I began to realize my parents and Cindy’s parents were growing older. And that our parents and my grandparents were missing out on the grandkids. (I was glad we made the move back. Six years later my father-in-law and my grandmother, who I was very close to, passed away.)
I decided to get a “regular” job and moved the family back to York.
I wanted to establish financial stability in my life. I didn’t want to live paycheck to paycheck or to have to worry about a paycheck. I wanted to build a bank account and some personal wealth.
I felt that I was never going to accomplish that through music.
I had two kids to raise and put through college.
So when we moved back to York in October of 1989, I took my drums, performing, and music and shoved it in the basement.
I didn’t think about it.
If I listened to the radio it was talk radio and I didn’t buy any music.
My only exposure to music would have been if I was watching TV and while channel surfing came upon a video or song that caught my ear or eye, or if my kids were listening to music.
Rarely did I talk to people about this talent or passion. The kids never heard much about it and I never really encouraged them to play an instrument. That I regret.
I buried and denied the passion for music knowing I had to concentrate on my work. I have no degrees or college education. I had to work extra hard and not be diverted and music was a diversion.
I got a job as a contract administrator for a fastener distributor.
I knew nothing about fasteners but I could set up and run a Lotus spreadsheet, a skill I had learned at the studio in Pittsburgh.
With no thought of music or ever pursuing my music career again I dove into the job.
I was successful.
It was a small family business and I moved up the ladder very quickly by always seeing a need and fulfilling that need.
The job grew from contract administrator to senior contract administrator to government sales manager to the company sales manager in 6 years.
The more success and financial consideration I received the more I poured myself into the position. I was thinking (wrongly) that one day I may share a piece of this company I was helping to build.
When I became sales manager in 1995 the annual revenues were $3,000,000. In the 2000’s the business took off to a peak of $44,000,000 in 2008.
The rewards I was seeing allowed me to pay off cars, then buy them cash. I put my son through Penn State and daughter through technical school without any loans and eventually paid off the mortgage on my modest home.
We took nice family trips and vacations and I was able to accumulate a nice retirement fund and a decent amount of cash and assets. Certainly not independently wealthy but I achieved my goal of not worrying about day to day expenses and major costs that arise.
As the sons of the business owners were being brought into the family business I realized that I had achieved all I would be allowed to achieve with this business. The real rewards were reserved for family.
I also began to see that as the next generation work force started moving into corporate America the business climate was changing.
My job had become very unpleasant.
© Otis P Smith and About the Groove, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Otis P Smith and About the Groove with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.