Whisper: Blinded By The Obsession To Climb

*As told to Kally from someone who wishes to be anonymous

I came from nothing. My father is a failed farmer and a drunkard. My mother passed away after giving birth to my third sister. We were lucky enough to have a rich relative that saw through all of our education but I was the only one who got myself a degree and migrates to the United States. The moment I set foot in this country, I tell myself to forget the past, forget my roots and make a new life for myself. But it is hard as the past always catches up with you.

I was treated unfairly and unequally due to my country origins and my skin colour. I was never the first choice to hire nor even consider for the promotion. But I was young and I had determination so I pushed myself hard to climb as far as I can. I don’t want to die one day with regrets.

I must say I have done some nasty things during my climb to my success. I am now semi-retired. I will never retire, maybe only after I made my deathbed.

During my first few years in the US, I was always hired with a lowly wage even though my peers are highly paid than I was.

I hate the inequality and I refused to accept it.

Young and hotblooded I was, I kept getting into trouble. Until I met Lisa. Lisa is the perfect American next door sweetheart. She is young, sweet and naive. And she’s the boss’s only child. She fell in love with me and foolishly, I made use of that to my advantage.

When she was pregnant, her father made an offer to me: leave her and he will write me a cheque. But I didn’t leave her. Not because I love her but because the offer was too low. I made up for being a good father as I wasn’t a good husband. I doted my son. When Lisa’s father passed on, I took over the company. I did a few unspeakable things to bring the company into international. Things that I won’t speak of, not even here. Things that I’ll carry over to the other side when I die.

Let’s just say, I caused more than one heart attack in the family when I brought the company to be publicly listed.

My point to this is that I must admit that I was obsessed with climbing the corporate ladder to become someone respectable. It’s a hard and cruel way to be on top. It is survival game in the cruel business world where there is no room for emotions. If I wasn’t the one taking advantage, someone will.

Could I have avoided it by being nice?


I don’t think so. Nor would I advise anyone to do what I did. I strongly believe I did what I could to win at the top. I do have one regret – I wish I hadn’t been so blinded by success. I thought success and happiness come hand in hand but look at me now, I’m a lonely old man, just waiting for my number is up.

My only son has a privilege life. He has more than he needs to get a kickstart in life. I wouldn’t want him to go through life the way I did. He hates the way I treated his mother and will never forgive me. He didn’t even invite me to his wedding. I have nobody to love and no one I will love but myself. I am surrounded everyday by corporate sharks just circling around me for my blood, for one day that I will falter and fall.

Yes, I have written my own legacy. But oh, a lonely disastrous path to reach where I am. Take it as a wistful thinking of an old man. Maybe if I was ordinary. Maybe if I wasn’t so obsessed. I wouldn’t spend the rest of my life alone.

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14 Comments Add yours

  1. Hammad Rais says:

    This does prove that heavy dose of obsession may give you what you want right now but it will sure drain out everything from your life, once you reach the end of the line.
    An eye-opening article this is, Kally.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kally says:

      Yes it does. Thank you for your comment, Hammad.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. AGE says:

    Thank you for sharing. A lesson for everyone.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kally says:

      You’re most welcome.


  3. mobiuswolf says:

    “Maybe if I was ordinary.”
    Nothing extraordinary about that attitude. Extremely common I would say. Sounds like he was extraordinarily good at it, though. Play the victim, justify anything.

    Much more uncommon (among the successful) to choose the straight course. Heh! Like you.

    He’s right about the rewards, though. My grandkids live next door. 🙂

    You just have to take a good hard look at your definition of success.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kally says:

      Haha. Yes, extraordinary by playing victim.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Patty says:

    Better late then never, I like to think. To me, everybody deserves a second, third and if necessary more chances. As a child from a mother who never owned up to her mistakes/faults towards me, I would advice to be honest to the son. And if the son can’t forgive him, that has more to say about him than about the father.
    Having said that, worked at high level in the corporate world, change is possible..but someone has to be the first.


    1. Kally says:

      Patty, you are a very forgiving person. If the world has more of you, it will be a peaceful place to live in. Not everyone is so forgiving and many carry grudges for life – what a burden! Big hugs.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Patty says:

        Well…to be honest, I do hold grudges too 😉 But that is that I am nobodies ‘fool’ and sometimes enough is enough. There are some people who really have to make a first step towards me, if the relationship will ever heal again. But if they do…the door will be wide open.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. agp98 says:

    A lesson learnt !

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kally says:

      Thank you for your comment. And welcome to MiddleMe!

      Liked by 1 person

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