Good news: You’re the boss. Bad news: You’re the boss
My promotion was cause for celebration for everyone but me. Friends clinked glasses at happy hour, and though I smiled over martinis, I felt dread. I’d worked so hard for my new title, but I already crammed my art into the nooks and crannies of the occasional free evening. For a (very) mild pay raise and resume-fattening responsibility, I’d be giving up more time and energy to do work that frankly bored me. Saying so aloud seemed like spitting on my privilege.
Only one person in my life understood my ambivalence: my father. The first in his family to go to college and land a gig that required pressed shirts and briefcases, he’s prone to waxing nostalgic about his college construction job, the one he took to pay off the tuition that was supposed to give him a “better” life. Laying bricks left his body sore and his mind unfettered; he missed knowing that when he put his hammer down for the day, his life was his own.