A Legacy of Independence

Gary Wojciechowski
MDI Contributor

I am looking back at my grandfather.

He immigrated from Poland to the middle of northeast Saskatchewan where he bought a quarter section of land that was all trees. He had to chop down the trees and build himself a cabin. After that, he had to rip out the roots and make the land farm-able. His tools would have been hand tools and plows pulled by a horse. He lived off the land, found a wife and raised a family. A total of 10 children, four which died as infants and six who lived long and productive lives.

My father served in the army as a prison guard in WW2 and later took over the farm.

It was hard for him as well. Times changed. However, he was fiercely independent, creative and made it work come hell or high water. 

I too inherited that legacy. Some would call it stubbornness.

Looking back at my life, I never worked for a wage or salary for more than a week, maybe two? I preferred to make my own way, if it meant working on commission, or scrapping by without work, or being in business for myself.

Even as a taxi driver, I owned my own cab. And later I found my own success with investing. I was always determined to be my own man, find my own way, even if that wasn’t always the easiest path. But as they say, if you want an easy life you must be willing to do what is hard or else your life will be hard.

I can see that independent streak in me. I find my own way, be it easy or be it hard, it will be my way. 

My legacy, in the end, will be my stories, my life struggles, triumphs, lessons, laughs, loves, realizations, truths. The rest won’t matter, for in the end I will be gone, repeat. 

All of us alive here today are here because we are strong; we’re survivors. 

Don’t forget that. Don’t waste your life. Stand for what you believe, and carry on.

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