With Age Comes Wisdom
Greetings to all those who have followed my business Personal Protection Training, as well as to my students. It has been quite some time since I wrote a blog and the last post I wrote was with the one and only Richard Dimitri. I want to express my thanks for Richard letting me interview him, and more importantly for the work him, Chris Roberts and Pamela Armitage are doing with Safe International. Keep up the good work and continue to inspire those in our industry to stay true to the mission.
The last couple of months have flown by and I have been busy working away like always, networking, training my small group of dedicated students, working crowd control/security, painting a friends house and preparing my home for the last 5 years for sale. It has been quite a stressful time as there have been some serious life changes that have happened in the last 6 months. I thought I would talk about something personal which has taken time to openly share and to get some much needed closure.
Almost 6 months ago, I ended my relationship with the woman I loved. It was a difficult choice to make but I felt I needed to do so because with all the sudden changes in my life, I had to re evaluate my life and those who are in it. With the immense workload I have had and responsibility of managing security and working interstate for high profile sporting events earlier in the year, it began to take its toll as she also worked shift work just like me.
Our relationship wasn't conventional by any means and in fact over time we drifted apart. In fact, this time two years ago, we were in Indonesia for 10 days to celebrate my birthday and were seeing the sights together as a loving albeit slightly quirky couple. That is the most time we ever spent together.
Upon returning from that trip from Bintan, We fell back into the usual routine and over time we were so consumed with our work, that day by day we couldnt even find the time to spend more then a one day a fortnight together. When we were together we mainly were at home watching movies, having home cooked meals and on the odd occasion whip out the board games before she would go back to her mother's house.
The fact of the matter is, when I first met her she was my rock. How did I meet her? Out on security patrol twice a week, I would made a quick visit in the patrol car to my local Hungry Jack's. It was a former colleague who would accompany me who suggested I ask her out. She noticed the gleam in her eye, whenever I would collect the order.
We got to know each other over the intercom, whenever I would do the lunch run for the staff. I then asked her out and gave her my number on the back of a fuel docket. Several days later she contacted me (No Tinder needed here)
She knowingly entered a relationship with a man after 3 dates, who 3 years ago had no money, had just lost his job due to corporate downsizing, lost his father to pancreatic cancer and was in personal debt to the tune of $60,000. Having her and a close friend sit by my side at my father's funeral was when I knew I was quite fortunate indeed. From that moment on, I made a pledge to turn my life around and give her the lifestyle she deserved. I felt ashamed that most of the time I couldnt even afford to buy her dinner when we would go out on dates. She would always pay.
And when we would go out on dates, it would be something like a couple of rounds of mini golf, bowling or just going for a drive. I would be lucky to spend $50 on our dates for the both of us, thanks to the myriad of living expenses one acquires when running a household.
When I finally got work, I went back to construction work full time and would deliver pizzas after work plus do occasional shifts working crowd control at a Karaoke Bar, To make it even more challenging, I decided to throw some online study into the mix and study a Diploma in Management.
As a male, I felt emasculated because I should be taking care of her. I know these days, it may not seem like a big deal to most women, but ask most men, particular in my age bracket and they often would like to be able treat their partner to some of the finer things in life during the course of their relationship. Although in saying that, she was the kind of girl who was happy with a bowl of chips as opposed to lobster and caviar.
But, as I have worked out in these 34 years I have been on this earth, is that sometimes you have to know when its the right time to move on with your life. Once, I completed my Diploma, my life began to turn around. I decided, to focus on building Personal Protection Training and get heavily involved in business networking, attending seminars and getting on top of my finances.
In fact, I did end up clearing my debt, using the right financial strategy and during this journey I found that she and I began to have less in common. I would often ask her to attend finacnial seminars to help plan for our future, as she was still living at home, I think she didnt see the importance of it at the time.
She was initially content with working the same job she had since she was 16. Unlike me, I strived to have not just a job, but to leave a legacy. My protege Lisa and I have built something very special, which is a network for those most vulnerable to find comfort in self defence training, whilst having access to some of the best specialists in the fields of mental health, trauma coaching and self development.
My Kung Fu training has helped me to understand one thing. Whilst, I have been doing all this extra work I needed to let go of things that no longer serving me well, as they were making me sick. I needed to take a step back and begin working on myself and putting my health first. Lessen the workload and learn to delegate, no more night shifts, getting more sleep, losing weight, eating better, spending more time with those that seek to improve their lives day by day, and leave a relationship that ran its course.
It was a mutual end to the relationship, and as hard as it was having the conversation we both knew it wasn't working the way it should.
I can honestly say, before ending things earlier this year, that those 2.5 years with her taught me the importance of human connection, something which I struggled with for many years before that. I have never been in a relationship with a woman as long as I had with her. In fact, since we have been apart, we still talk on occasion and I found out she has begun studying to become a Kindergarten Teacher.
I am not sure if I influenced her to do great things with her life, but one thing is for sure that without a doubt, despite the fact we weren't the most conventional couple, she certainly taught me the importance of being there for those in their time of need...