The man pictured above is my best friend. I know this sounds cheesy but my dad is my best friend since I only have 2.67 friends that don’t understand me as much as he does. My dad and I have this routine we established when I was 8 and it consists of spending every Sunday afternoon together. That may sound boring but it is actually fun when you’re with a 50-year-old man who acts as if he’s a teenage girl himself.
This past weekend, I spent a lot of time with my dad and I listened to him as he reflected on his life. We were at the Sacred Space in Summerland having the free tea they give out to customers and he began to tell me the story I have heard at least 4579243 million times.
My dad was born in Mexico where he was brought up in a very poor family. His mom, my grandmother, was a single parent with no financial support. He grew up with tangerines and animal crackers being his Christmas gifts. Eventually when he was about 13 years old he came to the U.S. where he lived with his brother for a short period of time. Living in the U.S. was a challenge since he had no familial support or experience with the English language. Around his 17th birthday he began living on his own and unfortunately, some nights were spent with no roof over his head.
He graduated from Santa Barbara High School and after high school he began to work for some local contractors. He started from the very bottom of this craft and worked his way up until he felt confident enough to start his own company. In 1999, he founded M Manzo Construction and he began to take on his own tasks.
This is the story he tells me whenever I am feeling discouraged within my personal life. My dad is someone I look up to because he started from nothing and he worked hard to get what he wanted. If he did it, then anyone can do it. He faced and still faces a lot of racial prejudice since some feel at first as if he’s incapable of producing quality work due to his appearance and background. As I have gotten older I have been able to relate to my dad since I often experience people questioning me and my abilities due to my background. It’s people like my dad who encourage me and motivate me to never give up on what I want. Do you have anyone that inspires you within your life?