It’s only after we’ve discovered who we are that we’re able to understand the trials and triumphs that led us to our current position.
When I arrived in Las Vegas nearly 17 years ago, I had no money, I’d recently been kicked out of the house by my father and stepmother and I didn’t have a job.
My big sister and her family took me in, something I can never thank them enough for. If not for them I would have been living on the street, which is something I considered when my father kicked me out of the house.
Vegas, at that time, was booming and skeletons of future hotels lined the strip.
Jobs were abundant, but only to those who had experience in a casino related field, which I didn’t.
It was before the corporate takeover of Las Vegas, when employees were treated well and they were looked at as people and not a number on a spreadsheet.
Each year I’ve been in Vegas has brought something new.
The first year I married my wife, the second we bought our house, but children, it took us five years until we were blessed with children, but that didn’t come easily either, much like finding work now.
Our first pregnancy ended in a miscarriage, but nearly a year later our son was born.
His life has been filled with all the things he could want, and possibly we’ve been too liberal with buying things, but when our daughter arrived 6 years later we learned how hard parenting could be.
Born 6 weeks early and weighing 3lbs 10 oz, she lived in an incubator for the first month of her life, but unlike some preemies, she’s been healthy otherwise.
Around the time our daughter was born, our life was in shambles. The economy crashed, we lost the house we’d loved, but everything has a silver lining, or so I’m told.
The house we’ve lived in since our daughter’s birth is bigger, but with that there were other things we were unable to do.
Somewhere along the way of being a good father and husband I forget to take care of myself and stopped caring about who I was and worried more about what others thought of me. This became evident last year when I suffered a breakdown and nearly took my own life.
For the past year I’ve been working on me and because of that I’ve tried to be better as a dad and husband.
When we leave Las Vegas I know I’ve made mistakes in the last 17 years, but for the last 16 months I’ve been trying to make up for those.
My journey of discovering who I am has been ongoing for longer than I can say, but for little over a year I’ve come to grips with where I’ve screwed up and where I’ve prospered.
I’m looking forward to discovering more about who I am and who I’ll never be again.
I’ll miss parts of our life in Las Vegas, but it’s time to start a new journey, a new life and see where the next adventure goes.