From hero to zero

[I may be the luckiest guy in the world, but even I have moments when I can’t figure out how to get out of a maze. That’s what this post is: my way of looking for an exit.]

For the past two years, my new job has been rough on my ego. More like, crushed what little I have of one. I had planned on being higher up in the food chain when I was hired, with more say over the direction of the company and my own path – a righthand man to the VP.  Ah, but he went and got himself canned the day before I started. Nice, as he was the reason I joined.

Luckily the new company still wanted me. And I’ve treated the last two years as a learning experience with a certain quote ringing round in my empty head: You’re not who you think you are, you’re who others think you are. 

Oh, how I’ve learned that lesson – and many others.

A headstrong group of individuals on the team is a chummy bunch and blocks others from being part of important decisions. It’s a fan club of 3 using the Hollywood style of complimenting each other (you’re great; no, you’re greater). I’m living a life of exile thanks to this inexperienced trio, which ironically I was supposed to have some creative control over.

The deepest cut happened when a replacement manager, who is a pal of the threesome, joined, reinforcing my downward trajectory from hero to zero. If there is a silver lining, I’m not alone in my frustration with the Hollywood 3 or the new manager and his weak management style. But as good as it feels to know others suffer too, it doesn’t grant me input and influence in projects.

I’m shooting to live at least another 3.5 years to see my daughter graduate from high school. How I’m going to fill my time between now and then (other than time spent in the hospital and doctors’ offices) is the question that haunts me.

It’s impossible not to ask: What if?

What if I didn’t have cystic fibrosis? This frigging nightmare disease cuts into every decision of my life. Some might just take it easy and collect a check. Or find another job, which isn’t easy to do with cf. I need to feel like I have value and I’m spending my time well. But it’s a heavy load when cf and others control my destiny and I can’t figure out how to move forward.

7 thoughts on “From hero to zero

  1. Geez, now I feel bad about calling you Hollywood. Anyway, it sucks what you’re going through. Wish I could help you find a great job but who’s not to say you wouldn’t find these cliques elsewhere too.

    I had a friend get hired as a firefighter and at the end of his 6 month probation they let him go without giving him a reason. He can only suspect it’s because he didn’t fit in. The firefighters on his shift were mostly 10 years his younger and they were a tight clique. I know that doesn’t help but it goes to show there are cliques in every industry, huh? Hang in there, Hollywood. We have similar goals, but I have 5.5 years to go. And my transplant is not going as well as planned.

  2. Hi, Tara,

    I’m so upset your transplant isn’t going as planned. I always think I can’t hate cf more than I already do but then you tell me that. Sending healing vibes and hoping it gets on track for you. Really, just wishing the best for you.

    The name Hollywood is fine. I like it and have always thought it was funny.

    Thinking of you and asking the universe to grant you another 55 years. Thanks for writing.


  3. I feel bad for you my friend but you have a strong way of enduring. I know it can be really tough in knowing you have a lot to offer a job if only there wasn’t so much politicizing going on not being given the opportunity to contribute. Ultimately, it’s their loss.

    Just hope it gets better for you.

    • Hi, Larry, you are too kind as always. Thank you. I think I complained too much in that post. Sometimes, the wheels just come off and I can’t think straight. Hope the pups are doing well and you’ve got them towing the line.

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