SMILE EVERY TIME YOU PASS A MIRRORDamien Perez
This recollection should be of great interest to all readers who have ever believed in themselves.
I had a pleasant wife, an amazing daughter, a great business, a perfect home, an office behind my home in a separate location, a very nice trailer at my camp several hours away from my home, a $70,000 bay boat and a Lexus SUV and much more.
My business was built from $0 capital, hand work and an original idwa. I worked 60 hours a week and often worked all night at least two days a week.
One day my wife mentioned going to the beach to meet her family, which was from 12 hours away She knew that I would stay behind to work, as we never even had a honeymoon. I decided to visit my camp, which I would enjoy while still working on my company. I kissed my daughter goodbye and will always remember that one moment.
While driving on the interstate, my SUV suddenly lost control and barrelled through an abandoned car parked on the shoulder of the road. My trucl bounced several feet in the air and barrelled through a barbed-wire fence, then bounced until it slammed on the grassy ground. I was unconcious for several minutes and immediately called my wife after reaching on the floorboard for my cracked phone.
I told my wife that I thought my sternum was broken and her reply was simple: "I am not returning." I angrily hung-up thinking how selfish she was being and quickly discounted her reply.
A witness came and said that they saw my right, front tire leave my vehicle before the wreck. Police confirmed it and after ten minutes i was alone on the interstate. A friend drove me to a rental place where I got another vehicle.
As my phone rang, I answered it and it was the bank. A client's $250,000 advertising check bounced and the bank was closing my accounts due to it. I called my vendors to stop payment on my checks to them, but a decade of "friendship" meant nothing to these people as they were already cashing my payments. I went to my camp and saw that my trailer was stolen, so I went back home.
I walked into my home and it was the cleanest house I had ever seen, but it was no longer a home when I saw a utility bill on my coffee table with writing on the back. I read the back of the bill, which read "I am sorry...I love you".
I did not have any response because I did not know how to act. I did have an outstanding invoice from my greatest client for $40,000 though. He and I had been friends for years, so I went by his to sarcastically give him a hard time about the late payment. However, when I arrived at the massive 20,000 square foot construction facility with over 50 employees, no equipment was present and the enormous glass office held not even one person.
This home elevation contractor had fled the city in the middle of the night. I was broken and in proceeding months, I needed to file personal and business bankruptcy. I lost my home, my boat, my business and everything of value I had murdered myself for the last 15 years.
I then had to go through a three year custody battle for my daughter. I took a job as a pharmaceutical researcher for minimum wage, where I moved stool samples into 24 little jars at a time.
Every day I could not say that I would recover because I was not sure. There was nothing to look forward to because I knew success was so many long years away.
I noticed myself in the bathroom where I would pretend like I was using it in order to get a small break from packing human feces. I looked into the mirror and smiled for a completely unknown reason, then I laughed out loud and winked at myself.
Smiling at myself enabled me to realize how humorous my life had become and it gave me the spirit to make a valiant comeback and shock everyone who knew me.
From that moment 6 years ago, I have NEVER passed a mirror of any kind without smiling to myself, and it has helped me make a small and steady comeback.
It helped me get through custody court, it has helped me endure menial jobs until I recently started my original company back with many lessons learned, and it has made me a much happier person no matter how difficult and overwhelming life has seemed.
Things did not get easier, but the stress and gravity of the situations were of no effect to me. I owed the guy in the mirror an enormous comeback and I would die busting my ass for him.