At Techorama, I saw a keynote from Derek Martin of Microsoft. The talk was called Pain, Grief, Perseverance, and Technology, and it’s worth seeing if you can find it live or recorded. David talks about his growth in life from a young man to a Principal Program Manager at Microsoft, husband, and father of six or seven. All the while dealing with a mental illness and learning to ask for help and to manage his busy life.
It’s a great talk, though one I only lightly relate to. My life has been mostly easy and wonderful. Not always, but mostly. My problems are often minor ones. As I write this, I had surgery this morning to repair a painful ankle I’ve been dealing with for a few years. Things went smoothly and I expect rehab to be the same.
My challenge with this issue? Scheduling it when I had a hole in my schedule to get cut and then a follow up. As it is, I arrived home from Brussels yesterday with a little stress about the COVID test and airline delays in getting back. I now fly to Germany in 3 days and then come back next week to see the doctor. I know, life is hard for me. My wife “gets” to come along and help carry my bags on a trip to Europe.
Did I mention my life is amazing?
I’ve had a lot of success in my career. I’m not an expert on tuning like Grant or Erik. I don’t know all the ins and outs of Power BI like Patrick or the deep Azure tricks that Denny and Joey constantly amaze me with. I don’t make the great presentations that Brent does or the business success of Stacia or the impressive credentials of Dr. Holt. I’ve learned from all these people and more. They’ve been there to give me help, whether with a technical problem or guidance in some area of life.
I work hard. I’ve worked many weeks in my career and at my career beyond the standard 40, or even the common tech 50. I grind away at times, but I’ve also learned to say no and find balance. My wife and Andy remind me that babies aren’t dying because I take time off and that I need to take time off. Tjay provides the inspiration to do that more. I’ve learned to do that more as I age, balancing a busy work schedule with my coaching hobby. I’ve been lucky enough to work with some wonderful young ladies the last six years and travel with them to various cities to watch them compete, laugh, cheer, cry, and work as hard as I’ve ever worked at my career. In a sense, I have two amazing careers.
My kids are healthy and happy. I’m proud of their journeys through life as two of them work on careers and one grinds through university. They are strong and dependable. They find a better balance between work and life, but don’t shy away from work and are accountable and responsible. This week, they’re taking over the cooking for me and horse chores for my wife as we travel in Europe.
Again, life is wonderful here.
My Mom praises my work ethic in getting through college and finding jobs that grew my career because of my hard work, and the effort I made to build SQL Server Central with Andy and Brian and then sell it to Redgate. All true, but that’s not the whole story. I had luck in people giving me opportunities, supporting me, even helping with the workload at times. I had lots of opportunities, and I took advantage of them. I also had plenty of help.
I helped build something that Redgate and many of you have appreciated and used over the years. SQL Server Central, SQL Saturday, the Networking Dinner at the Pass Summit, and a few other things. However, you all helped me with those things. Many of you took a chance on posting a question or coming to the event. Plenty others of you participated with answers, articles, presentations, volunteer efforts, and more. You have helped me in my journey and I appreciate your efforts alongside my own.
We’ve been a team, and I thank you for being there alongside me.
I’m on an amazing journey in life, and I’m trying to enjoy more of it even as I keep busy at living it. My “problems” are first world ones, minor bumps on one a road I could never have imagined traveling when I was younger. I work hard, but I know many of you are there to help me often. Sometimes you help me when I don’t ask or think I need assistance.
You can find an amazing life for you. Work at life, work at your attitude, work at your balance, work at your skills, and work at asking for help. I, and many others, are also here to help you. We don’t achieve anything on our own, but we do work to find success. Remember there is always someone else willing to provide an assist when you need it. Sometimes we don’t even realize how others help us, but they do.
My life is perfect, thanks to us.