Thursday, January 26, 2017

New Beginnings II

I wasn't out of work for long.  Eight days, but who's counting?

I've found a short-term consulting job that started already this past Monday. The job will only last for 6-8 weeks, but I'm good with that. If I must be unemployed, I'd much rather it be in March than January.

I'm afraid I didn't utilize my time off as well as I'd hoped I would. I did the looking for work in the morning part pretty religiously. It was the work around the house in the afternoon part that fell kaput. I'd finish scouring the job sites and putting in my apps, then turn off the laptop and eat lunch. Then, when I should have started working, I'd look out the window. It was cold, gray. Surely, I told myself, a little nap wouldn't be out of order. So, I'd lie down for a bit, then I'd putz for a bit, then it was after four, and it gets dark at five and surely you don't expect me to work on stuff after dark!

I think I only talked me into getting stuff done on two of those eight days.  Not a good track record, unless I consult the "I'm free" voice - it LIKED the putzing and napping part.

How do I like the new place? So far, so good - the company is really small; an interesting change from the larger places I've worked. The job can be done mostly remotely, except for client meetings. This means I get to work from home. I like working from home.

Maria (my sister who's health has been on edge these past two years) took a turn for the worse last weekend, and my heart is calling me home to Minnesota. I need to be there for her daughter; I need to be there for me.

Fortunately for me, one of the hallmarks of a small company is flexibility. When I went in on my first day, I told them what is going on. I said I needed to go to Minnesota for a bit; that I wouldn't blame them if they wanted to rethink their decision to hire me and look elsewhere instead. They told me they didn't really care how remote I was; that as long as I was online, they didn't care if it was MO or MN that I was working from. I am most grateful.

More hard stuff.
I'm rather tired of hard stuff.

But grateful for a couple of weeks off to gather my strength before facing down this latest heartbreaker.
Grateful for a company that will trust me to work completely remotely.
Grateful to have money coming in.
Grateful that beginnings follow endings. Even the hard endings.

Friday, January 13, 2017

New Beginnings

My last day at Ericsson was last Friday. It was with much regret that I finished up my daily team call, wrote up the notes, sent them out, and shut down my laptop one last time. I didn't want to leave - I HATE leaving things uncompleted. I worked hard almost right up to the end; I wanted to hand over my project neatly wrapped with a red bow.

I worked around the house over the weekend; got started on building the closet shelving system.

Monday, I got up and started to look for work. There's not a lot out there right now, but I'm looking anyways. I figure that if I never hit the submit button on these job ads, they'll never have the chance to tell me no. Or ignore me completely. I mean, what fun is life if you don't have job applicants to ignore? And, eventually, most likely, one of them will look at my resume and say, 'yup. that's what we're looking for', and I'll be back to work.

I have competing voices going in my head:

Voice 1:  OMG! I'm unemployed and I don't have any money coming in and I'll never find a job and I'll be bankrupt and on the street and then I'll be homeless and... You get my drift.

Voice 2 (talking quietly, underneath Voice 1):  I'm free! I'm FREE!

Change is easier to adjust to when it's self-initiated, but I'm working on it.

Realistically, it's a bit much to ask that a job show up right when I need one.
Also realistically, I needed this break. I enjoyed my work at Ericsson, but constant time zone adjustments made me tired. Already, after just a week off (and my fourth week in one spot), I feel less tired. My body and the clock are in agreement on when it's time to sleep, time to eat.

It's good for me to have some time free. Time to look for work and work on my long-neglected projects, yes. But also time to take naps and do not much at all. Time to look around and breathe.

Someone once said it was good to have times in life where one can stop, breathe and relax.

Maybe the universe is trying to tell me something.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Happy New Year!

My sister's family has a quirky tradition they follow to ring in the new year. At midnight on the 31st, they run out the back door of their house - to usher out the old year, then run around the house barefoot to the front door, where they bring in the new one. The tradition wouldn't be quite so quirky if they didn't live in Minnesota, where the ground is quite cold come New Year's Eve. My brother-in-law is kind enough to clear a path for them on their annual jaunt - no need to add injuries from errant branches stuck in the snow to the mix.

This is the first year I've had a chance to join them for the festivities, and I must say, it wasn't so bad. I followed the teenagers out the door and almost to the corner of the house before my feet figured out what was up. From there, it was a quick sprint across the gravel (what, exactly, do you think you are doing???), a short jog across the concrete driveway (OUCH!  that bit of gravel that decided to quick-freeze to the bottom of my foot hurts!) with a few hops to remove the gravel bit, then up the front steps (whose idea was this???) and back inside (Made It!).

Once inside, feet tingling, bodies revved, we toasted the new year with a glass of sparking cider - and I was in bed within thirty minutes. (One can only take this acting like a youth thing so far, you know.)

I see a lot of life changes in this new year, starting with my job. I thought an issue with a non-compete agreement had been settled. My former company's lawyer disagreed and threatened to take me to court, so I have resigned my current position effective this coming Friday. Going to court is expensive, and I have lots of higher priority uses for my money than to use a good chunk of it to keep a contract job.  **sigh** Once my travel cut back to every other week, I really liked my job, and I was good at it. I'm trying to look at it like one of those nudges the universe gives from time to time - pushing me out of my comfort zone to a better place. It's not working, yet, but I'm trying to look at it that way...

The other life changes are more positive - Joe and Rita are engaged and have a wedding plan, so he'll be moving out. Kate, God willin' and the crick don't rise, will be graduating before summer. All good things.

5... 4... 3... 2... 1...  Happy New Year!