But We’re Happy Now?

I decided to quit my job. I thought on it for a couple of weeks. I floated it past my buddies. Then I called two “colleagues” with my firm decision. I thought about what I was going to say and I have to admit, it was perfectly positive. There is no way that I would leave with bad feelings. It would be the best quitting EVER.

My boss is without a doubt my favorite boss ever. She’s a muckety muck in her field and has a vision that can’t be beat. Because I like her personally, I care about supporting her in that work. What I like about her as la jefe is that she’s interested in allowing people their own process. I don’t do well being told what to do, when to do it, how to do it (just ask my dad). She’s never even bothered to define my job.

The job has no tangible benefits – no health, no retirement, no nuthin’. There’s no money in the job. There’s no upward mobility. There’s no prestige. It can be frustrating as all get out. In fact, it feels an awful lot like my VISTA days. I’ve been pushing this rock uphill for two years now. My family is the lucky recipient of my lack of ambition and my abundance of vision. It’s time for me to “get a real job.”

The quitting went well. We had a normal meeting. It was all good news. Things are taking a turn for the better with the project. YAY! And then it was time for me to quit. “My working on this project and your paying for it out of pocket is enabling the University to not have to act while simultaneously hurting our families.” Doesn’t that sound great? It’s so much better than some of the lesser charitable things I was thinking.

She looked at me like I kicked her kitten, agreed with me that the University is taking advantage, and complimented my work. My resolve weakend. Did I mention that I admire this woman and she’s been a great boss for seven years (two years on this project and five years in a previous position)? “What would happen if I left?” I said thinking that she would say a position would be created and the University would do a spousal hire as were the whisperings. Instead she said, “Nothing.” We are being noticed for the work we’ve done and money is finally coming in, she pointed out. “But the bones are here for great things and the fun part of fleshing it out comes next,” I said thinking about the board of advisors we’ve hornswaggled into working with us and remembering what fun it is seeing them. Then with less resolve, “I’d be leaving things on good footing and ready for blastoff and the spousal hi….”

So I stayed, releived that I didn’t have to cancel the kids’ music lessons, sell the car, clip coupons. Did you realize the economy is tanking or has tanked? Thank God I have a job – even one with no benefits. We may be in a depression, but we’re happy now. Right? Yes, we’re happy because I have the best job ever.

4 thoughts on “But We’re Happy Now?

  1. John says:

    this child was so perfect, I never did have to ever once tell her what to do, when or how to do it. She always knew naturally the exact right thing to do.

    Yeah, you may think that’s bs, but it’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

    Her Dad

  2. Anonymous says:

    I told Derek the same thing. I need a real job. I cited the benefits of health insurance, steady paycheck, no more homemade gifties, extra money for vacations, etc. Here is what he told me:

    1. Who is going to get the Kiddos afterschool?
    2. Who is going to take the girls to the library and help them with the 35 ginourmous projects they are assigned?
    3. who is going to monitor internet/Wii/homework?
    4. who is gonna run all my dumb errands? Like taxes/llc/cdl/speeding tickets?
    5. You won’t be happy unless you teach what you are doing, and there aren’t any Native American Regalia Classes I know of. and who will teach the girls how to make regalia?
    6. I know the profit margin is small when you spend 100$ on feathers and sell a fan for 150, but that is still 50 dollars!

    7. I’d rather be broke if you are happy at home. If I can’t be there, then you should at the very least be happy in your work.

    I may have cried and snuffled a bit, but I am still working on regalia.

    A job you love has a huge payoff for the whole famdamily. And you and me are lucky enough to know it.

    ~Tracy (she has the best hubby in OK)

  3. Rebecca Ballenger says:

    Right, Dad, it was the right thing for me to hang out with Angela at age 11 until 10 p.m. on a school night then bike home in the dark across town without ever telling you where I was. Let’s stick to your story though.

    Tracy, next time Derek leaves for work, I’ll sit by the curb with you and the wee boy and wait for him to return.

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