It’s May 8, 2011.
I’m sitting in my new home office trying to find the right words to begin this next chapter of my "Working-from-Home" story (I suggest you read the first chapter if you haven't already...)
A quick glance at the framed letter hanging next to me turns into a long stare. I’ve read this special letter over and over and I suddenly notice that it, too, was written on May 8… 2003.
What a coincidence.
Exactly eight years ago to the day I wrote my letter of resignation. And when we moved into our new home this last summer, I found it in one of the boxes, framed it, and hung it on the wall next to me. It serves as a reminder to me of that very moment I put my fears aside and followed my heart.
"Please accept this letter as my formal notice of resignation from BMC Software..."
Oh, how sweet it sounds to read those words!
In retrospect, the eight years that have whizzed by are very little. But here I am, living a completely different life than the one I would have been living if I hadn’t written that letter.
I have a feeling this chapter will be the “Mother” of all my updates. “Mother” because it’s Mother’s Day today. And “Mother” because the Mothers in my life, my Mom and my Wife, mother to our girls, have played such an instrumental part in my success. And “Mother” because I also want to take a moment and thank my dear… Mother-in-Law (and Father-in-Law, too ;-)
In 1998, right after I got married, my in-laws sat us, the newlywed couple, down and said that they wanted to give us a sum of money for a down-payment on a house. They suggested that my parents give us the other half.
I was really thankful, but kindly refused their offer. I told them that at this stage in my life, I didn’t want to take money from anyone - not even my parents. I told them that I wanted to try and make it on my own.
My Father-in-Law sort of chuckled and then went on to say something that turned out to be more valuable than the money they had offered to give us. He said that “in our day and age” it's way too difficult (I think he used the world "impossible") for a young couple to get very far without their parents' help.
Again, I expressed my sincere gratitude. They are truly dear people who want the very best for us. But I reiterated my aspiration to make it on my own.
The truth is that I never really dreamt of having my own house – it was my wife, Naama’s, dream (I could probably live out of a backpack all my life). But that very day when I sat with my in-laws and heard the word "impossible" was the day it became my dream, too, and I decided to prove to myself (and to them) that impossible doesn’t exist.
Late last summer we moved into our new house. It’s a dream-come-true for Naama and a mission accomplished for me. I didn’t take a dime from anyone (besides Google and a few other of my online affiliates :-). You could say that it’s a house built entirely from our online earnings.
As for my in-laws, well, they still don’t completely grasp the concept of making money online, but I enjoy reminding them once in a while that in “our day and age” a young couple can reach as far as they dare to dream – even without the financial help of their parents.
So, here I am working out of this pretty cool set-up of an office Naama dreamed up for me. You could say that it’s my own little Autonomy in this house of hers… Uhem, I mean ours ;-)
In this Autonomy, I listen to my music, watch sports, and continue to develop our Websites. In 2010 our network of eight coolest-parties.com sites, all built with Site Build It! (SBI!), averaged close to 2 million unique visitors per month! It’s a rather high volume of traffic and I’m pretty sure that if we grew the company and hired a few employees we could probably increase our income. But Tamar and I don’t want to manage any employees and we don’t want to deal with customers nor suppliers. We just want to enjoy our freedom, even if it means earning less.
So, there are days (usually nights) I work, and there are days I don’t. Some days I’m full-time with Naama and the girls and other days I'm busy with my many interests and hobbies, one of which is playing soccer.
SBI! has helped me transform my life in such a profound way, that everywhere I look and with everyone I speak - I see the potential SBI! has to help bring about change to those who seek change.
I’ve still got a lot of dreams I want to accomplish and today more than ever I know that it’s not a matter of IF I’ll accomplish my dreams, it’s just a matter of which dreams I wish to accomplish first.
I’ll finish off my “Mother” of all updates with a “Daughter” of all stories:
On one of our drives to her dance class, I asked my eldest daughter, Maya, what she dreams of being when she grows up. A dancer? An actress? Maybe a singer?
She answered right back as if she had already thought it out, “Dad, I want to have my own websites.”
“Huh?! That’s what you want to do when you grow up?”
Her reply caught me completely off-guard. Why would a 10-year-old girl dream of having her own websites?
It seemed so simple to her, “Because when I grow up, I want to be able to spend time with my kids just like you spend with me…”.
That’s exactly what she said, word-for-word, and my heart melted that very moment.
Here I am back in my office, glancing over beside me and wondering what Maya’s answer would have been if I hadn’t written that letter of resignation exactly eight years ago…
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