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My Kids Ruined My Career

May 16, 2016

From 1996 to 2005, my career was really hot and taking off. I was on the regular promotion cycle and everybody at work thought I was on the up and up. In my first job out of college they said I was “partner material” and in my next company they called me “a next generation leader.” I worked hard and I had momentum. I was smart and savvy. I was a mover and a shaker. I made things happened, but then “it” happened. I had kids and immediately they began the process of screwing up this thing I had built called “a career!”

First, my wife brought my daughter to my work to “show her off” and the little girl cried the entire hour, then had a nice “blow-out” right in the office. It was disastrous. Then there was the conference call that I took from my house one weekend when the company was going live with a new system. When it was finally my turn to speak and share my well-prepared insights with the broad group of at least 50 key people in “management,” my daughter bolted into the room, jumped on my lap and said “Hi Dad. Can I give you a Cinderella sticker?” Everyone on the call heard it I am sure, but nobody laughed, and I totally lost my train of thought. That was so awful.

Then my son came along (aka #2). I once had this key meeting with a significant, influential executive. It seemed to go fine, but after the meeting I noticed that I had huge crusty booger on my starched white dress shirt, evidently from holding my running nose son that morning. I was so humiliated. After he was born, my stamina for working long hours was challenged. Additionally, my ability to sleep, think clearly and articulate my thoughts to anyone became substantially impaired. I started getting to work “last” and leaving “first” because of doctor and dentist appointments, dance and gymnastic classes, church activities and sports, not to count all of the days I had to stay home when they were sick, or I was sick from a nasty virus that THEY brought into MY house.

I am telling you, I had such potential, huge potential actually. I could have been so powerful and made so much money by now; I really could have. I would have been a partner or an executive for sure, and I was on that track, but my kids absolutely ruined it all. They destroyed my plans and my career will never recover. Right now, some young business “dude” or “dudette” with no kids is working with brilliant, high-powered people and solving critical, complex issues. Additionally, he or she is driving a high-end beamer and living on the extreme nice end of town. That was supposed to be me, but it is not, and it never will be now. Nothing has worked well with my work since I had kids, and they are totally to blame for what I can only describe as a major “career derail.”

Oh, and to top it off - I feel more satisfied, mature, spiritual, rewarded, excited, peaceful and loved than I ever have in my life. My boss at work told me he thinks that means something called “happy.”

Those durn kids.

Until next week,













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