Lucas' Refuge

Narrative matters

September 09, 2022


"I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul."
William Ernest Henley

For a long time, I thought doing good work would be enough – my code, among other things, being testament to that. It would be all I had to do for my manager to systematically recognize my impact. Possibly awarding me with plenty of interesting projects and, hopefully, a promotion.

Was I wrong to think so? Not entirely, but I've definitely missed the mark. I can say I got it on the spot regarding understanding that the outcome, which I anticipated, was something outside my control. To me, that was never at odds with my goals, nor was I a cynic to the point of seeing no value in whichever venture fortune presents me. It just meant my energy could be better spent elsewhere.

That may sound cheesy, but I'll say it anyway – at the risk of sounding like the proverbial coach. I wanted to control my narrative. I wanted to mold the perception of my work by others, before they've formed it.

Politicians and CEOs alike understand the value in that. No surprise that I've developed a taste for political speeches. Not for its content, but rather for its form. That was somewhat accidental, as my wife's by trade obligation just represented an enough level of exposition to the subject, but also because there is a sublime beauty in a well-developed argument – truly something to be worshiped and admired. Be it written or spoken.

Why had I gone through all this trouble? Because I can. A simple answer – just like most truths. The reality is, I cannot be sure how others will receive my message, but I do can convey it how I like. That is what matters to me. To have agency over the most mine thing of all – my story.

© 2022 Lucas Lira Gomes
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