Inspired by a lady in my Lambda School slack channels, I think it's time to share a short piece of my journey as a person. This affects everything I do, including coding.
I am a spoonie. I fight every day to balance my low energy with my high desires to do and be more. You see, I have multiple chronic illnesses. The shortlist includes chronic fatigue, daily headaches that flair into migraines at times, and pain in my feet from diabetic neuropathy.
I'm also highly random and pretty disorganized. I am trying to do better. I drive my husband crazy with my disorganization and sloppy habits. He's a champ though and only has a fit once it gets really bad. And his fits are so low key... but that's a story for another day, maybe.
When you put all this together, you have a perfect storm for struggle. With the pain, I even get what many of us call brain fog. It's pretty much what it sounds like and makes learning an interesting challenge.
I can't tell you the best way to work around challenges like this. I can tell you what is (somewhat) working for me. I schedule all my learning at times when I have less brain fog-- which happens to be late evening and into the wee hours of the morning. My sleep schedule is messed up when it comes to early morning appointments or anything that requires me to be aware before 11 AM thanks to this.
I also tend to work until I am not able to each evening. I try not to push too far, so I don't use up spoons meant for the next day. But I do like to finish a project as soon as I start it almost.
Your most important task is to find what times work best for different types of tasks. Mindless tasks like cleaning, email processing (like sorting emails into folders, deleting what isn't important, etc), or even bathing are often best scheduled when your brain fog is at it's highest.
Other things like learning, work tasks, and even self-care like reading or meditating will likely not work well if your brain fog is high. You will eventually see a pattern for your fogs, and can then begin to mold your life around your best times for each.
Now, I'd like to share some things that matter to me--- equality. For everyone, everywhere! But let's look at tech in particular since it's a field I am entering!
Lambda School! I am blessed to have chosen a school that supports us all equally. They also have a decent ratio of male to female, colored to white, trans and cis-gendered.....And this extends to faculty and staff. No matter what other "faults" this young school has, so far inclusion is not one of them.
nothing. I will never claim to be an expert at anything. I believe there is always something we can learn no matter how much we think we already know.
- Ask smart, respectful questions.
- Ask how can I support you.
- Speak up when you see discrimination, harassment, or anything that you wouldn't want happening to you.
- Just be kind.
There are a lot of us looking for careers that will allow us to work from home. From childcare needs to chronic illnesses, the workforce is changing.
Please keep in mind that you are capable. You CAN do it, regardless of any struggles you face. You ARE worthy. And you have an ally in me, no matter what you may be facing.
Facebook post with the text for spoon theory: https://www.facebook.com/bydls/posts/10157956935269729?__tn__=K-R