Wet Bulb Time
When talking to my mom and relatives it was revealed to me that they feel mentally about 30 years old. That's when things stopped shifting and the main things that changed for them were circumstantial or habits based, but nothing transformational could be recalled. I think about this often. I am who I am now. It's a relief even if such things can't really be measured, nor is anything so vague entirely universal. But I'll take it because I really like who I am. At least when my brain isn't going high voltage haywire or sucked heavy in the mire (aka anxiety and depression). But I have felt for quite some time somewhat out of sync between who I am and how my life is being lived.
That was part of the impetus to move to Philadelphia, to do art, get a studio, find collaborators, make things, tap into the creative part of my brain that I frankly don't get to use enough, and the social part of me who had hidden away the parts that make me emit and receive light. But in trying also to find another fulfilling line of work to then fund my creativity (because the kind of creation I tend to express, may incidentally have a business model that could pair with it, I am always, inherently suspicious) and looking in the environmental sustainability space, as that is something that has deeply interested me and work that needs doing, it just wasn't happening for me. I applied to 40ish jobs and received quite a few kind rejection letters but not a single interview. While friends and family and youtube videos told me all the things I could have done differently and I tweaked and tweaked, I couldn't help but feel that this certainly wasn't a well lit path for me. My experience working in non-profits didn't seem to help like I had hoped, my well rounded experience being a jack of all trades, wasn't as impressive to the resume readers as it is to me (if they read my resume at all).
And so while living in a very high-strung always-anxious period at the end of last year, I made the decisions to go to one of these coding bootcamps. I am hoping that with a set of programming languages I may have at least an easier time being considered for work, and if I am lucky, have another way in which to get involved in environmental work. I guess they would somewhat limply be called "green tech jobs."
It's something I've always sort of held at arms length in the past, though I am savvy-ish when it comes to computers, I've certainly never been interested enough to learn more than a half day's worth of code to work on a website. And the idea of devoting myself to learning multiple languages, programs, systems, functions, it all seemed so overwhelming, and exhausting, considering I have so many ARTFORMS, paper folding techniques, 3D printing, woodworking, building sets for plays, and thousand other hands-on hungers I've yet to satisfy, it always seemed impenetrable.
And yet, I have been very disciplined in my new life in Philly. Setting up my apartment and my art studio, buying furniture, organizing, getting my plants set up, fixing things, leveling things in my wildly sinking kitchen, getting involved with new organizations, volunteering, finding the Arsenal bar, joining a gym, getting in a good rhythm with meal prep, meditating, going on dates, doing lower back stretches every morning, prepping for the next day before going to bed. I really, without knowing it, had been changing the way I approach each day in such a way, that perfectly aligned with this new challenge. Could I have gone to a coding bootcamp in the past? Perhaps not. But now, now has presented itself as the perfect challenge for my Philly chapter.
I'm still fuzzy on a lot of the details, and especially how I'm going to financially support myself (with a lot of help even) and get it all done, but as anyone who has known me a long time can attest, as indecisive as I can be, once my mind is made up about something big, it's pretty hard to unmake it. And so we go forward to learn a new skill and exit the jack of all trades day job era and make our way towards the coder person who has more money to support but less time to actually make art phase. I'm excited for the challenge, entirely unsure what the year is going to look like, except that I know it will be hard, confusing, emotional, and ultimately though it may take some time, worth it.