Ever Changing, Ever Growing

My, how time flies!  I tend to get pretty wrapped up in the day-to-day things that go on in my life without realizing just how much things change over time.  It is nice and refreshing to get a sense of perspective every once in a while.

The big news, of course, is that we had our baby girl at the end of June.  Her name is Evelyn.  She has been such a treat to behold.  I’m sure everyone has similar things to say about their babies, and I echo pretty much all of that.  The good times are fantastic, and the not-so-good times are very taxing.  I wouldn’t trade it though.

She has changed so much over the last month and a half it is hard to realize it.  This is definitely a sense of perspective.  She has already increased her birth weight by over 70% in 7 weeks.  Because the changes are a little each day, it was difficult to realize it at first.  But we now look at the different diapers even, and what used to seem ‘itty bitty’ before we had her, now seem large.  I know that people always say that children grow so fast, but until I saw it first hand, I didn’t really understand.

Evelyn is such a sweet little angel.  She definitely has her periods of time where she isn’t, but it isn’t her fault.  She has some symptoms of a condition (GERD) that causes babies to be very fussy due to discomfort and pain.  We have recently been trying out a potential remedy for this and it has helped tremendously.  Unfortunately, she is now sick (unrelated) and is very congested, and unhappy.  It can be difficult at times to look past the fussiness and see the true angel underneath, but she is always there.

I was talking with a buddy at work the other day about his kids, and while he definitely ‘feels my pain’ he is one of the people that I know that truly does.  There are several people I know with kids (no, really?) that say that their kids were fussy and they did ‘xyz’ for it.  Most people tend to react like we are ‘over-parenting’ our child.  But based on the condition, and what is going on, we are actually holding ourselves together pretty well.  His second child was completely opposite.  Would sit there, not need much attention, when the baby cried they’d pick him up and all was good.  ‘This’ was the experience that most people seem to remember about their kids.  While it can still be difficult at times, it isn’t brutal.  His first kid was brutal for the first seven months.  Nobody understood the situation, nobody ‘got’ it.  I get it.  He can empathize with our situation because he lived it.  Every child is different.  One benefit that he mentioned, though, is that because of how much ‘work’ it was with his first child, the two of them have bonded more for it, because with the second child, the work isn’t needed as much which allows the parents to actually get some time on their own.  Now that his first child is a little older, the bond they share is so much more rewarding than he could have imagined.  I’m looking forward to that, quite a bit.

That went a bit off topic, but it was on my mind and I figured I’d share it.  In other non-baby related news, I was promoted at work recently.  I’m pretty happy about it, even though it doesn’t mean anything from a job function/responsibility aspect.  Just a change in the title.  Even financially it doesn’t make a difference really.  The important part for me is being recognized for the hard work that I’ve been doing.  This particular promotion has the ‘typical’ timeframe being at 3-5 years in this department/role.  With a ‘minimum’ of 2 years.  I was promoted in 1 year 9 months.  Go me.  Unfortunately, that doesn’t tell the whole story.  I’ve been with the company for roughly 4.5 years now, with a bit of prior experience too.  So having it take ‘that’ long for the promotion is a bit of a bummer.  However, the first few years were in a completely different department, with entirely different responsibilities and skills needed.  So for being in this completely ‘new’ role (to me) I call it a success.

What is even better about this though, is that I’ve been thinking of changing things up for a bit now, as I’m actually quite bored in my current role.  I want to shake things up a bit.  Have some bigger shifts in responsibility.  Less gradual, more sudden.  My manager has been very open about this, as well as with plans for future staffing within the group.  In the last couple of months several ideas for creating new roles or merging responsibilities/etc have been taking place.  This is the first time that I’ve actually seen/been involved with someone trying to actively help me drive my own career.  One of the perks of where I work is that everyone has the ability to drive their own career.  That couldn’t be more true.  Without that, the position I’m in still wouldn’t even exist.  But some managers don’t seem to offer much help with the career growth.  The employees really have to push it.  And then only if you are very successful will you actually reach that goal.  Good and bad.  The part that makes me happy at work right now, is that while I’m still very actively pushing and driving my career, now management seems to be investing more time and effort to helping me out.  It has been a wonderful change, because while nothing is in-stone yet, the ideas and tentative plans being mentioned are extremely encouraging and motivating.  I honestly don’t think I’ve been this encouraged as I have been in the last two months than I have my entire career.

