This Mother Q$#$%

You know what annoys me? Well, a lot actually, but I’m sure I’m not unique in that respect. You know what has been annoying me more than usual lately? People who walk around beating their chest and patting themselves on the back for all they’ve done. These are the same people who look down their nose at people who have fallen on hard times or just can’t seem to get things right. And I can’t stand it! This “If I can do it, why can’t they” mentality is annoyingly arrogant and egotistical. And I’ll go to my grave arguing that it is completely delusional. No man who has achieved any level of success has done it by himself. Every woman who has “made it” in this world has done it with the help of many, many others.

Don’t get me wrong; I certainly believe that we make our own luck and that the world doesn’t reward whiners and complainers. I also believe there are several roads to success for all of us and that it is our job to continue walking (or running) down the roads that present themselves until we reach our always chosen, sometimes desired location. But I’d be more than a little naïve, ignorant even, if I didn’t recognize that those paths were paved in large part by other people, other circumstances, and what a lot of people might call fate.

I grew up in a home with both parents and a big brother that all provided tremendous role models. I was an Army Brat, which helped me learn to deal with people from different backgrounds and, because we moved around a lot, to adjust to new environments quickly. I played football well, which provided not only a means, but the desire, to attend college. A former colleague of mine and one of my best friends thought enough of me to connect me with one of his friends who’d started a company and needed some finance help. That connection, with whom I didn’t always have the best of relationships (typical startup CEO and CFO conflicts mostly), not only hired me, but eventually entrusted me with so much that I was able to grow significantly as a professional in a very short period of time. And if I may go back a step or two, I only searched out finance opportunities after my first business (sports related) failed and my wife and I had given birth to our first child.

And those are just a few examples. The point is very simple. Had any of those links in the chain been different, missing, or broken; I might not be who or where I am today, writing this blog, on my own laptop, in my own house, with a wonderful family. What if my parents had split? What if I’d grown up in one place and that place wasn’t the best neighborhood? What if I didn’t play football or like school? What if my parents didn’t insist that I go to college, whether I played football or not? What if I hadn’t felt embarrassed the first time I tried to raise money for my company and realized I needed an MBA to give myself and my business more credibility? What if my sister and I weren’t so competitive, or if my brother was a terrible role model?

You get the point.

But out of all these roads along the way, none have been paved more or better or with more difficulty than those paved by the women who have shaped the man I am. My sister has been a rock in my life. With only fourteen months between us, she has often known me better than I know myself. Her support, guidance, and the occasional kick in the butt, have been the momentum I’ve needed more times in my life than I’ll ever admit to her. My mother, who has moved on to a better place, believed in me before anyone else did, often without merit it seemed. She gave me no choice than to believe I could be anything I wanted in this world. And she forced me to live up to the extremely high bar she set for me. To this day, I believe she is the main reason I became the first in my family to graduate from college. My second mom, my mother-in-law, has given me the strangest of gifts. It is because of her that I have no idea whatsoever what it feels like to have a dysfunctional relationship with your in-laws. (My father-in-law makes up for it, but I love him for it.) The mere fact that she has entrusted me with her daughter is inexplicably humbling. But without reservation, the foreman who has paved the way for navigating the most important roads of my life is my wife. She has shown incredible support in everything I’ve done, no matter how cooky or unrealistic. She has stood in my corner, refusing to throw in the towel, even while facing the most intimidating of opponents. And while I pride myself on the weight I can push around or the toughness I’ve displayed, the truth is her strength continues to provide incredible inspiration. It is because of her and my children that I will not settle for less than everything I’ve got.

So while I’ll continue to be annoyed and irritated by those who do not recognize their long list of supporters, I am thankful to them. Because while they’ll often force me to utter in disgust “look at this mother &^%*”, it also helps me remember those who have helped me in my life. Especially my four “mothers”.

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About bbluford
I am an executive finance professional with a love for process and application development (MS Access, Excel, Quickbooks), mostly as it relates to Accounting and Business Functions. I also love to write and share ideas with other people in this world. I'm an admitted Gym Rat who works out excessively. The best summation of me is that I love to teach and to learn.

3 Responses to This Mother Q$#$3

  1. Vanessa Cortes says:

    This has to be one of my favorite blogs you have posted! Thanks B!

    • bbluford says:

      I enjoyed writing it. Connecting spiritually, which is very important as you can read in my “Managing Your Energy, Not Your Time” post. Understanding that we are not in this life alone, thanking those that have helped us, AND returning the favor by ‘paying it forward’, which is what I’m trying to do with this blog, is not only fun and rewarding, it’s required for all of us. At least in my opinion.

  2. Julie Manriquez says:

    Love this post, Bobby, and you aren’t the only lucky one…Maria is lucky too!

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