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From Weak to Proficient

Job hunting is difficult. Almost dishearteningly difficult. As an example, one day, an interviewer might say that I should learn a language for their prospective company, despite my protests of pointing out that I am at best a junior developer, and thus would need to spend some time adapting, or at worst have done an undergraduate tutorial course in it. Inevitably, because I'm still actively attempting to start my career in code, I agree to their request. So I study and subsequently do their assessment, all the while remaining aware of my actual level; wary of overconfidence. Predictably, imagine my lack of surprise upon the response that they would rather have someone with some experience working on a production level application in that language.

Nevertheless, I still say to keep chugging and keep working with the idea that these sleepless nights will one day pay off. In my case, things are probably going to get even worse before they get any better; recently-ish left my place of employment due to certain conflicts of interest. I'd rather not go into detail but for those who know me in real life, I thank you for your continued support and encouragement. I would like to say that you guys have brought me a long way, I tell you as much fairly continuously, but I'm also going to take some credit for the effort output.

A special thank you goes to one person in particular who believes in me and has continued faith in my progress. If you ever read this, < super emotional words here> ...sorry, I still can't bring myself to do that on even a public platform.

Enough digression. All of that being said, one thing that these continuous examinations have allowed me to see is my own growth in familiarity with a variety of languages; even if that involves spending a day learning something I've only seen in passing (or seen many years in the past). These things, these small victories are what reminds me that I started doing this for a reason. Even though many times, small victories are the only ones to be had.

In these cases, I like to remind myself of one little fact; in general, life is a sequence of these things. Whether or not they happen in succession or are sparse in their distribution, it becomes increasingly important to acknowledge when they happen; lest we become overwhelmed.

So even though I've not yet signed anything suggesting permanent employment, even though companies seem to all want formally trained developers or otherwise see an aspect of "computer science" on a resume, even though the population of people who use/understand Matlab or Octave is almost infinitesimal by comparison, I will accept that I've at least increased my level from when this all started not even two months ago.

If you're still on this journey with me, then you as well keep studying, keep growing, and do not forget why we began. Progress may be slow in comparison, but it's still progress.

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