Photo by David Kovalenko on Unsplash

So I didn’t pass the code challenge yesterday. Maaaan, what a blow to the ego! We’re working with Ruby on Rails, and I really thought I had all the concepts down. Funny thing is, I did have them down. I just couldn’t relieve myself of the pressure that comes with these tests.

Anxiety. It got the best of me, and I realize that I wrote an entire post on this, and couldn’t even follow my own advice. I won’t make that mistake again. I really beat myself up after the test, as I knew I had no passed. I’m so grateful for my cohort mates who stepped in to help me realize where things had gone wrong… (thank you, K).

After having my meeting with the coach, I felt a great sense of relief. We were able to talk through the code, and I was able to jump in and tell him where I had fallen short. Where are my strong params? Why didn’t I iterate into another class? Why didn’t I implement flash[:errors]?

Because anxiety. I became fixated on redirects, and couldn’t move on to the rest of the test. I believe that had I been able to move forward that I would have passed. So, if nothing else, I learned that my own mental state was the cause of my “failure.”

But was it a failure? I suppose that’s dependent on how you define the word. For me, a failure is when you don’t learn anything from your mistakes. We’re human, we’ve all made mistakes, but we’re not defined by them. We’re fallible, and imperfect, and that’s something to be embraced. Because I was able to learn where my shortcomings were this time around (mostly emotional) I know now I need to do a better job to combat those issues in the future.

I got bogged down by stakes. There are high stakes with these code challenges, because if you don’t pass first, then again, you will take the mod over again. You’ll be put with an entirely new group of people, where you’ll have to re-establish relationships and basically start all over. Not to mention the fact that there is a 3 week gap in between mods.

I recently moved up to just outside Madison to live with my family to get through school. While I feel a tremendous amount of relief to be up here, its very isolating and I feel lonely a lot of the time. Without the structure provided by Flatiron, I don’t know what sort of shape I would be in mentally and emotionally. So the stakes, at least for me, are a lot higher than what is presented at the outset. It got to me. I won’t let it happen again.

At this point, my cohort are compromised of my best friends. I’ve shared many drinks with them, and confided many a dark secret. Some of them have been there for me at my very, very lowest (thanks B). They are the biggest outlet for a social life that I have, and I’m not going to give that up. In order to do that, I need to be better prepared for these code challenges, and need to take my own damned advice.

The world of coding is a litany of pitfalls that can associated to what some consider to be “failure”, which can also lead down the rabbit hole of imposter syndrome. I am not these things, neither failure nor imposter.

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

I will continue to learn,

I will continue to teach,

I will continue to listen,

I will continue to preach.

I’m here for you,

you’re here for me,

and eventually we’ll all finally see

what the truth behind the matter is,

and it might not be that time,

but it feels like it never is.

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