Past, Present, and Future
Updated: Jan 22
Past, Present, and Future
Now, I may not be a therapist, but what I’m writing is therapeutic. It’s therapeutic for me. A safe place where I can express myself. This is important for all of us, to have a place to express ourselves. For some of us its through gardening, others art, for me currently its writing. I find the way I express myself flips between many mediums, such as writing, art, cooking, and playing tabletop RPG’s. I would consult with a therapist to help guide you on such a journey of self-expression, if not to reflect then to make sure you are processing everything in a healthy way.
This has been a year of ups and downs, and many trials that were put in front of me, I never lost hope. This is a look at what I personally have been through, what I currently face, and what my plans are going forward.
The trail left behind
The days of yesteryear are behind me, but not forgotten. One thing I have learned over the thirty-nine years of my life is not forget, brood, or regret the past. Things are going to happen some good some bad So, here are some of my refection’s.
For most of my life I worked in the restaurant business. Its not exactly what I wanted to do with my life. As a kid I dreamed of being artist or someone that would help people in some way. As young adult I moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to help my best friend pay rent while going to college. He was going to school to be a Chef. He had two jobs lined up for me already at a restaurant and the Philadelphia convention center. I knew nothing about cooking baking or the business, and here I was doing it all. I delivered food in the city, did dishes in the basement, worked the register, baked, worked banquet parties, and learned how to cook. My father god rest his soul was a Chef. This wasn’t something I ever inspired to do but found out later in life the apple didn’t fall far from the tree, as I had a natural aptitude for the business in whole. I moved up the chain quick from job to job till I eventually made it to the level of Executive Chef in a few hotels and restaurants.
“The Only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing” ~ Henry Ford
This was just one thing in my life I often reflect on. When I look at it now, I learned so much about business in whole from those experiences. It wasn’t the only thing I learned though. I worked in the restaurant business for so long thinking I did this for this long, how could I stop doing this now? I was thinking this because I realized I was miserable for years. I enjoyed cooking but it’s not what I wanted, its what others expected of me. I wasn’t living my own life truly. So, I made the hard choice and the all so scary choice. I left a career I built with my blood, sweat, tears, and a lot of Hard work. I went into the business of helping others. All the stories I told myself as a child where I was the hero helping others while making hard decisions, I was finally making that a reality. I was hungry for it.
Together with two people I trust, and I call my brothers we started GATE. With the thought of helping the communities we either have worked alongside or have lived in for most of our lives. We hit many bumps in the road along the way. We went from two clients to a max of thirty-five at one time in a year. All thanks to our dedication and passion for what we do. As I look back at what we have done I’m proud. We have traveled to talk on panels at conventions and ran free events opening our office to the whole community.
The day before Christmas Eve this past year my stepfather called me concerned about my mother’s health and asked if I can help him bring her to the hospital. The symptoms sounded like vertigo from what he explained. He just had surgery removing a large mass from his abdomen that thankfully wasn’t cancerous. In the house where I grew up, and my father had a hart attack and died at too young of a age, my mom was telling me she thinks she had a stroke. I had to relive traumas from the past while facing a very real present. It was hard to say the least.
Christmas wasn’t the same the same this year with my mom in the hospital. My son who is 7 at the time was happy with everything Santa brought him and called his grandma to tell her about it, how much he misses her, and to feel better soon was the highlight of my holidays. He’s my shining light. I love that little boy with all my heart. He puts a smile on my face even when I’m completely stressed out.
The day after Christmas I was told we received a letter to the office stating they are terminating our lease. All because of the fire next door that had nothing to do with us. We had taken out a loan to fix this place up, had signs made and hung, all our brochures and business cards were just redone to reflect the change in offices. It’s hard to let go of something you helped build with your own two hands.
Today is a Gift. That’s why they call it a Present.
Turns out my mom did have a minor stroke with minor side effects from it. She just got released from rehabilitation that was in a good hospital. Everyday she looks better and better and I’m thankful for that. I’m also thankful she has my amazing stepfather who went everyday to be by her side. He updated me every day I couldn’t be there. I love that man like my own father. Thank you, Carlos. This would be a lot harder without you.
Due to the stroke I feel as though traveling to Toronto to speak at Breakout Con just will not work for me this year. I decided that going to BFG Con in Maryland is much closer just to play it safe is the better option right now. I Received notice last week we were accepted for 3 panels and were invited by Jack Berkenstock from The Bodhana Group to join him on his three panels. 6 panels is a lot in three days but I’m ready. More on this in a few weeks.
From what I understand they are demolishing the building next door and maybe our office as well. That dammed fire may be a blessing in disguise though. We were locked in a five-year contract in a place that had more problems than we knew of. We are looking a few places and are hopeful we will get the one that looks to be the perfect office for us. I am in negotiations now for it. I’ll post more on this when I can finally breathe a sigh of relief when we know where we are going.
I’m talking with a few designers to possibly work on a few ideas I have rattling around in my head. As well as a friend who is working on his own designs that I’m helping with. Jae, I look forward to meeting more this year to work on those games with you. I’m so glad I pushed you this year to go to Metatopia. I feel like it sparked something in you.
It took a lot for me to get here, but now that the dust is starting to settle, I’m sure a new set of challenges are around the corner. I’m ready and anticipate new challenges, they can only make me stronger.
Hope is passion for what is possible
Even though 2019 ended rough for me and the company, I’m hopeful and excited for what comes. The opportunity to have a fresh start, in a new place. It’s time to put all I have learned to make wherever our office ends up, looks the part we need it to. Somewhere I can put all the knowledge I learned to good use.
“Optimism is the most important human trait, because it allows us to evolve our idea, to improve our situation, and to hope for a better tomorrow.” ~Seth Godin
I’m eager to spend time with my family all together, eat and reminisce on good times. I’ll pray we all stay healthy going forward and go to the doctors regularly for checkups. Most of all I can’t wait to teach my son how to ride a bike this spring.
I’m excited to speak at BFG Con and get to hang out with Jack Berkenstock this time. I’m going to hold you to that game of Ghostbusters Jack.
This year myself and Brian will be collaborating with other writers to add more resources and diversity to the blog.
I truly would love to here what you think so please leave a supportive comment. It would mean the world to me if you let me know one thing you went through, something your facing now, and one thing you are looking forward to. Here is to a New Year and a better tomorrow!
If your interested in collaborating with us on this blog let us know in the comments or by emailing us at email@example.com
“Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning.” ~Albert Einstein
By Timothy Grant