Young people, take heed and listen.
Recently, I had to say goodbye to my last dog, Mooney, who was 16 years old.
We were with each other every day of his life since he was 3 months old, literally without exaggeration, never apart for a 24 hour period.
I passed up a career opportunity once because of my two dogs. The job involved extensive travel and I had to choose either the career job or the dogs; no in-betweens.
I chose the latter.
Being a human being, I have selfish thoughts as we sometimes probably all do, and have wondered what it would have been like to chase the almighty career.
With my hand securely on a Bible, believe I made the right choice.
A number of you will someday be faced with a similar dilemma. With respect toward your parents, I am not trying to dissuade you from pursuing a career. But if my words alone are not enough, please take heed and listen to the following factual stories.
In a documentary about Angola Prison in Louisiana, a person profiled was a man dying of cancer in the prison hospital. He was in prison for killing his wife, as he warned her if she abused her son, his stepson again, it would be the end of her.
Four fellow inmates of the prison age, 30 to 40 approximately, brought him a last meal.
To say the words he spoke to them were moving would be an understatement.
He had all four in tears.
He said, "If there is any advice I can give you it is that big homes, fancy cars, etc. don't mean a thing in life. That stuff doesn't matter at all."
Now I understand people saying is this one prison inmate worth listening to?
Well, let's listen to the other end of the spectrum.
In Philip Borough's great book, "Ahead of the Curve," which details his two years in the MBA program at Harvard University, he states the one common denominator that all the speakers had who came to address the class was that they all regretted the time they had to sacrifice away from their families because of their careers.
The billionaire Meg Whitman of EBay told the class: "To tell you the truth I would trade my entire fortune to get back the time I had to forfeit with my children because of my career."
The point of this article is this: Nothing in life can take the place or be a substitute for the love and dedication you can give to the living beings and living things you cherish most.