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August 2021: taking a break

·635 words·3 mins·
Gilles Chehade
Gilles Chehade
I’m not a cat.
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  • this is a short article, no TL;DR.

Why so calm ?

As some of you know, I was diagnosed a few years ago with generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder and alexithymia, a trait that makes it particularly difficult for me to cope with the disorders.

As I wrote in 2019, I didn’t take the alexithymia diagnosis too well. It took me a long time to stop ruminating, move forward, and start trying to find a fix for myself with virtually no help. It turns out that I have made huge progress thanks to hypnosis and efforts at trying to decode sensations into emotions, but the road is still long and full of ups and downs.

This brings us to 2021, two years later.

Too many things hinted me that a neurodivergence was at the root of my problems, I could no longer pretend not to see it. I took a psychological assessment which confirmed my intuition, then took the report to a different psychologist for a second opinion and got a confirmation.

I’m neurodivergent.

I don’t want to share the details because it doesn’t really matter how divergent I am, but just like in 2019, I don’t take this news too well and I need some time to accept it.

I’m ok, no worries, nothing a summer alone with my wife and kid can’t fix.

A quick word about sponsorship and this blog

If you are sponsoring me, please take a time to reconsider if you still want to support me.

I have 5 days each month that I can dedicate however I want and, out of these 5 days, 1 is almost fully consumed by the monthly report because I’m a slow writer. I only have 4 days I can use to work on stuff and, because the monthly report can’t be empty, within these 4 days I must find things to do that I can write about.

This doesn’t leave much room for learning new skills and doing useless experiments. I find myself working on interesting stuff (to me), then watching the clock because I want to leave enough time to work on something I can write about. Who wants to read about my experiments converting EEG metrics to midi so I can listen to my brain waves ? Obviously, people prefer when I write code that brings new features in OpenSMTPD.

In June and July, I spent my days unsuccessfully trying to do some VR, and this didn’t leave me time to write the monthly reports. I felt bad for my sponsors as I couldn’t deliver reports, I had 0 things to write.

Since the beginning of August, I’m experimenting with Dart/Flutter to write a mobile app using a Golang backend and a cockroach database. It’s a fun project that I’ll eventually publish and write about but if I want to produce a monthly report, I need to stop right away and dive into code I’m familiar with so I know I can produce something fast enough, rather than continue working on a fun new project that I can’t write about yet.

I find this counter-productive, the monthly reports are preventing me from working on what I want, I think it is time to stop this format which is putting too much pressure on me and limiting future projects.

Instead, I will write reports when I have valuable informations to share, and continue to commit everything to Github. Sometimes you will see a lot of activity on consecutive months, sometimes you will not see anything happening for a quarter.

If you’re not ok with that, I understand and am grateful for your support until this point <3

I sent a notice to all my patrons so they are aware that I will change my way of working.

Love <3

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Feel free to hop in, talk about your own projects, share your thoughts: this is a virtual coworking room for anyone to join.