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So, this post is technically two days premature, but, since I'll be at work on monday, well, for all intents and purposes....

I'm thirty!

I honestly keep having to triple-check what year it is, because I'd swear I'm only late-twenty-something, but..... nope, the big three-oh. Three decades safely out of the way.

For the most part, I don't think I'm as upset as most people stereotypically are about this milestone -- for most of my life, I've only wanted to be older, and it's still largely true...! Every year of my life I've come more and more into my own, and while I'm starting to be happy with where I am, there's definitely still a ways to go.... My body is starting to not be as resilient as it once was (I never would have described it as such in the past, but it's even less so now!), but it's still at the point where I can feel good if I take care of it (be conscientious with food, eating, stress...) I definitely need to find time to do more exercising, but, well, that ties into my next point.

The only part of this milestone that I'm not happy about is where I stand on a sense of accomplishment! I thought I would be further on the road to proving myself and having some kind of freedom to pursue interesting projects by now.... but work has sucked up more and more of my time, and more importantly, energy. My projects are actually better than ever -- as I get better at managing my anxiety, I'm actually becoming a better and better programmer and problem solver, I can feel myself comfortably grasping problems that used to panic me... and I'm actually better than ever at plugging away at things without panicking and jumping ship for something impossibly ambitious, as I used to do... :P But regardless, even simple projects just take such an absurd amount of time, when I'm squeezing them into weekends, while also trying to relax from the week, and catch up on chores, and (at least intending to) do something outside the home now and then... And the job that I'm giving up this time for is becoming consistently less and less satisfying -- I've gone to a position of being made to constantly play catch-up on fixing a half-dozen outsourced projects, and even when I DO occasionally have a project I directly control, I have so little time left for it that I'm made to rush it out half-finished just to be able to get home not too late...

Honestly, I can't complain too much -- the pay is pretty good, it's still a reasonably good opportunity to learn skills on the job (though less and less with every passing month)... the overtime isn't as bad as it used to be, and they're pretty accommodating of my quirks. In today's economy, it's a hard deal to say no to.

But honestly, I'm a good programmer -- a creative programmer -- I know I could be making money other ways..... I'm still young, single, I've got like no expenses, and a year's salary sitting in my bank account (ON TOP of what I've paid into my retirement, and paid off on my home). Other than potentially getting my home completely paid off in a few more years, I'm never going to be in a better position to take chances business-wise.... I've got a reasonably-solid bread-and-butter plan (sell games to advertisers, which there's always a market for), and a huge glut of secondary plans that I'm dying to discover the feasibility of (or at least say that I've done, even if there's no money in it)....

Gah, I'm sorry, this turned into a big rant about my job :) But, it's kind of the lynchpin of everything, from what I can see! All of the ways that I want to improve my life (more exercise, more time with friends, more creative expression) require more free time -- or at least more-FLEXIBLE free time! Part of me is worried that I'm just looking for excuses not to improve my life until some future goal is taken care of -- something I know I've been guilty of in the past -- but the only reliable free time I have lately is on weekends, and there's just too much to squeeze it all in... If I had a work-from-home schedule that I could determine myself, I could get up, do some work, go out for a walk/jog, do some work, get some chores done, and relax in the evenings... (This all comes down to how many hours of work a week it would take to make a living, of course...)

Anyway! The more I read from people on twitter and tumblr, the more I realise that life is too short and too valuable to settle without even taking a stab at making a name for yourself.... I don't want to be famous, just to have the freedom to be creative, get some ideas out.... and this job is getting less and less worth holding onto. (Besides the fact that it's my FIRST JOB -- even if I were to come back to office work, I don't even know what the rest of the market would be like...! I mean, I've heard horror stories about programming jobs, but... this is a reasonably good city for this kind of work, there must be other places that wouldn't torment their workers...)

Anyway, yeah! I guess this really is mostly about work :) My body's got some wear and tear but it's manageable.... my anxiety still causes me stress, but it's leagues better than it's ever been.... my identity is starting to take shape, though I'm still shy about showing it.... with a streak of gray in my hair and some fashionable glasses, I'm prettier than I've ever been.<3 The only thing bothering me is, I've probably got all kinds of opportunities to make my life more my own (instead of it having to mostly be my employers'), and I just need the time, and the nerve, to go through with it! I've only got a limited number of decades to turn these spinny thoughts into something concrete that people can play with, and anything left at the end just vanishes, never being seen... so there's no good reason that should keep me from spending my time doing that!

I'm sorry, I'm repeating myself. :) It's just been... so frustrating, and so scary. I want to move forward with this, but am paralysed by time, and the fear of telling my boss that I want to leave..... the sane money is on testing the water BEFORE quitting... so I'm holding my tongue, even though I would SO like to just get away from that chaotic mess of bureaucratic shortsightedness. So the whole thing has me a little pent-up.... I have so many daydreams that end in telling them I'm leaving. Ah well. Maybe if I were working on a game instead of writing this post... ;)

Anyway! I'm a thirty-something! Whoa. :) I've got more possibilities in front of me now than I ever thought I'd have -- but yet less to my name than I expected.... hopefully this will be the decade where that changes? ;)

Thank you everyone for putting up with me all these years -- hopefully there will be some return on your investment soon. ;)

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Work-related stuff aside, welcome to the club, man.

