Honestly, three months ago I wasn’t in a very good place. That’s because three and a half months ago I was in an awesome place and it all came crashing down at once like a house of cards (pst… can’t wait for season 3!). I had a dream job lined up with a new start-up company and they were going to move me out to California and we were all going to get rich doing what we loved. Best part about it was my girlfriend Dani was going with me and join the adventure – essentially we were about to pioneer a brand new west coast life. Sounds like the east coast technologist dream right? Well, that company lost a principal investor going into an off season and POOF! laid off with no back up plan. Now I’m 26 years old and desperately seeking to reinvent myself and not just settle for some job that I’ll end up loathing in 6 months, I want to actively seek a career, one that is challenging and rewarding, and one where I can bring my ideas to life. I didn’t know what that looked like at the time, so I sought out the one woman who knew me best, Mom.
Yes, I’m a momma’s boy, and yes I’m her only son, but truthfully she one of the brightest most caring people on the planet. She teaches 5th graders at a local elementary school and commonly refers to her teaching philosophy as planting seeds in young people’s minds so they may grow to be excellent members of society – talk about knowing one’s purpose in life! She also has a thing for Dr. Seuss if you couldn’t tell.
So I’m having a heart to heart with mama bear in early December, and she sees me in this down state of “oh woe is me, what am I to do with my life, blah blah blah, wussy stuff that no grown man would share with anyone EXCEPT mom. She smiles and says with a quiet, matter-of-fact, confidence, “Spencer, you’re so creative and good with technology, why don’t you just learn how to make phone apps?” All of a sudden I could see my entire future – it was like that breakthrough moment in Good Will Hunting when Robin Williams says “Will, it’s not your fault. No, it’s not your fault, seriously DUDE it’s not your fault.” (Ok, maybe that wasn’t the exact quote but you get the gist)… BREAKTHROUGH!
I begin scouring the web for learn-to-code tutorials and begin sharpening my pencil with a site called Codecademy. The next day I’m talking with a college friend who works at the Atlanta Tech Village and I check out their website and Alakazam! The Iron Yard introduces itself to me and I’m checking it out like a previously home-schooled college freshman checks out the new liberal arts female undergrad students – needless to say I fell hard and now find myself in the Front End Engineering cohort learning to build websites and applications for the web. And I owe it all to Mom – she did it again!