I posted a video on The Loop of Harry Chapin singing “Cats in the Cradle” yesterday and received a lot of feedback from friends wondering if everything was okay. It is, but it does make you think.
“Cats in the Cradle” is such a poignant song, especially if you’re a parent. I have two kids – a daughter who is 19 and a son who is 17. I missed a lot of their childhood because of the amount I worked and in a lot of ways I regret that.
I say “in a lot of ways” because I needed to work and I have an overwhelming desire to succeed and be the best at what I do. I think in that respect, I have succeeded, but with every success comes a failure. For me it was the time missed with my kids and my wife.
We are taught to work hard and go after our dreams, but we are also warned to pay attention to what matters in life. For the majority of people, that’s family. Unfortunately, I only went after the dreams without heeding the warnings.
I am often asked for advice by young writers – those with young families who are just starting out in the business. My best advice is to strive to be the best without paying the steep price that I did.
I have an incredibly great relationship with my kids. I am doing my best to make up for the time I lost and it’s working. I’m thankful for that.