Thanks! So there IS life after 20s after all! ;)

Given what's happened since August, I've known that for quite a while now! :D

Man, I've been thirty for like three weeks now. You have a lot of catching up to do, you whippersnapper.

Unfortunately, I don't have a lot of advice on what to do about the job thing, since my own approach is basically to multitask. I take my laptop to work just so I can work on my novel on the bus ride there and back, and also during my lunch break. I like the sense that I'm working toward something (and progress is definitely being made!) and I also like the comfort of not having to quit my job or something until after it's out and it becomes the biggest bestseller ever with like five movies and everything (which obviously has a 100% chance of happening.)

Pff! Who needs advice from an old man like you!

Yeah, multitasking suited me well for a while... but my job is too exhausting for me to multitask much any more unfortunately.

Happy (early) birthday - welcome to a new decade of your life!

It is difficult to balance work with... well, the things you actually want to do in life; I'm forever cramming stuff into odd hours, and feeling like I've got far more projects on the go than progress being made on any of them. I suppose it's up to everyone to find the balance that's right for them; I know I'd essentially want to spend all the time on stuff that was important to me rather than stuff that was important to other people (and I turn 31 in a couple of months!) but I guess it'll get easier to balance it out with time (if nothing else, because one day I'll hit retirement age :P).

Hope you have a great day, in any case, however you choose to spend it. :)


Yeah.... I'm hoping that working from home will leave me working less hours on for-money projects.... but even if it doesn't, hopefully my for-money projects will at least give me more freedom of creativity within them!

Oh! Well done :) Your own confidence gives me some, as well - it's a milestone and life does change, but we can adapt.

As for the job, that is a difficult decision, as the cost of freedom is having to use some of that to take a lot of responsibility for your own livelihood. However, you're right that you're in a good position to do it, and that you would have enough time deciding whether it was working out or not to get yourself back into work before it became an emergency (now that I'm saying this, I think I'd love to just take a sabbatical for a year and work on my own things with every intention of going back after the year was up...!) And as for what that new position might be... it really sounds like it couldn't be any more of a stress-inducing always-on-call situation than you have currently stifling your time.

Good luck with everything :)

Yeah, seriously.... I was talking with my dad about this, I'm realising how many good jobs there are in Montreal for this kind of thing.... it would honestly be smart of me to quit and find a new desk job, so it can't be WORSE to (at worst) spend some time working from home in between! (Burn through some savings, but learn about the self-employment racket first-hand instead of always wondering if I could have done it!)

Self-employment can be pretty hard, but i guess it largely depends on what you can do.

Congrats on your 30 score. . . .

. . . .am I the youngest person in this group??? @_@

As a member of the ripe old age of 28, am I seriously the youngest member of Team Hatoful?!

I'm still only 28 as well! Though throughout my life for some reason my friends have always been people who are slightly older than me. I never really noticed the gap...

My friends have always been slightly younger than me! I thought you were one of the few who was slightly older! Man, it really is just a number :)

Hah... yes, I forgot to mention that part of my not noticing the gap is that everyone seems to assume that I'm several years older than I actually am!

I'd thought so too, actually! I think it's the shaved head, it imparts a little extra maturity.

Heh, that's a pleasant way to see it - thanks :) I do that to disguise the way that I'm going grey thanks to my mother, and bald anyway thanks to my grandfather!

and think of all the impressions you could do! :D

Yes, mostly of boiled eggs.

You're younger by a little more than month! I guess you win this battle.

I'm used to everyone being younger than me, usually by about 4-5 years. I was starting to think I was getting too old for the fandom, actually, because everyone I've met at conventions for the past few years . Imagine my surprise when a majority of Team Hatoful's hit their Second 20s!

When I first went to one of the Bostonfurs meetups a couple of years ago, I realized that there were definitely two groups - there were the young ones, and then there was a more mature group of about 30-40, who I realized I was beginning to identify more with! Even though we're not part of the youngest group any more, I've grown to like being around people who are more... experienced and mostly sensible :) The agelessness of the Internet and by extension the fandom is a real blessing.

Oops, turns out I *am* the youngest, I got basic chronology mixed up. How embarrassing. Still, it's only about a month. :D

Ah, yes! I never actively searched out the younger members, that's just what my circle has been recently. I do wonder what time with the older class of furries is like, but I'm not sure I'll fit in because I still feel as if we lack common ground since I'm still in that phase where I'm trying to figure out what to do with my life, and i figure most people in that age group have known for a long time. I'm sure it's all perception and as soon as I actually meet some 30-40somethings it will all change :P

Aaaand here's where I feel old. XD

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Still early ;) But thanks! :) I hope so.

Holy sheet, man! I totally missed this! For some reason I thought it was later in the month. Happy Belated!

And in work-related news, I find that there are a lot of people who just push-off without a future. (Like me XD) But, it does light a fire under their ass to get to working for themselves ;)

Man, do I wish I had the nerve.... it's really hard to say no to this money, though, especially when I'm so close to paying off my home.... and honestly, I just might wind up completely freaking out about my paycheque XD

And thanks :D

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