We all need a little rescuing from time to time.  I never thought however that when I rescued our two dogs, StuPac and Biggie, that they would be the ones to rescue me.  

Before Stu got home, I wanted to let him know that he was special and that he was wanted.  I made him a raised dog feeder.  After posting to social media, I got a lot of interest and requests but didn't think anything of it.  I made another one when we rescued Biggie shortly thereafter.  Same response on social media.  Then I made and donated a couple to a local pet shelter as fundraising items in a silent auction and it wasn't until then that I knew I had something special!  I was a corporate executive that was a user and taker.  Now I am making up for it by making and giving back...  I reflect at the table saw, I atone with my sander... Now I am a woodworker and here is my story.  

I felt trapped.  I felt trapped in a career that I loved but required a lot of my time.  I felt trapped to the glitz and the glamour of life.  I felt trapped to a family I was an observer to. I felt trapped by the need to keep up with the Jones'.  I felt trapped by the need to "succeed."

I worked hard for what I have.  I grew up in NYC and went to the best high school.  I wanted a big college experience so I studied business at the UW-Madison.  I wanted to travel the world so I joined the US Air Force.  I wanted a career I could be proud of and that I would love, I had it.  I have been to over 60 countries.  I have experienced amazing things that most dream of.  I traveled a ton... too much.  I had an amazing, top performing team that I spend more time with than my family.  I have the houses, boats, cars, toys and family to show for it.  I thought I was living the dream, making success, creating options.

Then one day, my company unexpectedly dissolved my position and a career I had been so successfully building... was only... experiencing a mild hiccup because I was going to get back on the horse... find something bigger and better and write my own ticket!  I got to spend more time at home while I was on the hunt, interviewing, freelance consulting and... being at home.  I began to notice things, I bean to realize that I didn't even know what I didn't know about my family.  I spent more time with my son.  I spend more time with my wife.  I spent more time thinking.  I spent more time living... and I loved it.  I found myself volunteering at my son's school, and eating lunches in the cafeteria with him.  I found myself enjoying being a partner in house hold responsibilities.  I found myself enjoying more time with my wife.  Days on the job hunt turned to weeks and weeks turned to months.  I was slowly trading $400 tomahawk ribeyes for cafeteria meat and loving it.  I was slowly trading platinum statuses for bedtime reading with my son.  I was slowly trading room service and turndowns for being a partner in life to my wife.  My wife, a superhero in her own right, who was able to manage the household, raise our son and manage a very successful career in biotech during my time "away."  I still don't know how she did it... but I am committed to finding out.  

During this time we rescued our dogs.  I was home and able to give the dogs the attention they needed during the transition.  I found myself walking 10-15 miles a day in the the dead of the WI winters because they weren't able to be walked together.  A man does a lot of swearing and thinking on those walks.  A lot of thinking.  I wanted a career that would challenge me but not take me away from what I just re-discovered.  I wanted an career that would allow us to maintain our lifestyle but not have to sacrifice living it.  I spent time making things for my son and finishing honey do list items that were promised and long over due.  I started to build things for our home, because I enjoyed spending time in it.  I found and grew a love for rescued wood. Wood from trees that grow in cities that would end up in landfills when the city cuts them down. Wood that has a more intense grain pattern because it grows in the strife of urban streets.  I started to make cutting boards, dog feeders, furniture, kendamas with it... I gave them to teachers, friends and family as gifts.    I realized that for so long I was paid to work with my mind and had forgotten the simple joy of creating with my hands.  

My wife and a friend told me that I should start to sell my wares.  Start my own business.  Y'all are crazy I said.  Its a passion not a career.  There are no benefits or perks!  But now, here I am, owner of Rescued Woodworks.  I have the best benefits... I get to spend more time with my family.  I get to be the father I want to be and the husband I need to be.  I have perks for days...  secret handshakes, being the cool dad on the block, cafeteria lunches, having a happy wife.  I get to give back, to contribute.  It's not enough but its a start.  

We all need a little rescuing from time to time...