Love Self

A Life of Excellence, part 1

Photo by Gustavo Fring on

When I was growing up, I spent considerable time around my great-grandmother. One thing about having a perfect house is that no such thing exists. However, many people do what they can to get it as close to perfect as possible. For her, it was about creating an atmosphere of excellence, the type of home a person wants to live in. She even kept some of the plastic on newer furniture to keep it from becoming stained. It was a beautiful living room, but almost no one was allowed to sit in it.

Some people are under the assumption that it is all about having an extravagant home. It isn’t. It’s more about taking care of what you have. My grandmother, her daughter, took it to a crazy level! Sorry Meme! Her and I moved furniture all around the room, and sometimes even outside the house so she could do a deep clean. I used to get so mad at her for doing this. One night, in the middle of winter, I ran out to a field in the backyard and took my shirt off. I screamed into the chilly night air. I don’t know if anyone around heard and thought I was going to turn into a werewolf or not. But it did the trick at cooling me down and I returned to the house like nothing had happened.

In all these things, I saw the need for assistance and recognized that I had energy and strength. After doing a small chore, I was rewarded with a quarter, a dollar, or even more depending on the task. The moment the first transaction occurred; a young entrepreneur was born. I was so excited to find out that with effort, I could convert my time and energy into money. I searched everywhere, looking for opportunities. One of the most ridiculous things I performed as part of my housework was tightening the screws on light switch and receptacle covers. Nonetheless, it was part of my routine inspection to keep a perfect house. I also vacuumed floors, dusted, cleaned mirrors, the kitchen, and the bathroom.

My brother and friends taunted me, saying that I was the favorite grandson. That was their reasoning behind why I had a little money and was treated different. However, I think by doing so much for others, I gained a lot of respect and admiration among the adults. Meanwhile, the other boys played around all the time and never did any work. I learned early on that people will often be jealous of what you have but are unwilling to do what you did to get the same for themselves.

When I got old enough, I started to take care of lawns. At first, it was pulling weeds out of flower gardens. Later, I learned how to mow the grass. It was just a push mower at first, but it opened up my skillset. I learned how to run a weedwhacker also. Before long, I searched the neighborhood for other prospects. I looked for any type of work that others did not want to do. One thing my family tried to instill in me along the way was a spirit of excellence. It all started when my mother taught me, “If you are going to do something, do it right!”

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