A Newly Minted Man of Leisure

It was the first time I had ever been fired. Well, that is not completely true. There was the one time when I was twenty-two and living in Florida. After a third week in a row of working forty-eight hours and sleeping fifteen in a three day period, I buried my phone under a pile of dirty clothes and went back to bed. My boss at Ruby Tuesday’s begrudgingly told me that he had to fire me for the no-call/no-show but that if ever I needed a reference he would be happy to help. So while technically it was not my first time being terminated, this was the first time that I did not see it coming.And I totally did not see this coming. Sure the warning signs were there. Sure I was running out of things to do, there was new management, the physical publishing industry is a sinking ship. All of these things pointed to a threat but I was a good employee and had added a lot to the value of the company. Or so I thought.The thing is I had been talking about quitting and becoming a full-time stay at home dad and getting back into writing for nearly six years but inertia is a bitch. Every time we got more money we just upped our spending and were happy with paying for help with the kids and around the house. We had become accustomed to taking the easy way out. As I look back at it, getting fired was really the only way I would ever make it happen. Our hand had to be forced. So when ZG, Mariela and I were sitting on the back stairs of our house smoking in the shock of the moment, there was a feeling of excitement and relief.

I woke up the morning after like a kid on his first day of school, wide awake before the alarm went off, slightly nervous but eager to get started. There are so many little projects around the house that need to be done. Little tasks that just never seem to get done in the few hours that were available. Everyday I would wake at 6:30, get the boys on the bus then get in the car to get ZG to work before driving across town to get to my job by 9. I would work to 4:45 because any later meant I would not be able to get to the boys by 6 which was the latest they could stay in their after school program. Then it was home to make dinner and clean up before it was 8 and time for the boys to get to bed. A couple of stories later and I was not sitting until 9 at night. By then the last thing I wanted to do was clean or change light bulbs or think about the storage room that was a wreck. Add to this a active social life, a wife and a girlfriend and you can start to see that my days were packed and really left no time for chores let alone writing. Now I am free to spend my day getting things in order, paying bills and buying stamps and getting groceries which may sound like a pain in the ass (I am sure that it will start to drag after a while) but for me this is the life I have always wanted. It is one of the ways that I show my dominance. It is my house, my castle, my little fiefdom where I can be in control and take care of the ones I love. This could be the Universe’s way of putting me back on track.

Addendum: A few thoughts five days later…

The schedule has settled in a little and I have found a great online task manager to help to structure the things I want to get done each day. I am now sitting in a coffee shop writing, truly writing again for the first time in a very long time. I know that this will not be easy. I am not a fan of things being too easy. I like the struggle, the reward that comes with overcoming a challenge far more than simply having things handed to me. In the end this is the way it is supposed to be. Like the difference between fate and Destiny (a post on that difference coming soon) this reaffirms where I should be going with my life and what I should be doing with my days. Out of all of this I am reminded how insanely fortunate I really am.

~MN
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One comment on “A Newly Minted Man of Leisure

  1. Fallen Depths says:

    I’m thrilled for you – also can’t wait to see more of your writing.

    FD

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