courtesy of giphy
Ending 2018 with a Home, Ergonomics, and Hope
At the end of 2017, I lost the ability to type. It's been a year since I could type more than three sentences on my computer or phone without feeling pain, irritation, or numbness in my wrists and hands.* As a product manager, recovering software developer, new investor and quite frankly, millennial (right on the cusp of Gen-Z—bless!), losing the ability to type was extremely inconvenient at best. In previous years, I’d go weeks on end where my days entirely revolved around typing in front of a screen. Typing is how I got my degree. It's how I've done every job. It's how I make money. It's how I communicate with everyone I know. And then at the end of last year… I lost the ability to type.
All things considered, dealing with my carpal tunnel issues (though given the length and severity of my symptoms, the doctors aren't entirely sure what's going on) isn't the worst thing to happen this year. A lot of terrible things happened all over the country and world in 2018, and I internalized a lot of it. I spent much of this year incredibly anxious. I, like Fred Wilson, now carry medication on me in case of an onset panic attack. Thanks to therapy and support from friends and family, I haven't had one since obtaining the medication. I hope I never have to use it.
On the flipside, some extremely lit things also happened in 2018! This year, I created a home.** I work too much and my travel schedule is ~literally~ all over the place, so creating a space by myself, for myself was really exciting. Speaking of work, I spent a year in learning in my (not-so) new role at GV, and I'm excited to put those learnings to work in 2019. My 2018 travels took me to Switzerland; it was my favorite place to visit this year, although I got to go some other cool places, too. I joined the nonprofit board of Brave, which has a mission and focus that I am really excited about. Also on the nonprofit front, I got to emcee the inaugural All Raise Summit, the first of its kind, where 400 women in venture capital came together in our effort to reshape the VC and entrepreneurial industry.
Balancing all of the moving parts of this year on weakened hands was no small feat. Despite my Instagram, which at this point is so polished it's essentially teetering on the line of total fabrication (can you relate?), a lot of it was really not pretty... but some of it truly was. There’re a healthy handful of things that I absolutely fell in love with in 2018, including: Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi (I’m reading it again, which I never do). Call Me By Your Name (I bought it on Amazon, which I also never do). The Bold Type on Freeform (easily my hardest binge… I know I'm corny). Careful by Mariah Carey (respect her!) and “Nice For What” by... our boy. The list also includes: tea leaf salad, foam rolling, and this video of me and my friends in Greece.
I am so happy to be at the end of 2018. The good was good: the casual intimacy of transitioning from texting to phone calls, the coziness of my apartment, dining on Swiss chocolate. The bad was… well, you know. I'm left feeling so hopeful for 2019. More optimistic for a new year than I have been in a while! Because what do we have, typeless and all, if not hope?
P.S. It's been so long since my last update! I'll try my best to not wait two years until the next.
*To survive, I dictate everything. Documents, iMessages, social media updates, this is very post, you name it. I have become an expert robot-talker. For post-dictation edits, I use a number of ergonomic devices, including three different mice and a vertical keyboard. I always carry my ergonomic equipment with me, which means I have the heaviest backpack, which also means I'm probably destined for some other impending physical injury! I will report back on whether or not this was all worth it in 40 years.
**While writing this, I realized there is a mouse in my apartment and now I don't even know what to think about anything anymore!!!
to go back home.