Allied Restore - November 2017

Allied Restoration | | Call now for 24/7 immediate service: 888-860-1003 THE RESTORATION RESOURCE

MY LIFE IN 600 WORDS The Moments That Made Me

“If you take your toughest moments and convert them to fuel for your dreams, you’ll remember your hardships as speed bumps along the road to greatness.”

food stamps and government cheese, I wasn’t locked into any future except the one I created. My mom provided the inspiration; my stepfather provided the motivation. I decided that night I would never let go of my dreams. Fast forward 16 years. I was 30 years old and the vice president of a growing construction company. I was looking to hire better people. All of a sudden, the thought dawned on me that my little brother, Victor, a 10-year Navy veteran, would be a perfect addition. It wasn’t too long before Victor was operations manager. One night at dinner, another crucial moment occurred. “You know what,” we said, “we should start our own company.” And we did just that. By the end of our second year, we had grown to $2 million in revenue — easily the most money we’d ever seen.That growth, as I penned in our last issue, was the genesis for the turkey giveaways that I still do today. It was also the moment we realized that we needed business mentors to take us to the next level. So we headed off to Las Vegas for a conference. While we were there, another life- changing series of events began. One minute, we were taking notes.The

When I was 14 years old, my stepfather, Inocencio, laughed at my dreams. I earnestly expressed my desire to do great things, and he responded as if I had told him the funniest joke in the world.The fact that my aspirations were comedy to him was crushing.That night, I cried myself to sleep, wondering why he had to grow up so poor, and why I didn’t have the power to alter my future. My mother must have heard my distress, because she showed up in my room to offer an entirely different perspective. She sat at my bedside and whispered, “Mijo, puedes hacer mas con tu vida. Servimos un Dios muy poderoso. [Son, you can do more with your life. We serve a mighty God.]” Looking back on that moment, I think of it as one of the most crucial days of my life. It may have been a painful day, but it’s also a joyful memory. I didn’t know then how my life would take shape, but I knew things could be better. Although we grew up on

down the business. Even with the grief and stress I was dealing with, I knew instantly that was not an option. “There’s no fricking way I’m closing down this business,” I said, “and if my little brother were here right now, he’d tell you the same thing.” Eight years later, the business is healthier than it’s ever been. I’ve created the Passionate Life Foundation in Victor’s name to grow our charitable efforts, with which we’ve fed over 2,000 families. When I look back at these major moments in my life, I’ve realized that even the darkest days can be a source of strength going forward. We all deal with catastrophes, whether they come in the form of death, divorce, or financial hardship. What you can’t do is let these challenges beat you down and rob you of your dreams. Change is the only inevitable fact of life. But a change of mind is more powerful than anything else. If you take your toughest moments and convert them to fuel for your dreams, you’ll remember your hardships as speed bumps along the road to greatness. –O.P. Almaraz

next, I was driving Victor to the hospital. Just 14 days later, my little brother took his last breath. This was a blow unlike any I’d ever experienced. Adding insult to injury, I met with my attorney three months later, and he suggested that I close


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