At the age of 10, my father passed away suddenly from a heart attack.
It was a devastating and scary time. I remember wondering how we would go on without him. How would our lives change? My mother was literally forced overnight to become the “breadwinner” for the family. She was driven by her fear and uncertainty of the future. She was also driven by her resolve to provide a secure future for me and my two brothers. Not knowing how she would sustain a comfortable lifestyle for us (and how she would provide for our future) created an urgency within her. During my childhood, I watched her become a determined, ambitious woman who was focused on protecting us from financial (and other) insecurities – though she faced many.
As I reached high school, I began helping with some of the hardships our family faced, like caring for my severely learning disabled brother. His disabilities only created more questions about the future, and I wanted to assure him however I could. I wanted him to know he would be taken care of.
By the time I was a senior in high school, I knew I wanted to pursue a profession where I could help people protect themselves, defend themselves, and secure themselves from the uncertainties of life.
To be honest, financial planning was not my first thought. Instead, I went to law school. But I quickly learned that as an attorney, I wasn’t able to help people in the way I wanted to. In addition, the practice of law was too “adversarial” for me.