A little more than a year ago, I made a decision that I knew would change the course of my life but I had no idea of the overall impact. With the birth of my 10th child, I realized all that I had missed in pursuit of the all mighty dollar. So, circumstance took over. The reality was, I had 10 kids and I was unemployed by choice. I decided to step out of my comfort zone. I spent a great deal of time getting to know my kids, spending time doing the things that I could never seem to take more than a day off to do. I had no thought of what I would do in the future and frankly, at that time I didn’t care. Being unemployed is a learning experience. I learned who my friends were. Many that I had helped get jobs, gave business to and connected them with others were all of sudden silent. This is when the realization hit, the success we create is our own. Thankfully, I was financially prepared for everything that came my way. No one expected me to be financially savvy. I mean, I ran a multi-million operation, a house of 12 plus and had a small business. Many underestimated my ability to survive. Who quits a job with one income and a large family, I have been asked. I did! There are many components to life. There are two that stand out to me risk and respect. If you aren’t willing to take the risk, the reward may never come and if people don’t respect you, there are two choices, accept it or walk away!
We are given this life and something we all have, free will. I could have worked, kept going as I was or stopped, reflected and established priorities. My choice, my free will was to get to know my kids. There were circumstances that led up to my decision but the decision was the right one, I will not make an excuse there. Many people would love to do what I did but for every action there is a reaction. You have to be prepared. It hasn’t been all sunshine and rainbows but what calmed the fear was hope, hope that because I did the right thing, I would find the right thing. I don’t care what you believe in. I know I was blessed with 10 beautiful lives that depend on me to put them first and I didn’t realize that until my last child was born. I am grateful, I saw it then and not at 50 or 60. Do what life calls you to do, don’t make it about money, make it about memories, and make it about life and how you leave people feeling. Make it about a legacy, a role model that can be appreciated and shared from your children to their children but never make it about the money. So, yes, I have 10 kids and I was unemployed but I had love in my heart and no regret about my decision, ever! I love my 9 Lazy Kids and a baby but they were ready for dad to go back to work! That is when my future was revealed. I had 3 job opportunities. I only made it to two of them before receiving offers from both. So, it was decision time. Was I going to Los Angeles or Orlando? My decision led me across country to Los Angeles. As I reflect back now on the past year and see many folks in the same place they were a year ago, I know what separates us, passion, love and risk. Change can be scary and exciting but what will be your driver to take the leap? Mine was 9 Lazy Kidz and a baby!
Michelle and Martin Ervin have had the privilege of raising 9 amazing children. We will share #parenting advice, recipes and anything that has to do with our fantastic journey