Thursday, March 05, 2015

Looking up to my daughter

A consultant has a tough life. He goes around solving other people's (organization's) problems and in doing so, has to travel constantly wherever those clients are. I have been a consultant for around 10 years now and have spent a year in Switzerland, half in Malaysia, 3 years in Dubai / Sharjah, a year in Kuwait and so on. Sound exotic and exciting … right ?

Well, unfortunately it isn't as glamorous as it is made out to be. You travel … and have to stay away from family. Parents obviously don't travel with you and spouse/kids can travel only if you are going to be stationed in a place for long term. So there are times, when you are all alone in a strange land feeling home-sick.

I lived alone in Switzerland and was alone in Dubai and then in Kuwait too. Luckily, my wife could join me during my year in Sharjah. For a family oriented person like me, it is not easy to stay away from parents and spouse/kids.

Earlier, I thought it were the formative years of my career and I need to take it in my stride but off late over the past few years, I have begun to question it. What am I achieving?

Yes, making some money by earning pretty decent salary in such a high paying consulting job which I enjoy doing BUT staying away from family. Isn't the price I am paying too high for the money made.

I lose out on all the moments, celebrations, events at home most of the times. I lost out on seeing my daughter crawl for the first time and likewise will miss her first walk. I will miss the first time she will say 'Papa' and the various new things she does on a regular basis.

Naah … its not worth it.

Last year, I shuttled between Mumbai and Kuwait. I would spend 2-3 weeks in both places alternatively. I would be gone from home for 2 weeks and when I came back, my few months old daughter would not even recognize me. She would stare blankly at me while she would smile at all the other members of the family. It would take a whole weekend of undivided attention and being with her that the familiarity would build up again and she would begin to smile at me too.

Those first moments after my return when she would not recognize me … were heart-wrenching on one side but also they spurred me to take a decision which is life and career changing. I decided that this shall not continue. I want to see the smiles of my family members or at least my wife aend kid on regular basis at close quarters. That's when the decision was taken to move out of consulting and get into a job role, where I could use my expertise for the company that has employed me and not their clients spread geographically.

Now, it is the moments that I spend with my less than a year old daughter that uplift my spirit and give me a sense of satisfaction in life. I look-up to her face and all I feel is serene happiness and calm.

I now dream of a staying with my whole family under one roof – parents, brother, wife and kids – and think would be a useful tool so checking out

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