more available, taking part in more things, helping X learn to read (along with Andrea who does that with her students every day) and at the end of the day, caring less about myself. Maybe caring less about what I think I want is the biggest way that I can do more. That makes a lot of sense, right?
Maybe a marathon Lego building session on Saturday morning or family jog along the California coast is better than sleeping in for 30 extra minutes. Maybe taking the family to a community service event on our free day is better than watching reruns of Jake and the Neverland Pirates. Heck, maybe giving away freelance work is better than charging for it… more on that later 😉 Ultimately, I think it’s about being available. It’s about taking a courageous leap towards a path of greater presence. That’s it… that’s my charge.
Sounds a bit overwhelming? Maybe, but in the end, I think I’m just telling myself to enjoy life.
Happy New Year!