Lessons in failure

Kathleen Parker had quite the eulogy for Steve Jobs (Spokesman-Review—16 October 2011)in her republished column. And used his successes and failures as one of life’s lessons for the young people of today. That failure has to be part of learning to reach any kind of ultimate success. It doesn’t come easy this success, and can’t be just handed to you, as though you (the young people) were “entitled” to it. I’ll agree.

However, there are many kinds of failures. Mom is dead now, from stage four lung cancer. She physically died late Thursday night last week. However, before her death “my family” comprising my two brothers and sister seemed to have a serious problem. Of the need to ridicule, show contempt for, despise and attack myself whom they had otherwise ignored for years. And to begin squabbling with me over her assets including the house in her name, the house where I have put my home based business. Yes, before she dies. Mom was never wealthy. She had some investments. Her greatest investment was only the house she bought after selling the old place. And given the current market, it would not be as much now as she paid for it. Yet, my “family” still wants to fight over “the spoils” as it were by how they behave toward myself. Shall we put it bluntly, that some failures are never learned from if those who commit them intend to go on repeating them.

Because I am quite poor this is not something I can personally fight, but the nice thing about my particular business, is that it is ultimately portable. But regrettably after more than seven years of establishing my business here, “my family” who have their own homes, their own lives, want a piece of something they never actually contributed to but think they are “entitled” to it anyway. Myself? A section 8 housing voucher sounds like a good idea. As long as I can put my business back together, have my feline company with me, and continue to have something to look forward to well into retirement. What I call my own little success story after a long hard life of seeing constant failure. But, the company of “my family” well, that leaves a lot to be desired. After the last few weeks of turmoil, especially from “my family;” I could use some real alone time: to sort things out and to ultimately make my plans for the future without mom.

Mom could have gotten an apartment. Establishing a business part agricultural would have been rather interesting in an apartment. But what would have been truly hilarious is for “the family” to have to try vying for a rented apartment and having to settle for a piece of mom’s financial assets, what ever was left of it. But the real reason for the bitch fit over the house which mom bought and at the time fully intended to leave to me? Well, try the neighbors. To go in and be an executor of an estate that includes my Farmers’ Market based business and decide that it can simply be placed on the open market (good luck that it can be sold right away) is because a bitch for a neighbor decided that she didn’t like the fact I have feline company and what they did to the wall paper (very old) and the carpet (real cheap). Nice justification for wanting to dump it on the market and leaving me without a home. Use the neighbors. So, how to put it bluntly, not only can’t my family wait for mom to die, but they are also going to engage in a slug fest with me over whether I can continue to live here even before mom dies. Including attacking my character. But then, what can I say? We grew up in a very abusive environment, it was ultimately something that got taught to my brothers and sister. But whether they were prepared to pass that on to their own families, I hope not. But they were prepared to make sure I got the brunt of it in the weeks prior to mom’s death, and on the day of her death. In which case, a section 8 housing voucher becomes even more appealing. I won’t have to deal with over-grown two year olds. I get something I like, I won’t be leaving a forwarding address. Seriously.

But while I apply for this and other available assistance, it will take time for the dust to settle. I have no problem moving on. But it will take time before I know what I have to move forward to. There is still work, I got in some extra hours last night. I have a customer for some knitted goods that I am going to make for her. So there is a guarantee that I can extend my business beyond the market itself. I have something to work for, something to look forward to, that is my story of success. I can only wonder what my “family” will have to look forward to when they are only able to hand the house keys to? And then can only go “home” from here. I think, that it will have proven their failure. I have my own home ultimately, work toward having a life for myself; like Steve Jobs, no setback will stop me.


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