Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Is feeling burnt out

I have not had a break since January this year. I don't know why it gets to me, but it somehow has, this time. Well, actually I haven't been on a holiday since mid 2010. And even that holiday and the one earlier, in late 2009 was pretty hectic. Our team basically went on a weekend and took a couple of days off the following week and went to hill stations and the like. And then we came back and slogged as usual. So the last time I really put up my feet and enjoyed the feeling of having absolutely nothing to do was in 2008, which was between the time I completed my under-graduation and my joining date. Well, I did go and have some fun in Mysore, so that wasn't too bad. But I'm sure you get my point. The last time I did absolutely nothing was in 2008, and a couple of wonderful weeks last winter in Chicago. I made a mistake of working till the last minute and then immediately flying off to the US to start grad school. I should really have taken a month or so off and relaxed.

Now, at grad school I joined this place where I work part time. It pays my tuitions, so that's good. But it's part time work that takes too much time. And energy. And this irritating professor that I work for made me agree to work over the summer. Which I should never have agreed to. But the money. It paid my fees. So I stayed. Everyone else left for a summer internship. And went to all these exotic locales. Here I was, stuck in this lab with not a single day's holiday. No, not one. Apparently grad students who are "research assistants" are on par with faculty. Apparently grad "research assistants" have to work the same time as faculty. Apparently they have to be in the lab and work on their "research tasks" at all times they don't have classes regardless of how many hours they are actually employed for. Apparently civil engineering professors have exquisite knowledge of the ins and outs of software development and know enough to dictate terms constantly under the implied threat of being fired.

I wish I could just throw the kitchen sink at it and say I was done for good. I wish I could just study with nothing else to do. I wish I had taken the decision to do an internship and get away for the summer. Or even go home for the summer. Three months of heavenly bliss, that would have been. With cricket in the week-ends. How I miss cricket!

But I cannot. I cannot do any of that. Not because I need the money to pay for college fees. But why am I paying the fees if all I do is work? Why is there this humorous catch-22 where I work to pay fees so that I can attend college where all I do is work?

This isn't going to end any time soon. It's going to be the same way till the end of May. At least I get a whole month off then. Or maybe even more. One and a half months. Solid. That's the only thought that keeps me going.