There is still nothing set in stone by any means.  This month is the time for planning for staffing/budgets/etc for next year, so depending on how that all shakes out, maybe we’ll be able to get another new position created, and I’ll snag it.  I’ve been being groomed for a management position for a few years now, and so far with the tasks I’ve been doing, I seem to be well suited for it (others’ words, not mine).  But for the last several years I’ve still had in the back of my mind various ‘what-if?’ scenarios.  In addition to those, there has been something about hardware description languages (HDL) that I seem drawn to.  Where I work now is actually the only company out of all of my offers out of college in which I didn’t go in to VHDL design.  The current idea is to transition off of my (project) management path and on to a development path, focused around VHDL design.  We’ll see if it works out.  I am hoping that it does, and then I’ll be able to revisit this in a year and a half or so and see what it is that I really want to do.  I’m very grateful for my patient mentors and the opportunities they are seeking out for me to explore – all to ensure I stay happy, and stay with the company.

Everything continues to change/grow/evolve in some regards.  Life priorities, goals, ambitions, desires, etc.  If I look at my ‘dream’ car, for example, that I wanted in the mid-to-late ’90s was a concept car, the Ford GT90.  What was it about that care that I liked so much?  The looks, the rarity, and the theoretical performance?  Around the same time, I was also very interested in Kawasaki Ninja motorcycles.  I never had much of an interest in other brands.  If you look at the two motorcycles I’ve owned, they were both Ninjas.  Interesting.  Fast forward a bit, and my ‘dream’ cars took an interesting turn.  I fell in love with the 2002-3 Nissan SE-R SpecV when I saw one in Phoenix.  I ended up buying one (same color, actually) a few years later.  It was awesome, and practical.  Most recently, I’ve been infatuated with the Lotus S2 Exige, and other extremely nimble, lightweight, uncommon sports cars.  I’ve actually gotten pretty serious about purchasing one, and nearly pulled the trigger multiple times, but I knew it wasn’t the time.  Is that still my current ‘dream’ car? Yes.  Cost has little to do with my ‘dream’ car, it is just a goal.  Especially since my previous one I actually purchased.  I’ve also tried keeping the ‘goals’ a bit realistic.  I’d love to have an Ascari A10, I think it is a beautiful piece of machinery.  But it is just not going to happen, and I’m fine with that, hence it not being a dream car, because it is unattainable.  Why have a dream when it isn’t something you can (currently) realistically work towards?  It is more fun to have a dream that is a stretch, but attainable, rather than something that you keep longing for forever.  If I lived in Europe these cars would definitely change.  While I do love the Lotus, my selection of cars would be much greater overseas.  I could see myself in a TVR Sagaris, for example.  Not only does my ‘dream’ car change every few years, even my definition of ‘dream’ changes regularly.

Overall, my point is, while some things may look like a drastic change, if they are broken down a bit more, one can see the subtle evolution that is taking place.  This is within our personalities, careers, beliefs, lifestyles, and even our health.  Not rocket science.  Common sense, really.  This isn’t a new revelation by any means, just something I’ve been thinking about lately.  And just to be clear, just because I have a child now does not mean my ‘dream’ car has evolved to a minivan – that just isn’t going to happen, period.

3 Responses to “Ever Changing, Ever Growing”

  1. There may come a time when a minivan doesn’t seem so bad. Wwhen you have a few kids, and the have a few friends that that are all going somewhere together. But that is many years in the future!

    Lately, my dream “cars” have all been sailboats.

  2. Too funny about your ‘minivan’ comment. In all honesty, I can’t picture you driving one 🙂 Congratulations on your promotion!

  3. I love this. Congrats on all the chanes in life! I have a dream minivan just do you know. Did you know your toddler has a much harder time slamming your head in the door of a minivan? Oh and it’s harder for them to kick you none stop in a minivan while you are driving. Sigh… My most dream minivan has sound proof glass seperating the front and back seat, just like a limo or a high class taxi. Just thinking about it is making my heart flutter.

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