As I sit here at work for the 15th day in a row I can’t help but think to myself,”There has to be a better way.” It’s 5:00 in the evening, and I’ve been here since 9:00 this morning. The only bright spot in my day has been the bacon, egg and cheese biscuit I had from McDonald’s for breakfast. I’ll be leaving in just a few minutes, but I wanted to vent some of my frustration to my fellow LJ’s since you all are such great listeners and alway have worthwhile advice to share.
I’m 29 years old, and I’ve been sitting behind a desk for the past 8 years. I work in the mechanical engineering field where there’s always a deadline looming just around the corner. “Why aren’t you done yet?”, “We need this done yesterday.”, “Can you work some extra hours this week?”. These words are all too common in my line of work. The pain is eased every other Friday when the eagle lands in my mailbox, but is it really worth it? I’m beginning to think it’s not.
A little over a year ago I quit my job at one engineering firm to join another. I’d heard great things about my new employer, and I had several interviews before I accepted their offer. I had grow to hate my job with the previous firm, but I thought “Maybe it’s just the poor atmosphere and low pay. Maybe if I go someplace where the people are easier to work with and the money is better I’ll be happy.” Unfortunately, that has not been the case. Don’t get me wrong. The people here ARE great to work with, and the money IS A LOT better. I have made many friends here, and I have nothing bad to say about any of my fellow employees or my superiors. They really are a great group of people. That being said, “The Business” is still “The Business”. The deadlines still loom, the gray hairs are still popping, and my stress level is as high as ever.
Over the last couple of months, one of the things that has kept me going during the day is Lumberjocks.com. Every so often I’ll log on and check the PULSE and make the occasional comment. It gives me something to look forward to and breaks the monotony of it all. I’ve been inspired by everyone of my fellow jocks, and especially by those who have chosen woodworking as a career. I’m hoping one day I will get up enough courage to break the chains that have me bound to my desk and enjoy the type of freedom that must come with doing something you love. Until that day I’ll continue to do my job well, no matter how much I grow to dispise it, because I take pride in everything that I do. I will not sacrifice the quality of my work just because I’d rather be in the shop. I refuse to feel sorry for myself because I may not be completely happy with some of the career choices I have made. Someday I will join the ranks of those who call the woodshop their office. Let’s just hope it’s sonner that later. Until that day comes, I look forward to you guys keeping me company through each of the long days I’m stuck behind the monitor.
Thanks for lending me your ears. Now…. off to the shop…
-- JP, Louisville, KY