Cool, huh? Soon I will have a piece of paper that says Cornell on it.
The German class was pretty easy, since my German is mind-blowingly good (just kidding- it's decent) but the whole thing with commute took about 8 hours a week. The Cornell program takes about 4 hours a week. And then, of course, I have a new job. And kids. And a house. And a cat. And three hermit crabs.
And of course I have to make all these new avatars of myself. So, I've been kind of busy.
Last year wasn't much fun, what with late night calls and a rough situation at work. I was feeling almost sorry for myself until Ralf told me to man up and make a plan.
Man up this, I said:
Ralf was intrigued by this response but didn't quite see the relevance.
So I made a fine plan to get a Ph.D. in organizational behavior or cognitive science while perfecting my roundhouse kick.
Ralf suggested I try to come up with a more practical and lucrative plan.
Feeling slightly aggrieved that he didn't want to move the entire family to the East Coast and pay for me to explore my inner Dr. Laura, I updated my resume and applied for various paid jobs.
I usually apply for one job at a time because I usually get the job and I hate saying no. This isn't quite as cocky as it sounds because I research and apply for jobs I have an excellent chance of getting.
That makes it sound easy but it's not. In fact, I'm glossing over months of hard work and a helping hand from some good friends.
And it's not like finding a job is a ticket to happiness. I've had tough work experiences: I've been fired and re-organized and offered jobs that disappeared after I accepted. I've worked very long hours for very little money. I've had bosses that didn't take me seriously or whose sole purpose in life was to grind me into dust. Etc., etc., etc.
(I've had good jobs, too.)
Plus, as a mom of two small kids living in Munich and working for Californian companies I'm. . . well, I tell people I'm the modern worker.
Anyway, over the last 6 months I applied for about ten jobs, just to see what fetched up.
In the end I had to choose between several offers, which meant figuring out trade offs, such as, Can I work from home? Do I have to wear a suit? Will I have to travel? Will I be on the phone every night? Is this a completely new role for me that will require 80 hour weeks for the first 6 months? Am I willilng to relocate? Is this a lateral move or a career step? Can I learn anything from my boss? Where do I want to be in 5 years?
Of course, for my ideal job, I'd relocate, wear a suit, commute, travel or eat mushy bananas but none of them was quite ideal.
One of the options we considered involved moving back to the US, which was tempting. Munich's a nice city but it isn't home. The biggest problem is language, and I'm not just talking about embarassing mistakes like that time I said 'I will throw up on you soon,' instead of, 'Let's discuss this later.' It's a LOT of work to function as an adult in a second language.
But... it wasn't the right time.
So anyway, after all that marvelous self contemplation and a chance to do something completely different I opted for a similar type of job at the same company.
Also, I now devote 10 minutes a day to manning up.