All Aboard the Middle-Aged Pain Train!

A new project where I discuss life as a budding middle-aged polyglot wannabe.

I turn 45 at the beginning December, and most recently, I find myself standing at the center of a number of different crossroads in my life, both personally and professionally. Despite being fairly social for a developer, over the last several months I found myself slipping back into my dark cave of despair, and before long I ended up in the throes of a depression the likes of which I have not seen in a long, long time, and am only now starting to crawl back out of.

I debated long and hard about whether or not I should share any of this, as I will probably come off sounding like a whiny middle aged dude in the middle of his mid-life crisis, but we software developers are often so very introverted, and don’t share the things we think and feel with our peers and others around us. Many of you will probably not relate to any of this, but it is my hope that I am not alone, and that maybe someone else in the same position as I that are too shy or uncomfortable to talk openly about what they are going through will find something here to help them.

I have a lot of things I want to cover here, and I hope the width of the material I am covering doesn’t limit the depth of what I am writing about. In no particular order:

  1. To discuss my battle with anxiety and depression, how I got here, and what I am doing to treat it and cope with it.

  2. To discuss my journey to becoming a polyglot, when I have made it a point most of my career to be fairly singularly focused on one language and toolset.

  3. To discuss the battle between becoming a manager and keeping my feet grounded in development work.

I founded and was part of a software development company for 18 of the first 20 years of my career. More and more since then, I have found myself feeling adrift and unaccomplished. That’s not because I miss or want to go back to what I had; on the contrary, it has much to do with not knowing what I truly want to do, or where I want to be next. I plan to dive into this at length on this blog.

I am a longtime Perl developer, and a member of the Dancer Core Team. While I love both, and they have made a great living for me and my family, I feel more and more that it has come at the expense of growing myself professionally. Some of my writing here will discuss my adventures in learning new languages, frameworks, and technologies in an effort to keep myself relevant and well rounded.

Last but not least, I will discuss the endless turmoil of wanting to move up in the ranks at $company by becoming part of management, but wanting to stay firmly involved in development too. It’s something I have struggled with considerably in my career, and I know that I am not alone in this. Hopefully my struggles here will be able to help others wondering if it is the right move for their career.

Thank you for following along up to this point. I hope you will continue to follow along with me as I boldly stride into the second half of my life.

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