I logged in to EVE last night for the first time in awhile and got asked, "where ya' been?"
Snarky Answer: Not in EVE.
Better Answer: Work is winning. I've not been burning extra hours, but have been arriving home exhausted each night. I've been struggling to make a coherent dinner, and after that I'm without sufficient energy to boot the EVE client. So I squander the evening on something else, mindless, and then generally fall asleep on the couch before retiring early. Weekends have been recovery and some quality time on the bicycle when I can sneak in the miles.
The interesting part is that work has been good. Excellent, even. Longtime readers will maybe recall that I switched offices in October. The first few weeks were tough. My coworkers viewed me skeptically and I was drastically undertasked. The holiday season was interesting as things began to click, and by late January I was firing on all cylinders and picking up task after task after task.
I find it stressful, but stressful in that hectic way. Every day is like trying to wrestle 27 squirrels into a minivan with all the windows open. There's a hundred things to do and I need to be in many places at once.
The old job was stressful in a highly negative way. The relationship with our east coast teammates had eroded to the point of being openly hostile. I came to work every day and argued against the idiotic (and in my business, downright dangerous/hazardous) decisions that were being made. And my counterparts were making them intentionally just to go against the advice my team provided. Every phone call was a fight; every email an argument. I came home mad every single night.
The old job was list trying to wrestle a grizzly bear into a minivan with someone holding a trash bag over your head tightly, suffocating you while you're trying not to get bit.
I heard from some of my old coworkers today. Their situation is miserable. Most are biding their time until options are presented and the office is closed down mid-next year. With pensions, buyouts, accrued vacation, and so on, they're in a position where it's better for them and their families that they "shut up and color" than resign outright like I did (although I got a pretty sweet deal and lost nothing in my transaction).
Contact from the old team made me pause and take stock of where I was. I'm busy. I'm tired. But I'm happy, and I haven't been able to say that in a few years.
Anyway, I'm still here. Work is winning. It's winning because I'm letting it. My change has been a net positive and the opportunities in the new organization are almost endless. I'm learning a ton. I'm making a difference.
But I'm also very, very tired.