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Swimming with the Sharks: A Recap of My Second Year at DigitalOcean

This year was definitely a year of extremes. From the highest of highs to the lowest of lows, this year will not be forgotten anytime soon. You know the drill, grab a hot beverage, a blanket, and gather round as I recap the year that was 2021.

So, as always, with my blog posts that have a deadline, it's late. To be fair, I've been stuck on a blog post for about 6 months, and at this point, I don't know if it'll ever get published. I hope it does, but it's controversial, to say the least. In all that commotion, I forgot to do a yearly recap. So here we go.

Year 2 at DigitalOcean

This year I wrapped up my second full year at DigitalOcean as a Sr. Developer Advocate, having leveled up to a Senior role in June! I'm incredibly grateful to my peers at DigitalOcean for making it a stellar year, despite the difficulties we faced.

If I had to describe 2021 as one word, I would describe it as "extreme." I mean this in a sense, that things were either really good or really bad. For the bad, this year, I faced the heartbreak of losing not one but two very close coworkers to illness. This was a first for me. Both of these individuals were legends in their roles, and the shock of losing them derailed the organization for a bit. How could it not? To Hollie and Peeyush, you're missed more than you know....
Despite this, we continued on and still managed to pull off amazing feats this year.

  • DigitalOcean went public!
  • I got to help hire two new members to my team!
    • Welcome, Phoebe and Kim!
  • I was promoted!
  • We finally created a web show called Cloud Chats which I got to help design and host.
  • Created an education program for Marketing around DO products
    • I taught my CMO and the Marketing team how to deploy to Kuberenetes1.
  • Made lead of DigitalOcean Navigators program.
  • Continued to help educate and empower the Community

These are just some of the events that made 2021 the year that it was. I'm proud of my team, my extended teams, the Marketing organization, and DigitalOcean as a whole for making it through this challenging year.

2021 Stats

So what all did I do this year? Here are the stats for my accomplishments of 2021:

What Does 2022 Hold?

Barring some disaster, 2022 will find me continuing to grow as a developer and Developer Advocate at DigitalOcean. I'm still enjoying waking up and going to work every morning. As long as that is the case, I'll stay where I am. When the day comes that I start to dread going to work every day, that's when I'll depart. But I do not anticipate that happening anytime soon.

Next year I have a lot of projects I want to expand upon. Some of which are work-related that I can't necessarily speak about publicly at the moment, so instead, here are some of my personal goals for 2022. I'm putting these out into the world to hold myself accountable:

  • No sodas
    • I did this in 2020 and was super proud of myself. 2021 saw a backslide given the state of everything, so 2022 is a course correction for this.
  • Lose 50 lbs
    • I have long struggled with my weight, which is a super sensitive subject for me. 2022 is the year I take control of my health again
  • Write & publish a book
    • I have been kicking this can down the road long enough. It's time I finished my proposal and get a book published.
  • Spend at least 10 hours a week writing code
    • Believe it or not, Developer Advocates can go months without writing a single line of code2. I want to get back into the habit of writing code regularly
  • Become a Full Stack Developer
    • It's time. I've been avoiding Front End work my entire career, and it's time that I sit down and learn how to do it. At least to the proficiency level that I can build my own front end to applications I'm building.

Thank you to everyone who has supported me and my work. I look forward to all of the challenges that 2022 has to bring. Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year!

  1. The title of my autobiography will be called "Kubernetes for Marketers." 

  2. I don't include my "Hello World" type coding here. Sure I write sample apps and such, but these are so low level that, at least to me, it's not sufficient to keep up my skills. I want to write and build actual production.