Started a new job at the end of last week. I won't go into much details about the where's, but I'm working in what is essentially the marketing/PR dept of a local organization that does a lot of good work for the people of Houston. I'm excited to be a part of such an organization, and to FINALLY be in a position to use my degree. I started crying this weekend because I was so happy. And then my Sweet Patootie pointed out that I had also gotten the job on my own merits, and not with my Dad's help or any of our family political connections. I can't really describe how good it makes me feel.
One of my biggest fears of returning to Houston was that it would reinforce my identity as "Ken's Daughter" - that I would only be a reflection of my Dad's success. While it's certainly helpful at times to be "Ken's Daughter", it's also a lot of pressure. What if I screw up? What if I offend someone? I would hate for my Dad's reputation to be tarnished because of something incredibly stupid that I'd done. And in the ever changing political climate of Houston, what if Dad fell out of favor? Even though he's not an elected official, he's connected to several. In fact, his former boss was recently involved in a big scandal that ruined boss' career. What if Dad's current boss does something scandalous? Dad could be dragged through the mud by association. Would my repuation suffer as well? Afterall, we have a fairly uncommon last name (and I'm often asked at political events if I'm "Ken's Daughter" or "Ken's Wife" or "Kin to Ken") - so making the connection between us is quite easy.
So I'm proud that I was able to get this all on my own (save for the fact that my parents raised me and provided countless oppourtunities for me that had contributed to my success - but you get the idea). I'm also relieved. This is my success, and if I fail, it's my failure. Just like all my failures in Chicago.