Monday, June 15, 2015

"Keep Going"

Even Aspies have to keep going beyond their doubts.

As some of you are aware, April was the start of the SQL New Blogger Challenge. It was a blog every Tuesday during the month. At one point I had sent out a tweet where I referenced the blog challenge having ended.

I was taking it literally, as the challenge was issued for the month of April. Very much something I would do. However, the point of said challenge was to keep blogging, as notable names (Dwain Camps and Steve Jones, who runs the incredible SQL Server Central) in the professional network pointed out:
Okay, so this was me being very literal and believing the actual 'challenge' was over, per the original blog. The thing is, to keep going was the actual challenge subtext. While I always expected to become more consistent with blogging, the point of the challenge, from how I now interpreted this, was to get bloggers started during April and see critiques. Still, the point was also...don't quit. There's always more to talk about. During the month of May, I had hit a dry spell and fell down on the challenge of continuing, taking it way too literally for my own good. So it felt like my motivator was gone, but obviously it's good to blog for more than therapy - rather that others can get perspectives.

It got me thinking about how "keep going" is a motto that should apply to me often at this moment. Particularly as I go through a challenge for a new opportunity since the old one ended. I did not expect the job search to take me past the end of my severance from my previous job, but then I found myself among greater numbers of competition, and with less total opportunities that fit me. My frustration has increased after going 0-for-6 during the in person interview phase and finding myself not qualified enough for some positions.

Still, keep going.

After talking with a couple peers from my profession, I'm about to schedule my 70-462 exam for the MCSA. Yes, SQL Server is on 2014, and we just got the 2016 preview, but it was pointed out that having certification now could work in my favor during this period between jobs. I've noted a few times before that I tend to think about all the accolades too often. However, I definitely can follow the advice here. If I can hustle my way through the final two exams, then this will help greatly, as I haven't heard on when the SQL Server 2014 exams will start. As I mentioned in a previous post, I'm working on some C# and perfecting my Python in the meantime. I am not even close to mastering them, but I've kept going this way I could expand my skill set. More languages will be coming, for sure. The hope is that I can use these skills to be a data architect across a full stack.

Work is one area of perseverance. There is also the I was struggling to find a way to get support groups started in the Triangle area. The person who was originally going to help me had dropped out a while back, and I put the project on hold. However, I then got some traction after getting connected with a person in Cary and another in Fayetteville. Problem now was trying to get some interest from others on the spectrum who often turn to the online forums more than in person discussions.

Still, keep going.

Turns out there are already a couple of them out there from a social standpoint, and I have attended a couple of the meetings to get interest. I got word that the Wake County regional libraries can host us as long as I choose one day out of the month. We're now attempting to set it up with some funding to have a meeting in August/September, since I've reached at least double digits for people interested. I was also able to pivot back to the ability to talk with parents of children, just as I had done once last year. I've been asked to speak at the Autism Society of North Carolina's Transition to Adulthood series for Wake and Orange Counties, after contacting the organizer. To be proactive is to win.

I think back now to my childhood. When I was diagnosed, the doctors believed I had smarts, but may end up dependent on others because of motor skill deficiencies. I had even less of a grasp on sarcasm then (it's just a tenuous grasp now), and I struggled with interactions outside of my family. Basic tasks like eating did not always come easy, as sad as it could be.

Still, keep going.

I eventually learned how to adapt, and channeled that into a college degree, a profession, and writing a blog about this stuff. My parents were able to push me to observe what others did, so I had an idea on customs and how to do basic tasks for myself. If anything, I became more "normalized" in a sense. We know that story.

You also now know the moral of this blog post, as much as I dislike calling them morals on here.

Time for me to keep the blog up more regularly.

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