You guys, it finally happened. My step-dad RETIRED. At least, he sold his shares in what was, until last week, the family business. There had been much talk of this happening over the past few years, and no action, to the point where I had stopped believing that it would ever happen. I mean, at one point in the past he even sold the business but continued managing it, and then eventually bought it back again. But this time. This time I'm pretty sure it's for keeps.
Despite his failing health, he insists that he is going to start up another business. He is already in discussions with one or more potential partners. I wish him all the best with that, and I want nothing to do with it.
Don't get me wrong. I love him. I just love him in that complicated-family-member way that can co-exist with not being able to deal with him. I'm upset by the changes at my workplace, but not because I'm going to desperately miss him. I feel sad and guilty about how relieved I feel now that I don't have to work with him anymore.
Anyway, the mixed blessing of working for family is now a thing of the past. Now I'm just another average wage slave, doing an honest day's work for an honest day's pay. I'm quite content with that.
I'm cautiously optimistic about my job security. Only time will tell. The people who bought my step-dad's shares, already partial owners of the business, were in conflict with him for years. At one point one of them started demanding that I be fired, after having accused me of something that I didn't do. I hope that I was being used impersonally as a pawn in their fight. I hope that this person does not actually hold any personal grudge against me left over from three years ago. Those were ugly days.
If only they knew the whole story. There was a time when my step-dad asked me to assist him in some shady activities to enhance his own standing in the fight. These things, had they been found out, could have gotten me into big trouble. Not only in terms of my career; but I could have potentially ended up in jail. It was a terrifying prospect.
Of course I refused, and instead of apologizing for having asked, or being understanding of my reluctance, my step-dad proceeded to lay a giant guilt trip on me for "joining forces with his enemies" or however he put it. He didn't forgive me for more than a year. It was so painful and stressful, I can't tell you.
A less scrupulous employee, unrelated to him, might have gone along with his plan, in order to earn a bonus or bank a favour. There were a lot of strong feelings in the business among many people, not just me. Some people did strenuously take my step-dad's side. I have definitely proved my determination to stay on the straight and narrow. The thing is, that all happened under the radar, and even if I told the whole story to my new bosses, why should they believe me?
I guess it's a question of whether or not they want to give me a chance. I'll have to prove myself to them starting from scratch, and I will, if they let me. I'm good value for the money. A bargain at any price! Right?