When my dad passed away in June of 2010, I knew without hesitation that I wanted to keep his businesses. Yes, there was more than 1. The initial response I got from people (read: my dad's family) was "you are 20 years old, you can't run a business." I basically said, "kiss my ass and watch me." Which that was a fight in itself since my aunt was left in charge of everything. I knew there was the potential to fall on my face, but I had to at least give it a shot and I would rather give it my all and not succeed than to just sell it and watch someone else benefit from something that my dad built from the ground up. I knew in high school that I wanted to work with my dad when I got out of college, and I even worked with him during my first 2 years of school during the summer and throughout my sophomore year doing the payroll and bookkeeping for him.
|I got the big head and cheeks honest|
So, a month before my 21st birthday, I went from being a full-time college student thinking about being the president of her sorority, to being a full-time college student who was the president of a crop insurance agency and a landlord (that part is boring and a complete and total pain in the ass). My roles have changed since I started doing this almost 4 years ago. At first I was mostly just a business manager and handled the behind the scenes things. I continued payroll, I maintained our contracts with the companies that we wrote for, and basically just made sure everyone was kept happy. Last January my role changed drastically.
Despite handing the agent and secretary the world on a silver f'ing platter like my dad did and keeping things basically the same as they were when my dad was around, they walked out last January and left my brother and I hanging, not knowing what was going to happen. I went from being behind the scenes to running the whole damn show with the help of my brother and one of my dad's other friends who had JUST decided to come work with us and was starting the day they left. After a month of going back and forth on selling, keeping, selling, keeping,
There are days that I really don't like what I do and I tell Danny and my mom that all the time. There are things that I think I would enjoy about a regular 9-5 job. All the problems that I deal with would be someone else's problem, I could leave work at work more, and I would have the social aspect of it. But then I then there are the days where it's all completely worth it. Like when my dad's very first customer calls and says "I'm staying with you because I loved your dad" and it almost makes me cry. Or when its 65 degrees out in May and I want to take my dog for a walk. I also get to work with my brother. Working with family is never an easy thing, but it's worth it. And now when Danny stops by with Tucker and says he's going to get a hair cut, I can say just leave him here with me for the hour or so you'll be gone.
I don't know if I'll be doing this forever. There are days that I want too and there are days that I want to find the highest bidder and leave and never look back. But then I think about my dad and how hard he worked, and how far I've come to keep that going. The sleepless nights, the tears, the screaming matches with my aunt (different story for a different day) and the long days. I don't want that to all be for nothing.
And there you have it.