A Year of Reflection and a Year to Move Forward

Sometimes it's just easier to know thyself.

{% notice info %} 📸   Photo by Ben Sweet (opens in a new tab) on Unsplash (opens in a new tab) {% endnotice %}

I was sitting in the bathroom, talking to myself1, reflecting on lots of details about my life and the past year.

One of the things I thought about and have been thinking about since I lost my job nearly a year ago, is just how bad a job I did of understanding myself.

They tried to warn me

The guy who would become my boss briefly when I got the offer, said to me on the third interview:

This is consulting. It's fast paced. You sure you can handle it as a first job?

I remember it as clear as day: it was in the middle of the summer, 2019. I was in my downstairs bathroom. I hitched a bit.

Fast paced for a first job

I quickly dismissed my hesitation and said, "yeah, sure, no problem. I can do it."

I could not do it.

To be fair to me, the company didn't do a good job of training me, they didn't let me fail to learn as they couldn't; everything needed to move and move fast, with little money to do it. I was out on an island, expected to take on the frontends of four projects with zero prior professional experience and they knew this. They knew I was a junior dev. And when I asked them why my title didn't reflect that, I got a really awful non-answer.

But if I had listened to my gut instincts, I wouldn't have taken it and I wouldn't be in the position I am in now.


I also wouldn't have realized my known failure modes (opens in a new tab) and the fact that building projects (opens in a new tab) is greater than the tutorial feedback loops.

I wouldn't have gone wild and rebuilt my porfolio from basically scratch (opens in a new tab).

I wouldn't have jumped to a new language to build a static site generator (opens in a new tab) in Ruby.

And I most definitely wouldn't have blatantly ripped off (opens in a new tab) Fidalgo Dev's FAQ site (opens in a new tab)

{% notice tip %} 💡   Have a general understanding of your skillset before applying for a job. No, you don't need all of the listed requirements, but make sure you've built something of note, preferrably not from a course tutorial, and added it to your GitHub or portfolio. It's important to know that while impostor syndrome is a real thing, sometimes you really just aren't ready for that first job yet, and that's okay. Keep working at it, get better, and when you do get an offer, you won't end up writing a post like this. 🤷🏽‍♀️ {% endnotice %}

Depression, listlessness, and finding my way

I wrote a post on my personal blog explaining just where I am at, emotionally, mentally, and getting a bit into my past a bit.

I am not linking it here; it's far too personal for this particular blog, but suffice it to say, it's been a real battle. I know it has been for everyone, but not everyone has the past I do and the current healing of that past I am doing right now, jobless, in the middle of a pandemic, with a sick mom that I am taking care of.

There are times I don't get out of bed and I know I need to, I know I have to build projects, apply for jobs, LinkedIn posts, writing blog posts, etc but there are days I don't even know if I am going to survive let alone do any of that.

It's a hellscape right now, but somehow I manage. Somehow, we all are.


  1. As one does...eh hem

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