A new adventure

2018 was a hard year for me. It wasn’t bad hard, it was mostly good hard, but that doesn’t take away that it was exhausting and full of uncertainty and worry. And a lot of that came from decisions we made, we chose to move and I’m so glad we did, but moving is hard and brings with it a lot of change.

But it was also hard on the work front. I’ve been freelancing for the last year and a half and my skill set is unique, which means it can be challenging to find projects. I worked with a coach for the last half of 2018 to help me figure out how to talk about what I do, how to land the types of projects I want to land, and how to be successful as an independent business person. And it was fantastic. I highly recommend working with someone, especially if you work for yourself, it was great to have a cheerleader, a person who held me accountable, and someone who helped me see things from a different angle.

And by the fall of last year, I was getting more project work, and it was right in the sweet spot of where I wanted to be; it was exciting. But the independent life also brings with it added stress of making sure I can keep that going. In November when talking with friends about some of my doubts and how I was going to be able to keep going, one of them linked me to a full time job that was dead center in my skill set area. This is a rarity, since front end development has really morphed into JavaScript development. But this job was about markup and CSS and accessibility and working with designers and it was remote! I got excited.

I talked with a lot of different people over the course of several weeks and as I did I got more excited. My future manager used Picard to describe his management style. One of the leaders of engineering talked about slow, measured growth and how they saw HTML and CSS as on equal footing with JavaScript. The designer talked about pairing to work on projects with engineering so everything is about being a team with good communication. And one of the developers talked about being trusted to do your work, whenever and however works best for you.

This was all music to my ears. And when the job offer came I felt more lucky than I can say. And I would also add that working with a coach gave me the confidence in the interviews I needed. I already spent a lot of time figuring out what it is I really like to do in my work and how to talk about it, so I was ready.

Today is my first day at Vox and I couldn’t be more excited. It’s a wonderful team doing really interesting work. And I’ll be honest, it’s almost 5 years since Editorially announced it was shutting down and I feel like I’ve come full circle in so many ways that it feels appropriate that I’m going to be working on the gazillionth version of the app I loved back then.