Monday, February 02, 2009

A confederate yankee after all

Since I didn't have enough drama last week when I wrote about time and the lack thereof, God decided it would be good to add some more crazy stuff to life.

I wrote my piece about free time and balancing my life last week when it appeared downsizing would eventually happen.

They did. THE NEXT DAY. Last Wednesday and Thursday, out of 1400 people in our division around the world, almost 200 were either let go or offered early retirement which they accepted. Included among the departed were several good friends, as well as my boss's boss, which also meant a complete realignment of our department and the realignment of all of our duties which will (probably) result in more cuts later that may or may not include my position.

I didn't even realize how it had happened until midday Thursday. I left Wednesday for school, and my superior was in his office. I came back Thursday, and the office was closed and the nameplate removed.

Thursday and Friday were very strange days. I was thankful to still have a job (for the time being) but at the same time you feel bad, even guilty, about those who may not be there anymore. In this case, one of the departed was one of the ones who hired me, so it was a very strange feeling.

Today involved a two and a half hour meeting discussing roles and responsibilities for each of us who remained, which was then followed for me by two more two and a half hour classes.

Things are looking more and more uncertain here, but for now I know my kids and I will probably be stable. Probably.

After May, who knows? I might find something else in Atlanta. I might stay within the company in a different or expanded role. I might change industries or fields entirely again.

I've had job search agents set up for other cities for a while now, just in case the "perfect" opportunity came along. Those two cities are New York and Las Vegas.

While there hasn't been much in my field in Las Vegas and I don't have much of a support structure there, it would be fun to live there - though I don't know about raising two kids there. I like the city, but visiting and going for work is a LOT different than moving there.

As for New York - it's probably been obvious from my posts over the past few months that I've been gaining a re-found affection for my old home. The kids have been developing a great affection for the city as well - not just the tourist traps, but even Stuyvesant Town and the Village and other sites of my old haunts.

So, let's just say the possibility of the kids and I returning to New York City is not nearly as farfetched as it was several months ago, especially if the right opportunities come along. There would be some adjustment with regards to finding school for the kids - though I'd hope they could receive the same opportunities I received - but if things do break a certain way, then it has to be considered as an option.

Now, there is no way I would want either of my kids to potentially be deprived of the opportunities available to them, so if there's an opportunity to take advantage of, then it would be foolish not to take it. If I weren't able to get them into a decent school in New York, then I wouldn't consider it. But I miss the city, and the kids miss the city, so perhaps it would be worth it if the correct opportunity presented itself.

For now, though, I'm still in the same job, in the same house, taking the same classes. At a certain point, though, you really have to start addressing every option on the table, including the ones that seemed ludicrous and unfathomable mere months before.

It's been ten years since I made the decision to stay in Atlanta. I may be closer to making the reverse decision than I ever thought I would be, both for myself and for the kids.

Every option is on the table.

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