To me, the measure of a man is how he deals with responsibility. When you are put in charge of a project, a pet or a person, how do you react? How do you manage to maintain that focus and discipline, 24/7? How do you ensure that you maintain respect in both directions? It’s a big deal. A man rises to the challenge. When I think of the men I respect, this is exactly what I picture: competence in the face of great responsibility.
This makes it all the harder to know that, in myself, I don’t see that. What I want most in life is to be free of all responsibilities, so that I just do what I want. In my own eyes, this makes me more of a child than a man. It can be fun, certainly, but endless amusement is not adulthood. I believe I deal with the few responsibilities that come my way, but I don’t especially believe that keeping plates and laundry clean and the bills paid in themselves make me a man.
Perhaps I’ll never believe it. Perhaps those few times I’ve been in charge and I’ve blown it – really blown it badly – have convinced me that it’s not for me. Perhaps that part of me is right, and I will never be a leader of any kind. They say the world needs followers, too. I feel like that’s just a thing they say to failures and cowards.