This post is… I don’t know where it’s going to go, but I feel like I need to write my way through it. Let’s see what happens. But before that, I need to cover some history:
- 1995 – 2008: I worked at AOL, was very involved in church and had small children. I had two major leg injuries: a ruptured ACL and a dislocated ankle that required major surgery.
- 2008 – 2021: Moved to Savannah. I worked at a series of small startups and a lifestyle company, quit my church, had growing children, and got very involved in the community, serving on at least one governing board pretty much the whole time from The Creative Coast to Susie King Taylor Community School. Also co-founded a non-profit, TechSAV. Oh yeah, I gained close to 100 pounds between 2008 and 2019.
- 2021 – now: Started working at Gusto, by that point, had already quit all the governing boards, and COVID stopped us from doing all TechSAV events.
It’s now 2023 and I’m still working at Gusto, and loving it. I love having work/life balance finally, and not having to wear all the hats of being a startup CTO.
I’ve been thinking about looking for a board to join, and what to do with all my newfound time, but… for reasons I couldn’t put my finger on, I was dragging my feet. I just don’t want to.
Why? What changed?
I realized that since we moved to Savannah, I’ve been under a huge amount of stress – both externally and internally applied. This is the first time since probably 2000 that I haven’t been a Single Point of Failure for something at work. Balance wasn’t something I could physically do, much less something I had in my life.
Now that I’m finally feeling some relief from the stress, I’ve lost 50 pounds in the last two years, and I’m not done.
I don’t want to join any boards. I don’t want to lead some great new thing.
I want to get healthy.
I finally have some time that’s mine. I’m not on call for the first time in twenty years. People rely on me, but I’m not a Single Point of Failure for anyone’s livelihood (except my own).
It feels selfish to want to spend time on me, but I need to. I don’t want to commit to something else until I feel like I can do it without sacrificing my health, which I still need to improve.
Clarity. It took me a while to get here, but now that I’m here, I’m at peace with it. I’m investing in the opportunity to be here, to be present, to make sure that I can be here and be active for a long time.