JJ is here!!!! 🙂
I cannot put into words how amazing it is to be a dad. It’s made me a million times more motivated and I have fallen even more in love with my wife Erica. She was my hero before, but now she’s my SUPERHERO!! So proud of her. She made Batman look like a wimp during labor and delivery. 😉
I began writing this when we found out we were pregnant. I’ve been waiting for his arrival to actually publish it. I’ve added a few things, but I wanted to keep it “in the moment” of the unknown. The intensity of the feelings I was feeling was like no other. One day JJ will hopefully read this and know that Erica and I love him more than anything and that people are what matters in life.
If you ever reach this moment in life please understand why I’m afraid to announce your arrival to the world. However, I’m absolutely overjoyed. 🙂
One day you’ll be here. I’d like to think that I’ve done everything I can to grow up and be the father you deserve. I sit here hoping that I will be. The good news is your mother is the most beautiful and intelligent human being I’ve ever met and will EVER meet. Please do not forget that. She is the key to everything wonderful in my life.
Unfortunately, you will hate our guts and spend a lot of time in your room. The good news is the window opens pretty easily and you’ll be able to escape whenever you want. I want to protect you from the world. At times it can be a terrible place where awful people live. However, you have to fight against your natural human instinct to only look out for yourself. That is no way to live. That is no way to succeed.
You have to live by a code of honor and loyalty. People will abandon and lie to you. Some people will pretend to love and care for you. However, in time you might find that they’ll never care about you as much as they care about themselves. This is EXPERIENCE speaking. Fight hard. Never surrender. It is going to hurt. You’ll want to forsake trust and love entirely. NEVER stop loving and caring for the people around you. Love others ALWAYS. Take pride in it!
I met your mother through a wonderful friend of ours. I was dedicated to being single and working until I died alone in my office. Career first and everything second. The only family I would have would be my clients and I was happy with that. They STILL are the foundation and livelihood for everything for our family. It is BECAUSE of them taking a risk on your dad that we have the ability to support you and give you the opportunities to succeed in life. I love them and without them we are nothing. Remember that. We owe them so much. Never forget where we came from. Never lose sight of the fact that 80-90 hour work weeks for the last 9 years has given us the opportunity to stay home and enjoy your arrival. Mom and I are having so much fun simply being near you. You are our little miracle.
You are surrounded by a family much bigger than most. You are loved. Treat our family and friends with respect and love. Dare greatly to care more about them than anyone else ever could. Nothing else in my life mattered enough to adjust and adapt before I met your mom. However, your mother simply being herself helped create the greatest “me” that could ever be. I am James Schleicher and I am beyond what I could have been without her. She is the reason you and I will be capable of such amazing things. Her sacrifice and support for us allows us to be the men we were born to be. Love her. Hug her and kiss her. She is our hero and compass for happiness.
This seems “emo” and a “Schleicher” thing to do. One day this will all make sense. I like to joke about the moment your mother met me her heart grew “three times that day.” She is simply amazing. I hope you take after her. She’s beautiful, hard-working, and her mind is UNMATCHED. Those same features and characteristics are 100% of you.
I’m a big nerd and I’ve been watching “Gotham”, “The Flash” and “Arrow.” It’s all T.V. I don’t know what will be cool when you’re grown up. Either way I’ll think it’s “not like when I was a kid.” That is for the best of course. We must all adapt. READ BOOKS MY CHILD. READ BOOKS THAT ARE ABOUT SELF MASTERY, BUSINESS, AND LEADERSHIP. Everything else is a distraction from achieving everything you want in life. (There will be time to vegetate, read books for pleasure, and play video games or whatever makes your brain numb when it’s time to take a break from being productive.) Always be mastering yourself. WHO you are is what matters. What you do is replaceable. Take pride in evolving every day into a better, more fun, and more focused version of you.
When you arrive I’m going to be a giant piece of mush. When I meet you I hope you understand I know what I’m talking about 99.9% of the time. The KEY to all success and to your wonderful life is challenging me and the rest of the world on the 0.01%. If you do not think outside the box and if you do not think about how the “current way” to do things can be done better than you are doomed.
Challenge yourself and the status quo. You are the decisions you make. It’s never someone else’s fault you failed or succeeded. Embrace the one life you have been given. You only get one shot. Make it count. You know in your gut and in your heart what is right for you and what you want out of life. Your gut is always right. Don’t be the person THEY want you to be. Be the person you were born to be. Be Joshua James. He will ALWAYS be good enough. You are JJ and that is all JJ will ever need.
I Love you my son. Love your mother and your grandmother, grandfather, aunt, uncles and everyone who you are lucky enough to know and love. People are our oxygen. People are what matters. Be a human first. Be your club, group, sport, industry, etc. second.
Your mother changed my life for the better. YOU and your mother will change my life for the BEST.
Never stop being better and being your BEST.
One day this will all make sense. 🙂
Your Loving Father,
James Ross Schleicher