If you have read any of the previous posts in this blog, then you know that I haven’t been very good at consistent posting – ever. That is going to change soon. You see, for the last 4 years, I’ve been trying to figure out one thing. How to be able to teach more students. The single biggest obstacle to that goal, in my mind, has been the requirement of my day job. On a “normal” work day, I am committing a minimum of 9.5 hours to my job. Granted, I’m only getting paid for 8 of those hours, and granted, everyone at my workplace is in the same boat, but it severely restricts the amount of time I have left over for teaching and family time.
My mindset was further hampered by the fact that I can do my job from a computer anywhere in the world with an internet connection and a cell phone signal, but because of archaic mindsets about being able to verify that I’m actually working by visually confirming my physical presence at the office, I have the rather arbitrary requirement imposed upon me that I don’t get paid if I’m not at the office or travelling for a work-related reason. And this in a time when more and more of America’s workforce is working “from home.”
A year ago, the situation was aggravated by my wife’s getting a job in a place where she is valued and made to feel valuable by her co-workers. The only problem with Lisa’s new job was that it required her and our two daughters to live in another city, 110 miles away.
So I had to step up my game. I had to find a way to leave my day job without imposing a financial hardship on my family. Let me tell you, this is not easy to do when you’ve been with the same company for more than 20 years, and doing the same job for more than 10 of those years.
So, I’ve been living in Cedar City now for 23 years. In February 2011 I had the “brilliant” idea that if I had students in Kanab, where my mom lives, I could use that to pay for my gas to go and visit my mom on a regular basis. I managed to get one student, and it was a really good thing, but it was hard driving there after work one day, sleeping there, and then getting up early enough the next day to make the 80-mile drive back in time for my normal work schedule. When Lisa got her job in Richfield, we decided it made sense to find students there, so that we could try to speed up the process of my leaving my day job so I could live full-time with the family in Richfield. This started a viscously brutal weekly schedule for me where I was working in Cedar on Monday, driving to Richfield that night after work to teach students there, then driving back to Cedar for work Tuesday morning. Then I would go to Kanab on Wednesday after work, teach my students there, then drive back to Cedar on Thursday morning. This was getting old fast, and the powers that be at work were preventing my boss from allowing me to have a more flexible work schedule. I finally had to go outside of my own chain of command to one of the vice presidents in Vegas to work out a “trial” work-from-home schedule where I got to work “from home” two days each week. This made things a lot better for my work schedule and family life, but brought a lot of grief down on my boss, which doesn’t make me terribly happy since he’s stood behind me now for almost 13 years whenever I needed any support. But when you have a sleep disorder, getting up at 4 am on a regular basis is hard to do, and I still wasn’t living full-time with my family
But now, all of that is going to change. In two weeks, I will work my last day at that job. I’m going to teach CIS classes at the same college where Lisa is working! I’m only going to be adjunct, so it’s not a full-time gig, and I won’t get benefits, but Lisa’s benefits are better than what I was getting from my current employer anyway. The classes I’m teaching don’t start until 1 pm, and they are only 3 days a week, so no more 4 am wake ups, and I’ll be able to schedule students at earlier times of the day, giving them more flexibility with me.
This long-winded post then comes down to the fact that I will have a lot more time to spend on things that I want to do, such as posting on my blog. 🙂
Ok, mostly I’ll have more time with my family, but I’ll be able to grab more time to pursue other things as well.
So, in two weeks,I begin a bold new chapter in my life. I can’t wait to tell you all how this ones turns out, because I know it’s going to be great!