Change It Is A-Coming–Or Is It?

I will be the first to admit that I don’t do change easily. I have learned to roll with the punches over the years but it was definitely a learned behavior and not one that came to me naturally. I can remember being extremely disappointed both as a small child and a young adult when plans were changed suddenly and I was forced to adjust my expectations. Now as an adult I realize that stuff happens and even the best of intentions can fall awry when confronted by circumstances beyond anyone’s control, but back then it could cause quite an upset of emotion and I would be surly for days.

I’m thinking about change because tomorrow I have to go bid for my new schedule for the next three months at work. As a transit bus operator we bid four times a year for our schedules.  After almost 18 years on the job I am now number 10 in seniority so I have a fairly decent selection of schedules that I would be willing to drive. But here’s the catch–I don’t like to change. I drove the commuter route to the Bay Area for 13 years because 1) I felt guilty if I let someone with less experience drive it 2) I thought I liked the drive over the hill every day vs dealing with passengers and bus stops in the wee hours of the morning and 3) I just hate change.

Each schedule consists of something we call paddles. A paddle is the schedule of routes that we do each given day, with breaks written in, etc. Some schedules drive the same paddle every day. For instance, the schedule I drive now starts off with the driver shuttle, a service we insisted on for the early and late drivers to take them either from the transit center to the bus yard in the morning or the bus yard to the transit center in the evening, depending on where they start or end and where their cars are parked.  After I finish the shuttle I hop on a bus and do two rounds of a route. Then I take a break and come back and drive two more routes and go home at 145 PM. It’s a sweet, sweet schedule and I really like it.

However, the schedule actually “belongs” to a driver with more seniority than I who gave it up for the winter months so he could take a late in because he has t take his kids to school in the bad weather. So I know my time is limited on this schedule and I’m kind of bummed. I have no idea what he is going to bid for so that means I have to actually go to the bid instead of sending my proxy like I have been doing.  Sigh.

But here is my dilemma. I really, really like the schedule I am on now. IF the driver above me doesn’t take it that means it will be available to me, which sounds great, right? I get the schedule I like and I’m use to and life goes on for the next 3 months like the bid never happened. My issue is the fact that I really should take a four/ten schedule. Right now I do a five/eight, which means I work five days a week, eight hours a day give or take. But because of this I have to work every Saturday to try to earn that extra money I need to fix my truck. This six days a week is starting to get to me and I dread climbing out of bed on Saturday mornings, knowing I only have a short amount of time before I have to leave and go to work for the entire day. My Saturdays are always a late in/late out so I don’t get home until after 730 PM. This means I have to spend my Sunday trying to catch up on laundry, house work, etc. And then Monday I go right back to work.

If I took a four/ten I would only work four days a week, ten hours a day with three days off. I could then work that fifth day ostensibly and have two days off in a row and still earn that extra money I need. I really should do this and there is actually a schedule that goes in early and gets off fairly early and I don’t mind what it drives every day. But the temptation of the schedule I’m driving now hangs there in front of me and I know I will want to cave in and take it if it’s still there when I go in tomorrow because  I HATE CHANGE! Even when its good for me I find myself choosing to stay with the known and comfortable rather than moving on to the better choice.

I have to get dressed and head to work now. I really, really hate working so many days  in a row and I have to keep that in mind when I go to the bid tomorrow. Plus, and here is where it gets sticky, the thought is in my head that I could work TWO extra days a week and make that money WAY faster and get my truck up and running in HALF the time!!!  I hate being in my own head sometimes!

So how do you deal with change? Do you embrace it as a good thing or run from it as if the Devil himself is trying to drag you into the pit of hell? And how do you make decisions? Do you do the grown-up thing and do what is best for you or do you stick to what you know and hope it turns out for the best? I’m kind of hoping JR takes that schedule back because then the decision will be so much easier to make! Is that a bad thing to wish for?! Help a girl out here!