I remember looking at them back then and imagining a future when all of them had graduated from college. They would all be on their own, financially independent, married and with children. I thought of them scattered across the country…
I grew up in the New Jersey suburbs with typical boyish aspirations of being a football player, astronaut, fireman or Olympian. I didn’t consider growing up to be a leader. But it happened somehow… So here’s why I lead:
It’s hard to believe that a whole year has passed since they were married last December in Israel. I recall sitting on the 10 hour flight reminiscing about what happened over the past 19 years of caring for her and her 4 siblings as a single and sole parent.
I have spent the last 19 years raising my kids by myself, which has taught me more than I could ever possibly write about what is really important. So in the holiday spirit, I share the 12 things I wish for this coming year.
If your son or daughter came to you, enraged at a group of people based on their ethnicities, ideologies, or religious beliefs and you sensed he or she might commit an act of violence – how would you try to calm him or her down?
It was late 1996 and my marriage and family life I dreamt of was ending. My wife of 8 years and mother of our 5 small children was gone. The emotional strain of it all caused me to let myself go and I weighed on the wrong side of 300lbs. I felt undesirable, and I feared I may be alone forever.
I went to see “The Intern” because of its star actors. Academy Award winner Anne Hathaway is a talented and versatile actress, who also happens to have gone to the same high school in NJ as my 5 children. Academy Award winner Robert De Niro, is simply one of the best actors of all-time.
When I was little boy growing up in the New Jersey suburbs, my idea of a what it took to be a man was formed by the stereotypes I watched in the movies and on TV. I wanted to be a combination of Dirty Harry, James Bond (Sean Connery only) and the Fonz.
I was hoping the movie would portray a single-dad positively and break the stereotype that men are unemotional, materialistic and unable to parent effectively by themselves. Unfortunately, the dad was portrayed as clueless and was so level-headed he seemed to be devoid of all emotion.
Give me liberty or give me a hot dog and a beer. It’s good to have an option. In the heat of roaring BBQ’s and deafening sounds and bright flashes from fireworks, it’s easy to forget what the 4th of July is all about – An independence hard fought and earned that started from a dream.