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Mom, I went to Google

Mom, I went to Google

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I went to Google! Twice! 

On Monday and Saturday of last week, I put on my big girl pants and decided to go hang out in the big kids' playpen and learn something new. 

And I am so glad that I did!!

I made a pact with myself this year, that I would get back into coding. So, I jam packed my calendar with as many coding meetups as possible.

For dumb reasons, I'd told myself I wasn't "that" good (whatever that means) and disqualified myself from opportunities, but this year was to be the redemption and resurrection. 

I whispered to myself:

"Just show up. Nothing happens if you're not there". 

So I did! 

I went to many meetups.

I learned a lot and regained lots of confidence.

And then....Google. 

Google GDG NY had a 2 Part meetup on Polymer, a new Web Components library. I'd peeped Polymer in the Google Keynote 2014 (the first time I watched a Google Keynote) and was interested. So, I pulled up my pants and registered. 

I did not know what I was getting myself into. I didn't know what I would be working on. But, I got curious and leaped. 

Just show up. Nothing happens if you’re not there

Great thinking! 

Days leading up to the events, I did some homework. 

What is Polymer?

What's it built on?

What do I need to know?

Then I went and prepped like it was an exam - crammed like there was no tomorrow:

Team treehouse, JavaScript the right way, Google YouTube videos

....what the bleep is data-binding??

...EVERYTHING. 

The days of the events came and I felt nervous out of place and like I still didn't know enough to be there. But "Just show up. Nothing happens if you're not there". 

Big girl pants on, I went.

Monday's event

Like I said, I was nervous. So I get to the location super early. Like an hour early. 

(Creepy much?). 

So what do I do?

Walk into the Apple Store, conveniently across the street. I thought I'd spend some time and maybe see the new products. But after 2 minutes I was out again. I was too antsy and the store was too crowded. (iPhone 6 launch and all)

So I stake out the Google joint. The wrong Google joint....Did you know that Google has a minimum of 3 offices in the Chelsea area?!?! Yo!! 

Anyways, that's what an hour buffer is for, right?

Triple check the location and then sit with anxiety in Chelsea Market.

Try to read.

No... code.

No.. people watch.

...Dude, the anxiety of it all! 

....45 mins before the event, I just say "hey, who cares I'll be an early bird and I take the elevator up.".....

Google is COOL!!

So cool! 

The Chelsea Market office felt like a tech startup area. And the lobby had all kinds of toys in it and nice seats. 

I sat next to 4 other early birds (2 college students and 2 seasoned programmers). We said hi and chatted. The anxiety subsided a bit as I gave the students advice and realized I wasn't alone. 

That event was awesome. More on Polymer in another post.

Saturday's event

Not so early to this one. That dreaded NYC subway system on a rainy weekend day is not my idea of fun. But the trek was worth it. 

Nitya Narasimhan (@nitya), one of the event organizers and presenters was particularly  amazing! I loved watching her work. Her code lab was informative and entertaining! Demoing, in an engaging and sticky way, I'm learning more often, is a skill. (One that I'm trying to hone). 

After the talks, I got to code with a diverse group of programmers. It was a great experience and we developed a good rapport. 

Show up, something good will happen if you’re there

The Googlers were awesome. Answering every question and teaching ways of solving problems that I had overlooked. Ways that I would not have stumbled upon if I hadn't shown up. 

I had an amazing time! I learnt a lot!!

I think I'll change my little mantra now. It should reflect the growing confidence all these meet ups are reviving. 

I'm thinking, something along the lines of "Show up, something good will happen if you're there" ;)

Embrace the discomfort

Embrace the discomfort

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