It really all started with one conversation I had about 15 months ago. My good friend Todd, who is a writer in LA, made it abundantly clear to me that my best shot at making music my CAREER was taking a leap of faith and moving to Los Angeles. “There’s just so much more here I can help you with if you’re physically here,” he told me. And that stuck with me. It reminds me of the movie Inception a little bit. You plant one little idea in someone’s head and watch it grow to become something powerful, and possibly even define them. The seed became a plant, and the plant became a garden. And here we are, a few short weeks from the launch. I’d be lying if I didn’t say my mind was almost made up instantly. A switch had been flipped and there was no going back for me. But I know I’m no longer an individual. The second I married Eva and Hux was born, the word “me” no longer existed. Yet I know how selfish this is. It seems contradictory I know, stay with me.
I have no illusion of what I’m asking of my wife and young son. My wife is leaving a job she loves and works really hard at. Honestly she’s an amazing manager of anything food related. That includes being a chef at home. But nonetheless, I’m asking her to leave behind something she loves. A secure, good paying job that has opportunity for career development because of how great she is at it. That consent didn’t come overnight and I understand why. We fought on more than one occasion about it. We talked calmly about it. She cried. I cried. And one day a few months later she said “What if?” And I knew she was in. Perhaps before she even knew. So I started the preparation and doing research into what it would actually take to make this happen. To be clear, I didn’t wear my wife down. Okay maybe I did a little :). But what I think actually happened is she saw the switch flipped. She sees how hard I work at this every week. The hours I pour in at the studio or at home in the basement writing, recording, editing, and mixing. She sees the drive in me day in, and day out. I think she finally just realized maybe this is something I had to do. And that meant she had to do it with me. This doesn’t work without her blessing on it so I’m incredibly grateful to her for taking this chance with me.
I’m also aware how homesick I’ll be, and quickly. I love my large family with all my heart. If I could move them all with me I would. This just happens to be the price of admission though. Its weighed heavy on my heart wondering how well my son will know our big, beautiful family as he grows up. It was such a blessing growing up how we did. In so many loving homes. My cousins were my first best friends. They all know that. Not to mention how great of a support my big family have all been for not only my career in music, but my new little family. They’ve been integral in helping us raise Hux thus far and we’re very thankful for all they do. My sister in particular. We leave that security blanket too. Not an easy decision, just a necessary one.
Once Eva gave her official consent somewhere around last fall, it was officially time to prepare this vessel for voyage. So I quietly put some bugs in a few peoples’ ears asking about suggestions and how to do a few things. I made phone call after phone call about financial planning and housing. Googled more than I care to mention. Got in touch with our realtor. And once I gathered a good amount of info I took it to my best friend, my father. His words mean a lot to me. If he had legitimate concerns about it I would likely put it to rest. When you’re a 32 year old still dreaming a childhood dream it takes asking someone you trust to tell you if you’re crazy or not. He voiced his concerns but ultimately said, “Go for it!” That was perhaps the final push I needed to hear to actually do it. To me, there was no turning back at that point.
Telling my family, my friends, and my music family was not particularly easy either. They all mean a great, great deal to me. And thinking of a life without them a short drive away is a life I don’t know yet. And it scares the shit out of me quite honestly. But I’ve learned a really big lesson already in all of this. Fear is not for the weak. Fear is a tool of successful people. They turn that fear into added drive. And that’s exactly what I’m doing. Fear of failure is simultaneously fear of succeeding. They cannot exist apart. I will not be the person to wonder “What if?” That I cannot live with. That one fear scares me more than all the rest combined. And that’s what has lead me here.
If you’re reading this I’d say odds are you know me pretty well and care enough to read it. And that also means I owe you a thank you. Your continued support of this dream of mine has made this possible. Your love has turned this dream of mine into a dream of ours. One I now share with my wife and son. And one I now share with you too.
I refuse to believe there’s any chance of me being unsuccessful in this venture. I know how hard I work; I know my talents, my weak spots. I know there’s people out there rooting for me and rooting against me. I want to say thanks to ALL of them. That energy and motivation just drives me further.
If there’s one thing for certain I am sure of its this;
I will never say “What if” and I will never say, “I quit”.
It’s not in me. Find your dream. Live it.
Matthew Alexander Wheatley