I’ll admit, my first thought was: “Oh crap, my new boss is going to want to eat lunch with me everyday.” Yes, at the moment that was my bigger concern (since it could be long lasting), not your final time with the group and how I know you wanted it to be. But only momentarily, then I focused back on you and your going away lunch- I didn’t mean to offer it up as a sacrificial lamb. But it was true so it just came out, there was no other way.
“Not on your calendar”… really? The reason for that is that you wanted this to be with people who you will actually miss, people who will miss you. I was walking a fine line there- mild obfuscation, a gentle hint. Either he didn’t get it or didn’t want to. Did I recover OK? I mean myself and my attempt to not look like I had excluded him on purpose? He’s coming- I know not exactly what you wanted. OK, it was specifically what you said you did NOT want. But I was trapped- had no choice. I hope you don’t hate me for it… I knew you would understand.
And so it went. It was not so bad, fine in fact. And as much as I don’t like having my personal lifestyle aired in public (even if it is just my reports and boss), in this case I am glad that you mentioned that I am a difficult person to eat with. I hope that scared him off. He indicated as such, with no further questions, surprisingly. But the whole thing became too much of a distraction, so it is only now that I have the mental space to think back and reminisce.
I was not so sure about you when I moved under you. In fact, when I found out I was a bit concerned. I knew I could have done a lot worse, but it was just the change of it that worried me. Trust takes time to build between two people, no matter how much some try to rush that or act like it can be instantaneous. And I had that trust before- two way trust built over 7 years. And yes it was great. I didn’t want to lose that. And I knew no matter how good either of us was, it would take time to get that back.
I could tell you were not so sure about me at the start, even though we had known each other for a few years. Maybe it takes you a while to warm up to anyone. I think that is your, no wait, Our, personality. Then, over time, trough work, dedication, and communication I proved myself to you. And your kind words, thankfulness and protection proved yourself to me.
Remember early on when you used to ask me if I could handle something, or if something got done? How long did it take before you came to know that if it is in my world I will handle it- if I am not sure I will ask, if I can’t do it I will tell you. Silence means it is something you do not have to worry about. Even though I felt like telling you that, I didn’t, because I knew you had to come to believe it through my actions.
After I proved myself I then grew to into your next in command. I didn’t know that was something I specifically strive for, I just know it is naturally where I prefer to be. Someone’s main go-to person- in times you are confused, overwhelmed, excited, or beaten down. Good or bad. I am the person to turn to who can listen, understand, sympathize, appreciate, plan your response and help you execute it. I cannot accept not being that person. Cannot be a second or third in line- someone on the sidelines, forgotten about. It does not suite me. Soon I became all you had . I felt bad for all you were losing. I knew it was hard for you- you told me you had trouble sleeping. I didn’t understand how close you were to your breaking point until very recently. I hope, no, I know, you didn’t bring me close, to that position, because I was almost all you had. I knew I would have gotten there regardless.
I appreciated having a boss that was as distant as me. Maybe you even more so than I (what a first for me). You understood, and didn’t ask more of me than you did of yourself. And does this sound bad?- but I appreciated vengefulness. I found it beautiful because I never saw it directed at people who didn’t deserve it. And when it was directed at someone who I shared a burning vengeance for I was ecstatic. “I hope they’re miserable there”, I reveled in those words multiple times in my head at all hours of the day.
Thank you for the kind words- always, and even more so at the end. I am the same- I would save the words until the end and rely on perception and interpretation before that. “MVP”, “Held everything together”, “The only reason things got done”- thank you. I am more assured now that it is fitting that I will be stepping into your role.
But now I have to get busy. I have a lot to do. Have to prove myself again. And we both know how much harder it will be this time. It was too hard for you. You couldn’t make it- but I am not giving up hope for me.
Thank you. Good luck. We’ll always have Amsterdam.