I’m a recovering workaholic. I loved to work as we say in the Caribbean like “man love rum.” Even now, everyday activities are treated like projects. From doing laundry to Christmas shopping there is a completion schedule, budget, progress report and the occasional brainstorming session. Eleven (11) years of my life were spent invested in my last two jobs: eight (8) for one and three (3) for the other. Depressingly my love of work was unrequited and I will not intentionally make that mistake again. Quite simply, I don’t want to be married to a job. I want to be married to a person. My next job will not become the main focus of my life, life will.
You’re probably thinking, big talk; but when that time comes, she’s going to be pulled back into the rat race hook, line and sinker. Heck, she won’t be pulled. She’s going to dive right in! I certainly hope not. This time away from the rat race has given me valuable introspection. I remember shooting the breeze with some co-workers once. It was well past time to go home but I was trying to finish up some reports. One of the guys asked, “Isn’t your boyfriend or husband wondering where you are?” Before I could respond, one of the others piped up, “Marsha doesn’t have a boyfriend! She’s married to the job.” I was beyond embarrassed and tried to disagree. Then he went on to support his statement by recounting how many times I had worked late that week alone. Red-faced and soundly defeated, I couldn’t say anything. Talk about a reality check, which was, by the way, ignored.
Father God however, always has the final say and gave me the ultimate reality check. I had no choice but to leave home and then the job left me. It was an amicable divorce citing irreconcilable differences. The lesson was a big one and I burned it into my brain. If you dropped dead on the job right now, they’d have your replacement ready to start by day’s end. The only people who would really miss you are your family. I’ve seen it happen with my own eyes. A young accounting clerk collapsed with pain during lunch and by three o’clock, her desk was occupied by a new employee. Speaking personally, I can count on one hand, how many co-workers from my last job actually miss me. Only one anticipates my return to Trinidad and hopes I’ll rejoin their ranks. I flew out, I was replaced and the corporate world turns without me. My replacement is probably using the company laptop I sent back to Trinidad. Maybe the work I left behind is considered invaluable; or was thrown out as inferior and my tenure looked upon with disdain. It’s in the past now and I’m preparing for my future where the balance between work and play will be far more agreeable.
I also hope to find a dude, who will be my only dude; and I will be his only dudette. I’ll promise to love, comfort, honour and keep my dude; for better or worse, for richer or poorer (please Lord, richer), in sickness and in health. I will forsake all others, being faithful to my dude (even if he gets bald and fat) so long as we both shall live. Amen.