I have previously alluded to the day I would inform my father (with whom I have a solid, albeit occasionally tricky) relationship about this whole Get A Grip thing. That day? was Friday.
It needed to happen, because the next day we were all going to a party, and people would be there who knew about Get A Grip, and I could not run the risk of him finding out from someone besides me. People were going to talk about it. Lots of people know about it, but it was time for my father to know the truth about my life and how I was spending my time.
It was time to come out of the closet to my folks.
It started as most of our visits do. “So,” my stepmom asked, “What’s new?” I took a deep breath and I told them that we needed to have a conversation about work. Dad asked if I was having problems with work again?
“No, not again. It’s ongoing. It’s not going to get better, I don’t think.” I went on to describe the environment, which isn’t a bad environment, necessarily, it’s just not the right place for me. I’m not my true self at work, and the stress of it is causing problems in other areas of my life. I’m not happy, and I deserve to be. So a few months ago, I started exploring my options. Experimenting, if you will, with alternatives to the mainstream life I was leading. And I have discovered a new path that really is putting some joy back into my life.
It was my father’s worst-case scenario for my career choices. One of his children wanting to leave the fold and be something else? And leave a pension and benefits? Our people don’t work for ourselves. We are hard workers, yes, but we work for somebody. Not “clients”, and by the way, what sort of people will you be dealing with? Who doesn’t know how to clean a house? Who will hire you? Your friends? What happens when you run out of friends? You might as well be a goddamn insurance salesman.
Trying to explain internet marketing to my father is like….. trying to explain internet marketing to my father. He is of the generation that still writes a check at the grocery store, and prefers to do business in person, face to face. The internet is for email and tracking down classic cars and evidently people also put dirty pictures on it (such a funny story, the day my father became aware of this phenomenon), but to depend on it for your livelihood? Does not compute (HA! Compute. That’s a joke, son.).
In the end, and as it stands now, he’s supportive of this new alternative lifestyle I’m trying to put together. I’m pretty sure he thinks it’s just a phase, and I’ll grow out of it, but he’s on board. He’s got my back unconditionally, as ever. He knows that I’m not going to do anything that puts our ability to keep a roof over our heads at risk. He wants me to be happy, and he knows that when I stand my ground on a big decision that I know he doesn’t like, I mean business.
This is me, out of my very organized closet, standing my ground. I mean business.