And so it begins.

I have been toying with the idea for a while now that maybe I really don’t want to wait to apply to Ada again before pursuing another code school or boot camp. That maybe despite the fact that Ada seems like a really good program, maybe it just isn’t for me. That maybe I can’t keep sitting here and waiting.

Yesterday, I read yet another blog post from another new Ada student. I think that may have been the straw that broke my patience. Reading these blog posts is literally driving me crazy. Not being in there doing it is driving me crazy. Not knowing what is going to happen to me and my life is driving me crazy. Feeling helpless and broke and unable to make anything happen is going to kill me. It’s ruining my attitude and my perspective and my home life and my marriage. I feel like a lesser person than pretty much anyone I know because of what I do, and what I haven’t done. I NEED THIS.

So I started thinking about it again. I tossed what I thought was my dream of going to Ada out the window and looked at the Code Fellows schedule again. I saw that I could feasibly quit working on July 18th, have a few days off and go to the Unix and Git class on the 25th, and start the CS and Web Dev boot camp on August 3rd, be done with it on the 28th, and start the JavaScript Development Accelerator on October 26th (I wish there was one sooner, I don’t love the idea of having 2 months off, but maybe I’ll figure out something to do, or I just missed a start date on the schedule or something) and be completely done by Christmas.

I thought about it some more and worked out that despite the fact that I don’t have $15k and am not sure where I’m going to get it (if I can’t get a scholarship, and I just read that the financing you can get through CF only pays for half???) overall, in theory, (assuming I could get a job reasonably quickly after finishing the dev accelerator) it will actually cost $40k less to go to CF when you factor in lost wages.

That’s it. Decision made. So I sent my application for CS and Web Dev boot camp this morning. Then I got super stressed out when I read that the diversity scholarship application is due in 3 days. Sent an email about that. Also pretty stressed about what I read about the financing only covering half the tuition – where does the other half come from?? I suppose I can try to get a personal loan through our bank, but when would I have to start paying that back?

It’s all super stressful, but I guess it’s best to just get it out of the way now, and hope that things can only get better.

That sounds stupid to say – my life is great in so many ways. I just went to Sasquatch for the first time Memorial Day weekend and fulfilled a life dream of seeing Robert Plant (Led Zeppelin – he played so many LZ songs it was like seeing them as a whole) play live.
But then this last weekend, I got so upset about my Datsun not being driveable that I kind of lost it. It’s really frustrating to have to ask someone else – even my husband – to do things for me. I can’t pay someone to work on that car. I have no money of my own. He pays for everything. So how can I get mad at him for not working on it? I guess my only excuse is that I’m human and it’s hard to see other people get what they want and just sort of being at someone else’s whim. I wouldn’t have been able to go see RP at Sasquatch if my husband hadn’t wanted to go and do that, you know? While it’s great to get to do things, I often end up feeling like a kid because I’m not really in control of my own destiny due to my complete and utter lack of personal financial security.

And it doesn’t help that I don’t enjoy my job, or that I am not a procrastinator or even a patient person, so this waiting to go to code school is making me lose my mind. Of course, a big part of that is that I can’t pay for it myself – it costs what I make in take home pay in a year. So it’s a scholarship (no guarantee) or a loan (dubious and terrifying) or somehow get my husband to pay for it (and realistically, we don’t have that much money just lying around, so that isn’t even really an option.)

At least I feel like the wheels are in motion because I filled out the application and requested the scholarship app. At least now it is, if only temporarily, out of my hands. Which is ironic, considering what I said above.

There is a lot of irony involved in all of this.
The application for CF is much easier than Ada – it asks why you want to do it, and what experience you have and what your goals are, and then it asks you “What’s the best thing ever?”
Um? Just one thing? Today? Or last week? Or last month? I couldn’t figure out how I wanted to answer the question, so for inspiration, I googled it. And answered my own question. Literally. I had completely forgotten posting that until I saw it again. And you know, it’s true. Even if I accomplish all of this, I’m sure I’ll work on a Saturday again at some point, I wouldn’t be surprised if it happens somewhat frequently, actually. But it won’t be the same as now, when every Saturday I take off of work is coveted, no matter how inconvenient it is in so many ways. So, thanks 4 years ago me, for posting that.

Also, I was reading a series of blog posts by a guy (almost) my age (42 – I’m 43) who has been attending the boot camp. He was talking about introducing himself in class and how they ask what the nerdiest thing about yourself is, and I thought, well, I’ve got my answer – as I sit here running 3 computers (a desktop PC, a Chromebook and a Mac) at once (not to mention the 2 phones, of course.)
And as I read that, and thought about my own answer it just became even more clear how much I belong there. I’m reading about this guy struggling, just as I’ve read about other people’s struggles and their imposter syndromes, thinking “I BELONG THERE”. I know it, as much as I’ve ever known anything in life, and I have this habit of realizing that I know things, even things I shouldn’t. But that’s starting to get a little weird and esoteric, or at least it’s a tangent that deserves its own blog post, anyway.

As a final note, my son graduates high school in a few days, and I am strongly encouraging him to attend CF with me. I wish it would be as easy for me as it is for him (we have money set aside for him to get some sort of education anyway, even if it isn’t 4 year college, and since he can pay up front in full, it will actually cost less for him to attend.)

Fingers crossed.

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