When tomorrow dawns, it would be exactly eight years since the day I started my career. The day I set foot inside the Infosys campus in Bangalore, 26 July, 2004. Along with some two hundred others who joined in my batch, starry eyed and fresh from college, I walked into the prestigious compound brimming with pride, for I had hit the jackpot in the very first chance by landing a plum job right after college. I made scores of friends in Infosys, of which Gowri, Viswadhara, Pratap, Deepak and Krishnakumar and myself formed a close knit group. In fact, it comes back to me now, I had even formed a personal folder in my Outlook for mails from this gang, and called it Infyclosknit! The girls of the group, Gowri, Viswadhara and myself stayed together during the training period, and along with the boy hung out both during weekdays and weekends. Like the lines from the song Summer of '69, “those were the best days of my life”.
Today, when I look back at these eight years, it is astonishing to find how much all of us have moved on. All the three girls are now out of Infy, while the guys are still sticking on. Ironically, I was the first to leave the company. Thinking about my reasons now, I remember becoming too restless, feeling stuck. The kind of work I was assigned caused a fatigue to set in, and that was the reason I cited for moving on. However, in retrospective, I realize that I might have moved on anyways, because, over the years I have found out that I don't remain content with one kind of work for too long. After working in a service company I worked next in a captive, and thrived in that environment for sometime. However the fatigue followed me soon enough, and within two years I was working just for the sake of it, and losing interest in what I was doing.
Thankfully marriage gave me the ticket to fly out of my second job and land in a third. The third stint was the shortest and I must say, the least productive. Though I say least productive, it is amusing to note that it is only in this job that I got not one but three awards for my work, and that too in a short duration of 6-7 months. I conceived soon after I joined and so within an year stopped working. After an year of being completely busy with my infant, for the past year I have picked up my long forgotten hobby of writing, which had grown a bit rusty, dusted and polished it, and am now dabbling freelance writing.
My husband has teased my many times about my career path – I studied biology in school, Instrumentation and Control in my Engineering, worked in Software and am now playing in literature. Where the hell I think I am headed? I have no answer, because I wonder the same thing myself. Towards peace of mind? Maybe. Biology I did because I liked it, ICE I did because that was the only subject left in free seat category during the Engineering counseling in one of the few respectable colleges. Engineering was what I chose for graduation because that was what everyone seemed to be doing at that time – it was the in thing. Similarly, software industry was the place most engineers headed after their degree, and I followed suit, and ended up meandering aimlessly in the world of Mainframes for nearly 6 years, not to mention the world of Finance and Capital markets, since that was the domain I worked in. And now, I have embraced English.
Looking back, this path is certainly a blindly followed one, heading to fall in the same well like others, just because others have been doing it. One thing I knew for sure since childhood is that I love English. I love to read and love to write in the language. Maybe, if I had learned to follow my heart in childhood, I would have taken up BA English, then went on to do MA, PhD, and so on. It definitely sounds a less glamorous option than the professional degrees, but I would have gotten into the world of writing much earlier, instead of the circumnavigation that I have done now. Maybe life would have been simpler and much more fun. Then again, may be it would not have! Like my spiritual beacon says, Providence has designs ready-made for us, of which we know nothing. We only see what is in the present and rue over it. We are nervous because we do not know what future holds in store for us, but if we care to introspect our past, we would see that every time we have been in a soup Providence has had a way of clearing up things for us.
One thing is for sure though. A resolve builds up in my mind as I write this and look up at my son stirring in sleep beside me. I will not impose my personal desire or the standard path that others are following on my son. Though, if he wants to follow it he is free to do so, but if he wants to try something else, say become a painter, or a sculptor, I will certainly give him the freedom to try out his luck. I know it is easier said than done. Therefore I implore the Providence to give me the strength to stand by my resolve. Maybe this post will come in handy to bring me down to earth on days when I get carried away by my desire to see my son win the rat race.