I'll be back
Let's get it out of the way: I don't feel like writing anymore. But I feel I needed to write why exactly to tell myself it's alright.
In June, I finally accomplished one of my primary goals: getting my first job as a developer. And it has been brilliant so far.
It also means my brain is now chock-full of development-related reasoning, all day every day. There's no need to cram anything more in. Your brain needs to rest from time to time.
In my journey to become a developer, it struck me how difficult it is to switch from consumption (reading, listening, watching ...) to production (writing, coding ...). Yet, I've now reduced my consumption to a bare minimum. Instead, my production has skyrocketed, because next to work I'm also involved in a sizable side project.
What am I doing exactly? Well, we are reworking and extending a web application for a non-profit organisation. My focus is on the front-end (Angular) and my partner in crime is in charge of the back-end (.NET Core). The application is used by 50+ employees on a near-daily basis. Everything, from the infrastructure and code to the functionality, is in desperate need of improvement. And we're the proverbial MacGyver.
I've always hoped for a side project like this. Perhaps open-source would've been even better, but I won't complain. Really getting involved into an open-source project has a high barrier to entry. And unfortunately I never managed to cross that barrier.
Why am I doing this? Because let's face it: it is extremely challenging to do this as a side project. But we feel we're getting a lot of love back from the organisation itself, and we hope to improve their life and the life of their clients and employees over the course of multiple years.
Next to the love we're getting back, the experience I'm gaining is invaluable. The real-life interactions with an experienced back-end developer and the users of our application are something I cherish and hope to learn from as much as possible.
That's why my focus (outside of work) has now largely shifted to production, limited almost exclusively to this side project. In the future, I hope to share more details about the project here, but we'll have to discuss first what can and can not be disclosed.
Without a doubt, my father passing away in September was a huge blow. Every day brings back wonderful memories of the time we had together. He shaped who I am today and who I aspire to be tomorrow. And his passing forces me to contemplate just that.
This is not something I should take lightly. And for all the joy, tension and excitement that this deep-dive into software development has brought me, it will never compensate for the loss of a loved one. That's why I need to make time to answer the questions that will define my future.
See you soon!