Breaking My Political Silence

Growing up, Election Day was like Christmas for my family. We'd gather around the TV with a blank map of the U.S. and color each state red or blue as the "politi-guys" (a term I still use as a grown adult) projected the winner of the Presidential election. The recount of 2000 -- oh man. Big times in our household.

Hanging chad, anyone?
But those were happier times. Times when I never would have dreamed up an election cycle like this one. I've watched the light go out that I once saw in my father's eyes at the prospect of selecting a new Commander in Chief. I've glazed over the politically charged posts and articles that have been cluttering every corner of the Internet with he said/she said. America is tired; so very tired.

I voted today, but with a different outlook than any other time I've fulfilled my civic right.

I filled in a circle on the first race listed on the ticket, and I'll admit I wasn't thrilled about it. But I also filled in 16 other circles; that's 16 other people who will have a say in the way our government operates. Social media, the news, and popular opinion tell me that just one of those races matters. But you know what? Our country wasn't built on the opinions of any one person, and that's still true today.

Now I know the Dallas County Sheriff isn't going to send our troops off to war. I know no one in the 195th District Court will be the face the world identifies with this nation. I know the Railroad Commissioner isn't going to play any sort of role in selecting the next Supreme Court Justice. In fact, if you asked me, "So Becky, what DOES the Railroad Commissioner do?" My answer would be, "You know... um... something with the railroad." It's a similar story for the rest of these people whose names I hadn't heard of prior to this morning. I may not know exactly HOW each of them will operate in conjunction with our government, but I know they are going to be a part of the future of our government and democracy -- even if it's on a small scale. So I took the time to care about the people they are and what they stand for.

Why yes I did buy new shoes specifically to wear on Election Day
This morning, I sat down at my computer and I got to know the other people who want to represent myself, my city, my state and my country. And when I went to the polls, I didn't randomly select people because I liked the sound of their name or because they had a "D" or an "R" (which was pretty much my strategy prior to today). I colored in those circles because I knew who I was voting for.

So to all of you running for an office other than President of the United States, thank you. I mean, I'll probably forget your name tomorrow and I probably won't keep tabs on what you do if you're elected. But I'm glad you exist, and I hope you do your job well. Because there ARE other people in this fight.

And thank goodness for that.


A Birthday Card and a Resignation Letter Walk into a CEO's Office...

Life is a series of decisions; hard decisions, easy decisions, good decisions, bad decisions. I have trouble deciding what toppings I want on my pizza, so making the big, life altering kinds of decisions is something I try to avoid. But sometimes, those decisions refuse to be ignored. Such was the case a few weeks ago when I turned my future into one big question mark.

It's 7:30am on a Wednesday in late August. I'm at my desk ready to dry heave, completely panicked, because... it's happening. I'm going to step down from my job without a clue what I'm going to do next. (Pause for "Are you crazy?!" mental shouting.)

Here's the deal. My job is amazing and so are the people that I work with. I've learned invaluable skills, traveled the country, and crafted messages for a massive brand. I've progressed further in my career than I could have ever dreamed in such a short amount of time, but that hasn't come without sacrifices. A lof of them. (And also some scars. Literally.) I know this big, scary decision will make me whole again, and I've been making excuses to put it off long enough.

Which brings us back to my mic drop moment.

I have a great amount of respect for my (now former) company's CEO, and I don't want to disappoint him. With my better judgment fogged by the weight of emotions I'm trying to wrangle, I walk into his office with what I deem to be a peace offering... in the form of a greeting card. My opening line:

"I have some good news and some bad news. The good news is, I have your birthday card. The bad news is, I also have my letter of resignation." 


I'm More of an Indoors Girl

"What do you do for a living?"

This is a simple, normal question that every adult hears on a regular basis. I just don't have a simple, normal answer. My usual avoidance strategy is to play the vague card: "I work in advertising," and hope we can leave it at that. But we rarely do.

"Oh really? What does that entail?"

This is where things get hairy. Although I work in advertising, my responsibilities can't be summed up in "I'm like Don Draper without the drinking problem." Three years ago, I started down a logical path as a copywriter, but I've been all over the place since then. Today, my title says "Associate Creative Director," but it doesn't say that I'm also producer, director, casting director, make-up artist, shrink, chef, hair stylist and den mother. These are all responsibilities that fall under my umbrella as the creative director of several online video series that my agency creates for ... wait for it ... the NRA. Yes, that NRA.

The up side here is that my work stories are far more entertaining than anything my accountant friends have to share, and I can bewitch 95 percent of men by dissecting the pros and cons of a Glock vs. a Sig Sauer.