For those of you who may not be in the know: I have changed jobs. You can read that again if you like. After five years, two months, and one week, my time of working at Morgan Printing has come to a whimpering end. My last day was friday of last week.
The question now is why; I couldn’t take that place anymore. When I started back in 2002, there was enough work to keep 7 people in my department very, very busy. Five years later, we’re scraping for work with a staff of 3. It was clear that the business was not growing. I would have very little work to do, but by day’s end I was exhausted from trying to keep busy and not look like I was slacking. When that is your full-time job, it’s time to go.
After a six-year hiatus from the tech field, I decided that it was my time to get back into it. I had several standing invitations for jobs, so I didn’t worry too much about looking. A friend pointed me towards a job listing and over one weekend I rebuilt my resume, wrote a cover letter, got some references, and applied to the job. By week’s end, I had talked to a contract agent, had an interview with the company, and gotten selected for the position. That friday, I submitted my two-week notice.
Yesterday, I started my new job as a technical contractor at Advanced Micro Devices (AMD). It’s a one year contract; AMD has the option to bring me on board permanently at the end of the contract (or any time if they really like me). I am doing what is called Power Analysis; due to recent EPA legislation, low power consumption in computers is a major selling point. It’s my job to assist the performance lab in determining how much power AMD’s processors consume under various loads. And that’s probably most of what I’m allowed to say under the non-disclosure agreement I signed.
It’s not a fun job, it’s not a glamorous job, it’s not a repetitious job. But once I learn what the hell I’m doing, once I get a sense for what is expected of me, once I see how it all fits together, then maybe I’ll be able to stretch out and start enjoying it all. Yesterday blew my damned mind; I was a deer in the headlights, a babe in the woods. So much info to take in. So much to figure out. By day’s end, I had a raging headache and a glassy-eyed stare that didn’t want to go away. I went home, took my mind off the day by cooking dinner and watching TV. I passed out before midnight.
This morning, I slept well but all that was destroyed by my first thought of my new job; the headache returned and has stayed with me most of the day. Couldn’t eat my breakfast. Didn’t have much for lunch. The stress of having to adapt and adjust for the first time in 5 years is a lot to bear. By the end of the day, I had spent some time under the wing of my coworkers; I was starting to figure things out, starting to talk, starting to see the light. I’ll quote something one of my managers said to me: “The first two weeks is like trying to take a sip of water from a roaring firehose.” I agree. I’ll get used to it some time soon; I better, because I left my old life behind. Now it’s drink or drown.