Why Dads Are So Important

dad, dads, children, daughter, family, try, best, emptiness, best, share, world, ready, late, to, forgive, past, missed, survive, survived, characters, never, best, lucky, why, safe, sacrifice, daddy, important, why, role model, male, gender, present, absentFamilies come in all shapes and sizes. Some have one dad, some have two and some have none. Friends can sometimes become family and family are not always necessarily friends. I love all families and know many people have grown up with a lot of love while others had to grow up without it and do it fast.

I love listening to different stories about people’s upbringings because it provides a sense of context for their character. Some people choose to own their past as part of their framework, while others denounce it altogether and continually fight it.

I own my past, and my past and present consist of having a dad. Not just your average dad, literally the best dad. I know a lot of people say this, but I know I am right. He was and is always present in my life.

He was that dad that always meddled. The dad that met with all my teachers. The dad that was never really asleep at night because he wanted to make sure his family was safe at all times. The dad who sacrificed his everything for his family to live well. The dad who shared nothing about his job while he was home. The dad that read me a book every single night. The dad that was (and is still) the great Saint Nick every Christmas.

It hurts me when I hear some people never had a dad. Maybe it’s not even a dad they needed, but overall support and unconditional love from a good role model.

I am all about gender equality, but there is something to be said about male role models in general. They provide a certain sense of security and love I can’t really compare to anything else.

Either way, I want to thank all those dads out there who did and continue to do their best. Those dads that work overtime just to keep their family comfortable. Those dads that save up all their retirement money to help their children buy a house. Those dads who do homework with their kids even after a rough day at work. Those dads that put gas in their kid’s car. Those dads who look at their children like they are their biggest accomplishments. Those dads who adopted other people’s children as their own. Those dads who thought they weren’t ready for fatherhood but later realized it was actually their life calling.

And to those Dads who couldn’t or just weren’t ready to be present for their children: It is never too late. No matter the age, your kids needs you. No matter the circumstance, your kids will forgive you.

What I really want to let you know is that you missed out. Yes, you missed out on watching your children flourish. And although this is true, just know that most of us do the best we can with what we know at the time. Even if you didn’t, I have talked to your children. The void is still there and is still waiting to be filled. Yes, you might have seemed essential to their lives at some point but they survived without you. Wouldn’t it be nice to get to know who they became without you?

I always had a dad so I can’t speak for every circumstance, but I do know that there is a large number of people who grew up without a dad or anything resembling one. This made many people stronger and others a lot weaker. Whatever the case, I really hope more dads try to reach out to their estranged children and never stop.

I got lucky, but I still feel for those that feel an emptiness within their hearts. I wish I could just share my dad with the entire world but that goes hand in hand with my desire for world peace. Dads are important, if you happen to have kids, try your best to be one. You don’t have to be the very best dad, but at least try to be there.

Love Deeply and Forever,

Karen

How To Quit Your Job The Right Way

quit, job, work, chapter, doors, right, way, how, grace, thanks, love, gratitude, support, bye, good bye,I have been writing my entire life. It has always been my dream to move the world with my words.

Most recently, I have coached someone on their first book, I have had a personal story published in an online publication, and I have started this blog you are reading right now.

I realized that dreams don’t just “happen” to you, you must make them happen. You must will them, work toward them and believe with every ounce in your heart that you are capable and worthy of accomplishing all of them.

I am not going to lie, I once thought a degree could make all your dreams happen. I worked hard to get my undergrad and graduate degrees in communications. I took one look at the paper they hand you when you are done and realized it wasn’t as magical as I might have thought it would be.

Anyway, one day I realized I was letting my dreams dim.

I became complacent at a 9 to 5 job. It wasn’t so much because I stopped believing in myself, it was more about paying that new mortgage every month. And although some days were better than others, my detective dad’s voice always echoes in my head, “stay on your mission.” And so I did just that.

A few years went by and my dreams started tugging at my heart. My fingers wanted to write as much as my heart did. I started taking action in my writing career.

