I like to stretch myself. Perhaps its the dilettante archetype in me, but I’m a fan of dabbling, trying things out, and seeing if I’m interested in something for the long term. It sometimes catches my husband off guard, when I come home with a hand drum that I lovingly etch with henna like designs, in a vain attempt to learn the art of drumming (because, how cool would a drum circle be?!). Or the time that I became a Reiki Level 2 practitioner (not the whim), but went home and purchased a $150 massage table (because I was going to become a traveling reiki practitioner?), that we conceived our son on (but I digress).
The problem with dreams, like my desire to write a memoir, or two books of poetry (yes, with specific concepts), or learn Hindi for real, is that people don’t understand them. And then I get discouraged.
I’m learning to code.
Yeah, right, huh? I’m 32 and had zero interest in anything computer science related until I read this article, and see things about women in technology, and figured “what the heck.” Currently there are zero grand ideas of entering into the tech workforce, wearing power suits and writing Lean In 2, but I did manage to make a numbered list and insert a hyperlink into a webpage.
I’m starting small.
PLUS, I feel like as an educator, it’s not fair for me to think that I “have it all,” or “have arrived,” in my skill set or ability to no longer feel dumb as dirt in trying to figure out something new.
Besides, from the very limited lessons I’ve completed, what I’m learning is a shit ton like learning the rules of syntax, like where the fuck do I put the ; in a sentence? What does a ; even do. And why aren’t … used more in real writing? Deep questions from my brain.
And as much as I’d like to connect with people in my life, the challenge with doing that, is that I might go out on a ledge and tell a coworker that I’m learning to code in my free time at work (instead of being on Facebook/Pinterest), and her response was:
“Why? Why would you do that?”
Uh, because I want to? Do I have to justify why I would want to learn a new skill?
This happens a lot.
I don’t know, do I freak people out or something? Does my interest in things in intense bursts make them feel inadequate? I can’t figure it out, but the response made me want to keep my activities secret until I’ve mastered something reasonably well. That way nobody else is in on the whirlwind of interests that come and go like little mini tornadoes, leaving me a tinier bit exposed to amazing things, but not a master in anything.