I had never really thought about it, it was just something I had to do. When I walked into the Foreign Affairs building, I stepped on the same stairs as my Father, and rode the same elevator as he had for his career.
After he died, I was lost and some how needed to reconnect with him. My chosen path was slightly off, at 16 I wanted to join the U.N and work on Refugee issues. My Father would never have wanted me to sign away my life to the government, he never wanted me to step foot into the building, let alone be a civil servant.
Some how, the weird way I got to those steps was something I needed, to somehow get to know the Father that was struck with cancer way too young, leaving me a shell without my rock in life.
As always, I kept my mouth shut and never discussed who my Father was, I figured enough time had passes, no one would remember. In hind sight, it had only been 6 years, but to me at the time, it seemed like enough time had passed.
4 months had passed, and it seemed I hadn’t made any waves, I was learning a great deal, keeping my head down and doing as I was told. My boss came into my office, handed me documents and told me to come with him to a meeting. I just went with it, even though it was close to the end of the day.
I got into the elevator, a gentleman with a fine dark suit was standing in the corner. He stared at me, I began to panic and think there was something on my face. I wasn’t sure what to say or do, I just didn’t like him staring at me. My boss cracked a joke about something in the newspaper, I faintly smiled, still thinking I had something in my teeth or face.
I hadn’t noticed, but we were going up, which meant, we were heading to the big bosses office. Which made me break out into a cold sweat. The elevator stopped, my boss motioned me to go first, I led the way down the hall. I looked back, the gentleman in the suit was following us. Oh GAWD, please tell me I don’t have something on my face!
I opened the office doors, my boss was still laughing about something, and then, the gentleman in the fancy suit hollered “Geez, you have grown up, your picture was always on your Father’s desk.” As he said it, my boss, and my boss’s boss, stopped dead in their tracks and looked at me, then back at the gentleman.
I smiled and said “well, I guess I have been outed, and you knew my Father.”
The gentleman looked at me and said “I didn’t just know your Father, he was my life line. I called him all the time and was abroad when he passed away.”
So at that moment, I turned red, and felt all eyes on me. My boss asked directly “this makes so much more sense, this is all you know.”
He had no idea how true his words rang, and how much I didn’t want them to be true.