David Paul Krug

Essays on the Meaning of Life

The Greatest Lesson In Life

“Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” ― Steve Jobs

I’ve probably been more inspired by the words of Steve Jobs than by his technology. I sit at this computer, a Mac by the way and I wonder about the future. Not my future — the future of my children. The lessons I will be able to impart upon them. I remember back fondly with love of my father who taught me more than anything with his time, and devotion. His time. We spent many weekends together in the early morning hours, and the late evenings. He would be working and I would be sitting around him annoying him for certain.

But being there he managed to pass onto me the magic of creating something. I saw him pursuing his passions, his goals, and following his heart and to this day it inspires me. I learned by his example. My father and I are very different. And yet at the same time very much the same.

When I was only 19 he told me to pursue with my whole heart something I believed in. I never stopped. And although my life has taken me down many paths. I believe that the most important part of our lives is doing what we were created to do. And each of us has an individual calling. It is part of our life’s calling to find out what that is.

As I have undertaken the life of a father I realize how important it is to instill in my own children the desire to pursue their life’s passions. As I enter the next phase of my life I look for ways to empower my children to grow up with the mindset that no path is the right path. And to show them the path I have taken and why it has given me a life of happiness and joy.

But I completely recognize that my life is not for everyone. It has been a hard and grueling road at times. I have had substantial heart aches, and made some very difficult life decisions.

The Embers of Healing

My family abandoned me, or was taken from me. I had 2 sets of parents and spent my teen years in a condemned and abusive boarding school. It all felt like a hurricane. My young life. In order to ‘escape’ I sought acceptance from people who didn’t know how to accept me. I sought love from people who were unable to love me. I hitchhiked, I traveled, I started businesses, I partied, I did anything but remember my past. Even as I got farther from my past it still stayed so close to me. It followed me even if the wounds had healed.

I sought help, but it was always temporary. Until I met a shaman.

When I was living in Mexico I decided to visit a shaman. And during one of our rituals I was sitting at the edge of a great lake alone. And behind me was my grandmother who I only met once in my life and as a small child. And she never said a word. But placed a burning ember on my forehead and in this ember was a great message.

That message was that on the other side of my fear was healing. But I had to risk everything to get there. And literally give up everything. All the relationships I spent over a decade building. That I would have to cross this great water alone. That I might have to die a thousand lives in order to find what my soul was looking for. And I might never achieve it if I didn’t believe it. That fear was enough to kill me, to destroy me. But that true hope was enough to carry me to the other side. But I had to make the choice. To die. To risk everything just once.

12 months later I boarded an airplane to cross the great ocean where I met my beautiful wife. And we had our beautiful daughter Sofia.

Somehow in crossing the ocean, and risking everything… I gained everything. The pain and suffering of my past life are merely part of the great story of getting where I needed to be to become a father. Fatherhood was the burning embers. Unconditional love was what I had to learn to give away in order to be healed. In learning to love my daughter, I also heal my own wounds, and break the cycles of pain that have existed for generations in my family.

When I wake up in the morning and see her smile I realize how amazing my life is. That in becoming a father I recognize that we are merely part of a greater story of humanity, and the miracle of life.

“What is life? It is the flash of a firefly in the night. It is the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset.” – Blackfoot