As I begin writing in my blog again I realize there has, for a long time, been a large hole in the middle of the week. My Wednesday Warrior posts have been lacking greatly. In 2010 only 3 posts were under this category and I have a feeling I know why. In an effort to change the direction of these powerful posts I would like to share the reasons I used to keep myself from writing what are usually such intimate posts.
Rough Waters In The Job Market
I had a successful 2010. I increased my value as well as finally moving into games programming and back to the west coast. However with that came great turmoil. January of 2010 saw me move my family from Wilmington to Chapel Hill, NC to work in Social Game development. That company got bought by Playdom in March and Playdom got bought by Disney in August. While my job survived the acquisition by Playdom it only lasted a few months after the acquisition by Disney. I was able to take the opportunity to find a new job on the other side of the country working with Gaia Interactive. Its a great gig and all has ended up well. So why did this stop me?
First on the list is me just trying to manage it all - and with a positive outlook. Writing these posts tend to bring buried emotions to the surface. This is usually a good thing. During this time I just didn't want to face those emotions. Second on the list is guilt. Everything continued to work out fine for me and other people are completely out of work and not having the luck I did. What did I have to complain about?
The truth is I am in the same bucket as everyone else right now. Worried about the security of my job. How stable is it? What will it mean if I lose my job? That meaning got even stronger with the other big storm that came through my life last year - health issues.
Health and the Family
My wife and I had been through a lot financially, and we've made ends meet with very little as we've had to. The job thing wouldn't have worried us as much if it weren't for the bombshell that dropped in May. Our 4 year old got diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. All the sudden having stable, good health insurance became an all encompassing worry that hit me hard.
Context: Parenting with Type 1 Diabetes
I'm guessing people reading this don't know much about dealing with type 1 diabetes, because I didn't until I HAD TO. My wife and I have to check his blood sugar several ( read 5-7 or more if things are wacky ) times a day. This includes the multiple times in the middle of the night because we don't want him to run high all night and do long term damage or worse have him go really low and not wake up in the morning. We manage his blood sugar through injections of insulin ( we now have an insulin pump thank goodness ) throughout the day. There are no days off for this. This is our Monday through Saturday, weekends and holidays too. Traveling? We must remember the diabetes supplies, emergency glucagon injection, drinks and snacks to get the blood sugar up if need be. Of course we need to remember the stuff other parents have to remember too. [End Rant]
So I went along and I was coping, or so I thought. I was now running on similar sleep to when the kids were first born fairly consistently and I was getting worried about the stability of my studio so I was looking into other options. I guess the worry of this came crashing down on me one night when I had my first ever anxiety attack ( I thought it was more dire ) and went to the emergency room in the middle of the night.
It turns out my all the tests showed I was perfectly healthy except for one thing they wanted me to get checked out with my doctor, low blood platelets. Long story shortened, I ended up seeing a hematologist because this wasn't an errant reading. Normal range for platelets is between 150K and 400K and at one point while measured I was as low as 12K. The danger of low platelets is that your blood doesn't clot so you end up losing a lot of blood - especially if you have internal bleeding that you don't know about. Luckily I had decent health insurance with Playdom and it payed for the majority of a very expensive set of infusions ( well one is still outstanding but it should be covered ) that put me back in the normal range just before I got a new job and moved across country.
Do you know the way to San Jose?
In December of 2010 I knew my position at Playdom was going away and rather than get moved into a different position with the uncertainties of how long that would last I did something crazy and took a job in San Jose, CA working with Gaia Interactive. I started the week before New years. I can say this, the change has been really good. I love the job and I'm already loving the area but moving is a huge burden I don't want to do for a long time. Remember those health problems I spoke of? Well, it took some time to get records sent and new doctors set up for the family. I'm still having problems getting the hospital to send my records to a new hematologist so I can make sure my blood platelets are doing well - we think they sent my son's records instead. Getting my oldest in school took quite some time because of the doctors issues and California has some requirements that North Carolina didn't. I spent the first month splitting my time between work ( learning the code base mostly ) and finding a house for us to rent. My wife was still in NC so I was looking without her and relaying as much info, pictures and video as I could. That was very worrisome, especially as our move date got closer, but in the end it looks like we found an amazing house with a great people as landlords. As you can imagine, there was much more to the move than these things but those are the ones that stick in my mind as the big stressors.
2011 and beyond
Now that I am settled ( mostly ), what is the plan for the future. Well, that will come out through future Wednesday Warrior posts. The point is, with the air cleared, I am ready to create in the warrior space again. I hope this post will help other warriors see that the path is not an easy one but if you live your life through love and commitment your inner warrior has the strength to see thing through.
I have already begun some personal quests for my inner warrior and I will sharing those in upcoming posts. Also, my new home has centralized me to some great sanctuaries for personal growth. I will share those as well.
Do you have a rough journey you have been or are currently on? I'd love to hear about it. Post it in the comments or post a link to your own post in the comments below. Until then, stay strong and love on.