Not much has changed. I’m still Lucky Jordan. I still work at Sweinhart Electric. I say this not to convey a sense of monotony but to demonstrate how fully consumed my parents and I are with our small businesses (trust me—nothing about running them bores us). Between the three of us, we probably invest some 200 hours – well, at least 200 hours – each week into the growth and prosperity of our companies. It’s long, hard work; for my parents, it’s been longer and harder than I could ever imagine.
Our new shop as of 2/1/16. We doubled the size of our workspace and brought all our companies under one roof.
Every Sunday night gets a little tense around my house. But it’s not what you think. My parents don’t cherish the weekend because they get to take time off or forget about work for a couple of days. They love the weekend because that’s when they receive the least calls, interruptions, emergencies, etc. and they can get more work done than usual. I always took this awe-inspiring drive and work ethic for granted; I knew my parents worked hard but I’d never experienced it in the way I do now. My appreciation for their sacrifices has grown tenfold over the past 8 months working alongside them and it’s amazing to see how it has affected my life – not only in the opportunities I’ve been given but also in the character I’ve inherited.
A completely candid photo of my dad and I getting “hands-on” with a generator.
Over the past few years of my life, I’ve really come to understand a pattern in my family. Through my challenges in high school and college applications, through watching my sister unyieldingly pursue her interests and lead various organizations and events, and through seeing my parents triple the size of our business in just 7 years, I’ve realized that my family has an unnatural propensity for passion and responsibility – and probably also biting off more than we can chew. Whenever I think of this, it reminds me of something my grandfather (mom’s side) told me when I was 16. He was trying to explain the legacy of hard work in my family as he recounted his and his father’s experiences of being Indian immigrants in America. In broken English, he told me about his father working for 69 cents a day and eventually himself working for 59 cents an hour, both doing backbreaking word in the fields of central California and both saving every penny for their family to have the best opportunities possible. We’ve come a long way since then but that attitude still pervades our everyday lives. I’ll never live up to what my ancestors did for our family; I’ll certainly never come close to what my parents have done for me. The best I can strive for is to carry on that legacy in all my future endeavors – something I wholeheartedly intend to do.
My grandfather (mom’s side). A man for whom I have unending respect and gratitude.