Oh, so much to get caught up on again. This time it is illness that has had me down and behind: Severe Bronchitis. I laid around all day yesterday, miserably unable to breath and coughing like a mad woman. Today, I think my scent is starting to peek out behind the sinuses.
I guess it wasn't allergies; I suppose that is a relief. In the past year, I have been sick more than I have the entire proceeding decade. My co-worker says it is the back and forth between two climates (she did the same thing for 5 years and said she was constantly battling sickness). I tend to agree and, combined with the stress of being away from my sons and home, the every week commute and the crap work doles out, I think I am at the limit of what I can physically muster. I am tired of being sick, sick of being tired.
So, I was given a choice this week. I am standing at the proverbial crossroads. One path is, as every fairy tale demands, wrought with unknown and the other one is the one most would take, especially in our economic down times. My employer has offered 300 of us an opportunity to take a voluntary separation with an incentive. Now, the money is hardly great, but it's not bad either (represents a couple of months of salary). If I take it, I have to stay separated for 5 years (or pay it back).
On one hand, the choice would allow me to go home. I could find another job after a month or so of downtime. On the other one, I worked hard to get to where I am and I would basically be dumping this career. On one foot, I really am not in love with this job and the way the supervisors treat us (can you say 'military complex'?) and maybe leaving the path would proverbially open up some new door. On the other toes, I am one of 88 who do my job in the US and the chances of finding a similar (well-paid and benefited) job is going to be difficult, especially in hard hit Northern Indiana. Last, I love KY. I also know that my family is not moving there any time soon.
The main thing is this represents an opportunity to bail out before it gets worse. There are many, many rumors about what is going to happen and many involve dismantling some of our programs. In other words, I could get a lateral transfer to god knows where if I choose to stay and rough it out for the sake of my salary and position. I have no intentions of straying further from my boys, so I would have to voluntarily separate anyway...for free! We are being kept in the dark for now. If I take the incentive plan, my job ends by April 30...just like that!
So, now I am just standing here in the dark woods looking at these paths...
I am really curious about your feedback. I've run out of hands and feet!