The Long Way Home

Very big day. Payroll is ran every other week for our growing team. Early on this was the day I learned to dread. The actual morning when I emailed our paycheck details into our payroll company. It’s exciting that we even have a payroll company, but shitty because month after month I didn’t get to run payroll for myself. Some months I did, but it was so low that it was embarassing to talk about with other business friends and something you’d never want to post on Facebook. You know, the shit startup founders never talk about. The shit that if you told your friends, they’d look you straight in the eyes and ask, “so how in the hell have you been living these past few months.” Months, I thought to myself, try years. That’s for a different story.

My co-founder reminded me that I was also included in last weeks payroll. I shrugged my shoulders. He reminded me that the company had paid me the last 3 continuous payroll cycles. I paused, blank stare, and thought to myself, really? I thought back over the last 6 weeks and he was right. I just paid myself the most I’d seen in 2 years. FUCK, break out the champagne. Wait, why was nobody spraying champagne all over like they do MLB locker room style? I continued my work day as usual, hustling and moving the needle.

Later that day we needed dinner and I voted for Neighborhood Bar, my favorite place. The place that in a previous life I visited 2-3 times per week, the place I met friends, the place I celebrated life. The place I didn’t visit for 9 months because dammit, I didn’t have enough money in my bank account to buy a beer. As I walked down G Street tonight, getting closer and closer to my favorite watering hole, a tear squeaked out, and then another tear rolled down my cheek. This is the place that is located between my office and home, the place I purposefully didn’t walk by for weeks and months. Why? Because I’d be tempted to walk in and buy a beer I didn’t have money for or run into someone I knew and feel obligated to spend money I didn’t have.

Tonight I bought my favorite $8 goblet of beer. I bought my favorite $10 burger.

Building a business is rough and next month I might have to walk around my favorite bar, but tonight I didn’t.


3 thoughts on “The Long Way Home

  1. Mel, you are awesome. It’s a tough road, for sure, and we don’t talk about a lot of things (in life and entrepreneurship). Things that matter. But because of the feeling we need to jockey for position and manage perception, we don’t.

    Thank you for being vulnerable. It’s refreshing.

  2. I really relate to this, Mel – congratulations on a job well done. I am looking forward to the day that I too have a payroll company and can sweat it out, LOL – wearing ALL the hats is exhausting. I always love watching you and Flash with all your escapades. I am always inspired by you and appreciate you sharing such a tender message.

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