I am excited, okay?

I am, it’s all inside though.

I’m having lunch with an ex-coworker a week ago. We’re catching up and he asks me what’s going on with me. I tell him about work and how that’s going, and I mentioned to him how I got into the MBA program at York.

“Congratulations man, ahahaha, buddy this is big news. You say it like it’s nothing!”, the excitement on his face not being reflected in mine.

Hmm… I guess it is big news. And I am excited, I really am. I’m not sure how more to show it. But I am. It’s just that I’m in purgatory right now.

I left a place where I thought I should have some say. Say in the design and direction of the software. I didn’t want full control, but I deserved to be heard. I didn’t feel that was happening nearly to the degree it should have. And when it did, I felt it was too late. If someone heard me a year and a half ago, we would be a year and a half ahead. Too little, too late. I loved the environment, I loved the business domain, but I couldn’t stand the technology. I couldn’t stand that I wasn’t in any position to improve it. I can’t sit there and watch. I slugged through a few years, I felt like I paid my dues and I just couldn’t bare to see things repeat themselves. We should have known better. We should have done better. But we constantly chose not to. I had to leave. You can give me a fancy job title and throw more money at me, but I’m not buying it. If I can’t make things better, I will go crazy.

Now I’m in a place where I haven’t done anything. Where I was, I felt as if I contributed enough to say and to be heard. Here, I’ve done nothing. I feel like an observer. I haven’t written much code in the last year, that simply wasn’t my job. Now I’m trying to get back into things. It takes more time than one would have imagined. Sadly, I haven’t been doing much coding on my own time. I’m rusty. So I find it odd that in a place where I haven’t contributed anything, in a place where they haven’t experienced me first hand, they’re ready and willing to listen to what I have to say. Not only that, they’re modifying portions of the system based on my input. Simply because the ideas make sense. Where I was before I just thought I was crazy.

It feels odd, it shouldn’t be like this. People shouldn’t just listen (even if they argue back and I have to prove the point in detail and draw diagrams and what not), I’ve done all this before and been pretty much ignored. So it feels odd. I’m almost offended. Hah. But I haven’t done anything. I don’t understand why they’re so willing to listen. I’ll eventually get over it, eventually I’ll have contributed something and found my place. But right now, I’m not in my comfort zone, but then I realize that I may never have been, ever. I have to balance this, I’m in a moment without balance.

Excited, yes. That I got in. In all honesty, I wasn’t expecting to get in. Or I thought I’d have to jump a few hoops. It can’t be this simple, right? How can it be? My final year marks weren’t spectacular and my GMAT scores were mildly decent. So how do I just get in? Yes, excited.

But I have to make schedules work with school and work. I’ve done this before, and this is not easy, school and work at the same time aren’t easy. So I’m sitting in the office of the Director of my department, trying to be as excited as I could be, explaining to her that I got in and mostly the courses I will take will be in the evening, but some courses will be in the afternoon. She says that she fully understands and supports the initiative I’m taking. “I see you as a leader, someone who has and can provide vision. Right now though, I need you in the code, so that when you say something later, you can say it with authority”. I don’t get it. She barely knows me. How does she see me as anything? Don’t get me wrong, I praise the Lord for the situation I’m in. But it’s as if something is amiss. I can’t quite put my finger on it.

But there is wisdom in what she says. I respect that. Having someone to mentor you is invaluable in this industry. It’s invaluable in life. Go find a mentor in whatever you’re doing. I’m in purgatory. I’m not quite yet settled in. It has been weeks. So you’ll excuse my excitement.

Most people just don’t get it. Not this purgatory or unsettled thing. Most people in the software industry just don’t get it. They’re in it because it was all the buzz, and it was a guaranteed pay cheque. Which is fine I suppose, you have to eat and cloth yourself. I understand. But the problem is that if you work with me, I’ll have issues. I have issues. Most people in the industry just suck. I have massive issues with this. It’s difficult to find people that don’t suck. When I was in India, I sat in about 15 or so interviews in a month, and not a single time did I say “hire”. It’s not much different here. I was particularly upset with the hiring practices where I was before, and got myself into the interviewing process. It’s hard to find good people.

So why am I saying this? Meh, I’m in purgatory. Eventually I need not to be. I can’t work for someone else for the rest of my life. Unless they’re in the 10% of people that don’t suck. I have to be working on something that is beyond me. I have to be doing something that I love, and something that people will love.

So, yeah. I’m excited. Hear me roar.

5 thoughts on “I am excited, okay?”

  1. heh, i understand. i’ve hired folk and put a level of trust in them more than they had earned at that point. i think that sets a person off base for a while, but also gives them the opportunity to ‘rise’ to the moment. i just find it odd that i’m on the receiving end now.

  2. I don’t understand why they’re so willing to listen.
    ha! thats what you get for staying in a place where not-listening was the norm. my sister’s in that kind of job now. and when she leaves, i’m sure she’ll be in for a (pleasant) shock.

    How does she see me as anything?
    adnan, i barely know you too and yet if i was hiring for a position like the kind you do, i would hire you. because it doesn’t take much to see the quality and potential in you. you won’t get it but perhaps that’s part of your charm (to employers). btw, this also addresses the question of how you got in with only decent grades & scores. i bet your essays were really intresting and fused with energy and intellectual curiousity.

  3. heh, i understand. i’ve hired folk and put a level of trust in them more than they had earned at that point. i think that sets a person off base for a while, but also gives them the opportunity to ‘rise’ to the moment. i just find it odd that i’m on the receiving end now.

  4. this is neat, i’ve gotten messages from software folk indicating that this post sums up what they feel about where they work and the software industry in general.

    methinks i shall write more on the software/business world… of course in a very feelings expressing rage kinda way… =P

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