So I guess that's the end of 28Ni and the start of 29Cu.
I neglected to do a write up covering 27-28, but that was a year of firsts: first year at &yet, buying our first home together, the first major addition to the family 👋🐕. Twenty-eight feels like it's been a year of contrasts - adventure and recovery, expansion and consolidation.
It's been a fun/scary/hard/exhausting/invigorating/everything year at &yet. We've had some real highs: some great projects; &yetconf was a huge success in every dimension that we as a company could care about; despite financial challenges we managed to get most of the team together in one place. But, there have been some lows too: consulting is a wax and wane kinda business, and if the waning happens at the wrong time, it hurts - bad, which means we had to say goodbye to some really great folks 😢. On the other hand it's forced us to recalibrate, refocus, and band together as a team which feels hugely positive.
Personally, it's been, well, hard. Remote work is hard, doubly so when you love your team who are all thousands of miles away. Remote work + timezones make it even harder. I've had to grow my confidence and belief in myself, learn to work well within a team, and latterly to help lead and trust in one. If anything, this year, and the team at &yet as a whole have taught me one thing: I am good at what I do. And pretending I am not is not constructive. It's still very hard to remember every day, but it's getting easier.
As of now I'm on a decided hiatus from conference speaking, but the last year has been fun.
I actually gave my JSConfEU talk last year, but it's been unbelievable to watch it's view count climb and climb this year. As of right now, it's passed 88,000 views, and is the third most watched video from any JSConf conference which blows my mind.
It was also a huge honour to keynote ScotlandJS this year (thanks Pete!) My mum even informed me she took some things I said with her to work!
It's hard to write this and believe it in the dead of winter (winter messes with my brain, big time), but this year has been a consistent slog forwards for my mental health. I tapered off my counselling appointments, and haven't been for ~6 months now. I'm probably due another booster set soon; but the efforts and effects of the time I spent in counselling continue to pay off for me daily. It's still a battle (depression is a persistent fucker), but I feel like I can at least bring my sword to battle it most days.
Looking out, I've seen a lot of people I know and love fight their own mental health battles. Some real lows which scare the bejeesus out of me, and some massive improvements too, which make me want to cry with happiness and scream from the rooftops how proud I am of them. To everyone who has fought their own fight, confided in me, and helped me this year: 💛Thank You 💜. And to anyone fighting battles I don't know about it, keep fighting, and if you need an ear, I have two (and Jasper has two very large ones).
I couldn't be more thankful for my parents for encouraging us to actually book a holiday this year, and to Hilary for planning and booking most of it <3 <3 <3. It was a relief and a privilege and a blessing to step away from a computer for more than a couple of days (I honestly can't remember the last time that happened), and explore the cities and countryside of such an incredible country.
We made it to three! 😍 (word count here is inversely proportional to my appreciation for H).
I don't have the words for how much one little dog with tiny legs, and giant ears, has changed my life. Only pictures. Lots and lots of pictures.
Thanks! I don't tell you enough, but thanks for making life better 🎉.