Thursday, September 27, 2007

What I know now....

is that it is okay to say, NO, every once in a while! I'm not talking about the peer pressure kind of no. I'm talking about taking on extra responsiblities. I'm still not great about it. I'm constantly taking on extra work for myself even though sometimes my head is already about to explode.

I've always been like this. It isn't so much that I like helping out as much as I just want to see it done right, so I do it myself. Even if that something means reroofing the house. Okay, maybe that's extreme but my husband has started locking up his tools.

I couldn't wait to turn 16 and get my first job. I was a cashier at a hardware store. It was a great job and I had tons of fun. But they soon realized that out of the gaggle of teenagers they had hired, I was the most responsible (Trust me, this wasn't saying much!). So I soon got the honor (I use this term loosely because there was no raise involved) of becoming the weekend bookkeeper. This was in a time before the huge superstores like Lowes, Menards, and The Home Depot. Most weekend mornings I was surrounded by over sixty thousands dollars, mostly cash. I think about it now and realize the owner must have been out of his mind to trust a sixteen-year-old with all this responsibility.

But I was cool because I got to sit in the office for three hours to finish the bookkeeping and talk to my boyfriend on the phone while doing it. Unfortunately, it also meant that I had to be there EVERY single weekend, Saturday and Sunday both. I can remember going out practically all night and still showing up for work at 7am. Somehow I never collapsed into a pillow of cash.
Anyway, as you can imagine, working every freaking weekend when you are in high school gets very, very old. I missed out on tons of events because they would never let me off. I practically had to give up my first born to go take the ACT test. But it was all good, right? I mean think how great this would look on my resume, think of all the money I'm making, and I'm building a great work ethnic, right? Wrong. I blew all the money before I even got to college. I had the POTENTIAL to get in all kinds of trouble because I was working with older teens from rougher schools, and nobody really gives a crap what's on your resume when you are sixteen.

Then, to my ultimate horror, my mother booked a ten-day trip to Hawaii. I told her there was no way I was going. I couldn't, who would keep the books? The hardware store would surely crumble if I left for ten days. Once she realized that I wasn't going to cave she agreed to let me stay home with my my face...behind my back she called my boss and told him I was leaving for ten days.....
I wanted to hurt her. Such was, and most of the time still is, our complex relationship. My boss told me that he wasn't sure I would have a job when I got back and I was devestated. It tainted my trip. Okay, maybe not that much, once I met that adorable blond on the beach. I had ten fun-filled days that I will never forget (it was my last family vacation). And guess what?

I had a job when I got home. Now that I think back about it, I realize what a jerk my boss was for trying to ruin my vacation. He knew he couldn't find another employee as loyal as I had been. I started speaking up more when I got back and soon after I left for college. And shockingly, I don't think my life is any better for taking on those extra worries during a time when I should have been being totally irresponsible. Okay, I was a little..........

So, if I could go back and have a chat with sixteen-year-old me, I'd tell her to quit that stupid job and keep bumming money off her parents. I'd also tell her to steer clear of Tim, but that's a whole other post entirely! :)

What I'm reading.. Back Talk by Alex's divine, and I'm not just saying that because I want her to read this!

Revenge of the Homecoming Queen, OUT NOW!


TinaFerraro said...

Wonderful post, Steph! And in addition to learning how to say "no," I find I struggle to say "yes" to someone taking work off my hands, too. Pretty much the same thing, and definitely in my best interest to master!

And woo-hoo on that beach hottie!

And to reading Alex's book, which is in my TBR pile, working its way to the top...

Marley Gibson said...

Fabulous post, Steph! What a jerk that boss was. Could you image an adult saying and getting away with that today? The parents would sue. LOL!! I'm glad you had a happy vacation in Hawaii, though. Can't wait to hear the Tim story!

Marley = )

alexgirl said...

Can't believe I missed this post! I must've been out of town.
I'm so glad you're reading Back Talk. Yippeee!
And that story--your boss sounded like such a meany-pants. And you better tell the Tim story one of these days. I'm intrigued!!