Careers don’t just show up, you must make them happen with a lot of hard work and grit.

After some years of searching, hoping, and working at it, I was offered my dream job. It all happened like a movie. I applied at 2 o’clock in the morning and was given a job offer some hours later. It almost seemed like I didn’t deserve it, but wait! I so did. I worked so hard to get to this point in my life. I mean, I had worked my entire life to get here.

So, how would I break it to my current employer? How would I tell them I was going to move on? I decided to do it with a lot of gratitude, love and respect.

I ambushed my two mentors and told them I couldn’t hold it in any longer. I looked them both in the eye and said how thankful I was to have had such a secure job for so many years. I also let them know they were a huge part of my growth since I worked for them from 22 to 28 years old.

I have never seen such shocked looks on people’s faces. We all got a bit teary-eyed. It was like I was telling them I was moving to another continent.

Their jaws dropped, their smiles fell but their eyes looked like they were filling up with love.

They both told me how proud they were of me and how they knew this day would come for me-the day when I would get to shine on my own.

I then went around my office and told every department in my own way that I was leaving in a little over a week. Just when I thought no one would notice, I saw the same looks come across their faces as those of my two bosses. I got hugs and beautiful words of encouragement, joy, support and overall love.

I was overwhelmed with feelings of accomplishment and sadness. It was the most bittersweet moment of my life.

I have watched employees come and go, but never with grace. They have slammed the doors behind them and consequently slammed the doors in front of them in the process. I refused to do this. I mean, some employees didn’t even say the words “goodbye,” or “thank you.” I always thought this was a little rude and ungrateful, but to each their own, right?

Everyone chooses their entrance and exit from one chapter to another and I hope my exit can set an example for others who may have to exit sometime in the future.

 

Love Deeply and Forever,

Karen

Why It’s Okay To Need Help

help, helping, okay, need, friend, family, love, support, pride, cowardice, anxiety, future, insecurityAs a 20-something year old, I have learned how to deal with chaos in the most graceful of ways. I don’t cry as often as I used to at the sign of dismay. I try to make the best out of every situation even if it might not seem like it at the moment.

I have done a really good at job keeping it together over the last two years. I always realize I will “be okay” and that one slight bump in the road is not necessarily the end of the world.

I have found zen within my soul on a daily basis. I can drive in bumper-to-bumper traffic with a huge smile on my face and tons of love in my heart.

While I have learned to keep my emotions and life in check (for the most part), I still have my moments. I still have anxiety visit me once in a while. It likes to remind me that I still have a lot more growing and healing to do. It reminds me not to look to far into a future that is still so very uncertain.

The best I can do is remind myself to stay in the present moment and realize life will knock me down more times than I would like to admit. The trick is to fall gracefully.

I broke down last week. I lost my composure. I cried in frustration. It was a true moment of weakness for me. I phoned all the people I care about. I let it all out.

I quickly realized I needed help. I didn’t want to admit that I don’t have my life completely together, but then I realized I don’t and that’s totally okay. Like I have said before, we never really have our shit all the way together. Anxieties will always exist and push us to overcome them in the best way we can.

I hate asking for help. I have always thought it was a sign of weakness. I am not sure where I made this idea up, but it is not healthy to think this way. I am at a point in my life where I do need help sometimes and I have a team of loved ones that are willing to lend a hand.

I feel guilty asking for help because I often feel I have nothing to give others.

And this is where my insecurities come in. Giving does not have to come in a monetary package, we give to others each day whether we feel like we do or not. We give each other love, support, service, advice and comfort. Life is a series of constant exchange.

The minute I talked to my team-my friends and family-I realized I am not alone in the world and asking for help is not a sign of cowardice. I realized I add value to the lives of others and I must acknowledge this each and every day.

I also realized that people want to help those they care about and it’s okay to take part in this exchange.

We are all in this together. Although it is easy to let pride get the best of us, help can give us more power than we ever thought possible. Accept help when needed and remember to help others in need. You never know when the next helpful exchange may happen.

Love Deeply and Forever,

Karen