Augusta, I have some news: I’m leaving. Yes, again. The day that this paper hits the yellow boxes will be my last on the air at HD983. No, I’m not kidding, and no, I haven’t forgotten what happened the last time I left. I know that’s what you’re thinking because everyone in my life, upon hearing the news, has either asked it out loud or with the look on their face.
In case you have forgotten, or just don’t know altogether, I left back in 2013 for what I thought was a dream job. What followed was a month of cluster-fudgery that ended in what I thought at the time was the end of my radio career. Obviously, it wasn’t. I later took advantage of a very unexpected opportunity, which brought me back to the station that I helped build. The next three years were a blur, as I never stopped working, even building my side-hustle to a level that kept me busy pretty much every weekend. I vowed to never again gamble with my family’s security and well-being.
So, here I am, gambling once again with my family’s security and well-being. Quite literally, as my next destination is Las Vegas, Nevada.
Why would I even consider it, considering how it turned out last time? In the words of Lonestar: “We’re not just doing it for the money … we’re doing it for a s***load of money!” I’m kidding, of course. But it is a very significant jump for my radio career. One that will allow me to spend weekends with my family rather than working my side-hustle, trying to make ends meet.
But then there’s my support system. I didn’t even allow myself to consider the job until after my wife said: “Well, why not?” Considering what I put my family through last time, that would be more than sufficient of a “Why not?” The fact that she still would support my career after such an epic failure, honestly, surprised me. After several conversations about it, I discovered that not only did she support the idea of career advancement, she supported the adventure itself. Ladies and gentlemen, I married well.
Then there was the question that my daughter asked me: “What if the whole ‘Panama City’ thing happens again?” That question cut me. It cut me deep. But I told her that you can’t let failure scare you from trying again. And, boy, have I been scared.
But what’s the point of putting so much effort into a career if you have no plans to advance? I hope it will be good for my kids to see how hard work and perseverance pays off. After all, isn’t that what our parents and grandparents always told us?
I also hope it’ll be good for my kids to see that there is so much more life outside of this city. I’ll be honest: I got into radio to leave Augusta. It’s not that I don’t love my hometown. Quite the contrary! It’s just that there’s so much to see and experience in this beautiful country.
Sure, we’ll miss our family, friends and home. And I’ll still check in every week right here in the Metro Spirit, as long as they let me. But, my daughter put it best: “Family is family and home is home. They’ll always be there.” But we only get one life, why not explore the gift we’ve been given a little bit while we can.