I got all four of my wisdom teeth extracted the day after my birthday this year. A lame way to celebrate my birthday? Sure. But I was actually pretty excited because I have been waiting to do this operation for a while now (waiting to have health insurance, waiting to have the appropriate amount of time off, waiting to have enough money). It got me thinking about life, about my life in particular. In part, I am reflecting because I am currently limited in what I’m able to do post-operation (lots of time to sit and reflect). But also because I am reminded again of the circumstances of my life and how it’s necessitation of self-sufficiency has impacted the timeline in which I can expect things to happen to me / my life. I am a year older now and not only is that truth sinking in, I am accepting it and I am perfectly okay with it.
One of the biggest things that come to mind when considering the things I want to do but have had to put off is the pursuit of learning / working with coding. During my undergraduate career, I took a few Computer Science classes and found them to be a lot more engaging and interesting than my economics courses, but I couldn’t change my major because I was paying for tuition with a scholarship from the Department of Economics (there were many other reasons, but the financial barrier was by far the biggest). Instead, I minored in Computer Science and sought out opportunities where I could integrate coding into the things I was already doing. As an economics major, many of my internships, research assistantships, and academic projects involved data analysis, so I googled for programming languages that were good for statistics and learned Python as a result. Similarly, in my current professional role, I found that it did not involve as much programming as I had expected, so I completed the #100DaysOfCode challenge to fulfill my desire to continue coding. Even now after the 100 days, I continue to learn new programming languages and frameworks in my free time after work. I am also learning how to contribute to open-source as an apprentice in RubyMe!
So what’s the point in saying all this? Definitely not to complain or sound negative about my circumstances. I completely acknowledge the ways I am fortunate, such as being able to attend college at all, unlike my parents who were only educated up to an eigth grade and high school education level. The point is to relay how the acceptance that my timeline is perhaps prolonged gives me hope that I may be able to achieve the things I want to in life, it will just come at a slower rate (but still come!). And if it doesn’t, I will do what I have always done which is to change and adapt to my environment, play the hand I’ve been dealt the best I can.