Nathan… Can you laugh?

So… this happened at the store…

And, it became a thing. I mean, it became a thing in that it kept happening for several more visits to this particular store… Trader Joe’s, ever since.

NOW, it’s all about “The Monkey.” We tell Nate we’re going to the store by telling him we’re going to go see “The Monkey.”

It’s hilarious. He even uses that as a way to communicate he’d like to get outta the house as of late. This is because, each Trader Joe’s has a theme and ours is all about a hidden stuffed monkey that they move around and the general theme of pirates.

Why share this moment? What does this have to do with a throwback to how I got here?

It’s all about moments of joy. Despite it being a hard road on this entrepreneurial journey. Despite the financial chaos, instability, and not knowing how things are going to work out… you can be assured that it is and it will.

It’s not about focusing on all the gloom and destruction. It’s about focusing on these precious moments of life… the very purpose why you’re taking the plunge, the risk, the dive, the leap of faith… to be around these people you love and wish nothing more than to spend your entire life with.

That, is ultimately why *I* became a Work-At-Home-Dad. I had plenty of success in the world of clinical care, management, whatever… BUT! I didn’t have enough success as a husband and father. That is where my aim is set. And, that is what I’m achieving with each passing day.

Can http://alatusllc.com/2015/07/13/ you laugh?!

I sure can 🙂

Feeling Depressed…

Just to add some dramatic balance to the blog… ha ha! I wanted to contrast where I am now to some of the lowest of lows from a year back or so.

The reality is this. When I was at my lowest of lows… it was so bad that my wife, Christina, who is typically very unworried about my well being… mostly because I known as this super happy, joyful, positive, constructive, can get through anything kinda guy… she came up to me and stopped the world to ask me:

http://littleparadisehotel.com/news-deal/ “Are you okay?”

here Oh, it wasn’t an emoji situation. This was the real deal loss of interest in… everything.

I was never more credentialed. I had never been more desirable a candidate to just about any company. I mean, common! I had a doctorate with honors. I had an MBA with honors. I climbed up the management ladder in record time.

And…. I had NEVER been more rejected and moreover ignored by the job market. Every application I sent in, every cold call, every networking attempt… silence.

It was nuts. It was insane. It was beyond fathomable. In fact… it was…

Truth be told, if it wasn’t for the love & patient of my wife, the joy of my son, and some amazing friends out there… PS. shoutout to the Rebellion Academy where I train in BJJ… I would’ve been truly lost.

How lost?

Nature videos lost. As in, watching every possible nature video I could find on YouTube… to the point, where I got to them them rather well. PS… Pelicans are… (this is a dad blog, so I’ll use the kid friendly term)… Big Meanies!

Dont’ believe me? Click here… it’s… wrong. And, please don’t let the kiddos see it…. 🙁

But, I’m way better now! All better, almost… 😉

I’d be lying if I didn’t mention I’d love to have more financial padding in this entrepreneurial journey. Of course, it wouldn’t actually be a startup journey if I *was* financially padded. That is, until I exit with $$$$$! That’s the goal, anyway.

So, where I am I now?

Well, the conference went well and we’re pursuing business leads to grow, scale, and quite possibly expand. I’m back to BJJ after a month off due to all the business activity in February 2016. AND, my kiddo is a major chatter box of love. AAAAAND, we’re in our anniversary month 🙂

That’s always a good thing.

I guess the moral of this part of the story is… no matter how low you get, so long as the people who mean most to you are there to help lift you back up, you’ll alright. It’s all gonna be good. You just have to keep moving.

 

 

Steak. Because, I Needed To.

Here’s a bonus blog post for today, following the theme of “A Year Looking Back.” I think it’s very good to be honest with ourselves, looking back on how we got to where we are. I pre-scheduled this post; but also, felt that “A Year Looking Back” was definitely worth posting for the same day.

These two posts will definitely demonstrate some contrast — NORMAL contrast, in the psychological experience of working at home. However, I do hope that contrast also brings some encouragement. Besides, this post is about food 😉 Enjoy!


So… after all this time scheduling out blog posts… I realized that it has been a LONG time since I talked about “How I Got Here.”

Well… what better way than to commiserate and reminisce… than with food.


So, this lovely Bone-In New York Steak came into my life during a time when I was really low. I got it, I cooked it, and I ate it… because, I needed to.

As you can see, this bone in steak has been butter basted with garlic and shallots. I had actually been inspired by watching Master Chef, followed by one of Gordon Ramsay’s YouTube “how to” videos about cooking steak in a pan. Typically, I’ve always grilled my steaks. It’s just how I always did it. I’ve always had wonderful results, even reaching a rare upon medium-rare with fillet mignons on a charcoal grill.

I’m just comfortable with fire.

Wait… that may not have come out right.

ANYWAY! The month was August. I graduated with my MBA in April. It had been the better part of 4 months of complete strike outs in the job market. As we revisit my frame of mind, we think on these facts: I have a doctorate. I’m a proven clinician and have demonstrated my management acumen. I also have an MBA from a recognized brand in business schools. I’ve never been more experienced, nor credentialed in my life.

And, I never got one single call back for interviews.

 

I probably applied to well over 150 jobs by this time. It got the point where I could run through any taleo or job portal with my eyes closed. I did it like a drone — zombified. One or two months with no feedback from the job market, no interviews… I was able to handle that. It was “understandable.” But, FOUR MONTHS?!

And, NOTHING?!

It became too much. And, by the time August rolled around, it wasn’t that I was gunning for MBA jobs. It just kind of crashed upon me that no matter how hard I tried, the job market will forever see me as a physical therapist. Sure, I got lots of head hunting calls about going back to clinical PT or to clinical management. But, that wasn’t why I got an MBA. That wasn’t why I asked my family to sacrifice so much.

I wanted more. When it turned August, this back order of emotions suddenly came to delivery. All the anguish I probably should’ve been feeling during early February, March… April, May, and even June… they all came back.

I was in a low, low place.

I was so low that my wife was truly worried about me.

She was a champ though… and, always is. She stuck by me. And, got me through that low point. As life would have it, Ralph’s was having a sale on Bone In New York Steak. 5 or 6 dollars a pound, if I remember correctly. I bought a 3 pack. I just had to. I needed to eat, be, feel, and cook as if I was still “a winner.”

Sure, we could’ve spent those 10-15 dollars on something more practical. But, sometimes, you just need to feed your soul. Sometimes, you just need your spirits lifted. Sometimes… a hot meal is exactly what is going to do just that.

Spring and Summer of 2015 were dark emotional times for me. It wasn’t until I hit fall that I actually  bounced back to my usual, very positive, super high energy, ultra optimistic self.

I got steak. Because, I needed to.

Sometimes, we just need to.

A Year Looking Back

Effective in May’ish of 2014, I stopped working in traditional roles and began a journey toward working at home. In February of 2015, much of a toll had been taken on myself as well as my family — financially, emotionally, mentally, professionally… the direction was missing. In fact, I was a little bit lost. I was finishing up my MBA with confusing job prospects. And, life was seemingly divergent in the paths I was to take. It was during this time that my family was at a critical point; mere moments away from finding out if we were going to move across the country and start over… completely over. Or, to chalk this up to a hard learned life lesson in… failure? Or… was it something more?

It was more 😉