I so need to see The Lego Movie.
I feel like I'm coming out of a stress tunnel or something. It's not that life has been overwhelmingly bad or negative, there were just a lot of things that added up to cause me to be a little tweaked out, a lot of the time. Getting the house to a final and definite place was awful. When it was clear that SeaWorld wasn't going to get the head count to make my job full-time, then I also had that on my plate. It wasn't an issue of finding work as much as it was finding work that I wanted. I'm pretty zen about starting the new gig because everyone at the company impressed me so much.
But there's a lot to feel good about right now. I'm wrapping up a year at a job that I'm pretty proud of. I leave feeling like I really accomplished some important things with lasting impact. I also learned to exercise patience in doing the right things, something I learned from my first boss at Microsoft years ago. I'm a lot more confident in my leadership ability, in part because I better understand how and when to collaborate. People have been very complimentary and even bummed out about my departure, which I did not expect. It's that thing where I might not need validation, but it sure feels good to get it anyway.
It's also an interesting time professionally, because the tools I generally work with are getting more interesting, and I'm really energized about all of the new stuff I can learn about. It's an amazing time to work in software. I feel like there are things that I can imagine that I can bring to life more easily than I could have even five years ago. For someone who loves to create, that's a big deal.
Closing in on the first anniversary of our move to Orange County, I feel surprisingly comfortable and at home here. I wish our social circle was a little more broad, but I have a small network of people to associate with from work, we have good neighbors, and of course my "bestie" lives here too. We can get around to things easily, we're learning about more places to go to eat and play, we're involved in a local charity, and I'm starting to get a little more engaged in what goes on with local government.
Similarly, we're feeling at home in our, uh, home. I get warm fuzzies knowing I'll be working from it much of the time. I'm not generally about "stuff," but I like that we have a great kitchen and comfortable spaces to relax and play. I can't predict that we'll live here forever, but I'm comfortable enough to not feel transient. I haven't felt that way in a long time.
More importantly though, I think I'm just looking forward to having a week off between gigs. This year was rough. I don't remember any time where I went a year without taking any significant time off. Much of it was due to the savings marathon leading to the down payment on the house, since not working when you're contracting means you're not getting paid. I was able to come up for air during the extended weekends for the cruises and our visit to Kings Island, but I haven't had a week off since before we moved. I've got ten days coming up where I don't have to think about anything work related at all.
I'm thankful for this pile of awesomeness right now. Life has its waves, for sure, and it's nice to be at the top of one for awhile. There are exciting new adventures starting right now!