2020 Annual Review

“The only thing of any interest is the road that people follow. The tragic part is that once they know where they’re going and who they are- everything else is still a mystery. And that mystery, forever unsolved, is life.”
Pierrot le Fou, Jean-Luc Godard (1965)
  1. What went well this year?
  2. What didn’t go so well this year?
  3. What did I learn?
  1. What went well this year?

Despite a global pandemic, 2020 has fortunately or unfortunately been one of the best years of my life.

  • I ended up getting a promotion and thus my first official developer role.
  • Thrsio became a unicorn and I joined a great team.
  • Nathan and I are getting married and we also bought our first home, a fixer-upper in NYC.

2. What didn’t go so well this year?

My grandfather passed away.

When New York City had refrigerated morgue trucks, my grandfather got sick with encephalitis. His caretakers were too scared to get close to him because they were afraid of Covid19. We didn’t know that it was encephalitis until my grandfather was in the ER and then it was too late.

3. What did I learn?

I. Life goes on.

II. The world is incredibly unfair and unjust.

III. The hedonic treadmill is real.
If you can’t be happy with what you have, more material things won’t make you happier. Like I’m a little bit happier but I could have survived still flourished with what I already have.

I don’t feel like I got much done this year.

I ended up doing a few coding projects that could be considered game-changers, either in the Amazon world or for the nonprofit I’m volunteering for. But I feel like my life has been on pause since March. I feel like I’ve been coasting, not reaching my full potential. I haven’t been going 999 miles per minute like I usually do.

Except when you look at the things that have happened this year, the things that I may have “accomplished”… I’ve “accomplished” things that none of my peers have, and something just feels wrong.

Even if Biden becomes POTUS, I am anxious that things won’t change.

I’m anxious that I’m having the best year of my life when billions of people might be having their worst. It’s not okay and I don’t really know what to do about it.

I have finally learned how to “coast” or “relax”. I can now enjoy watching Netflix without feeling guilty that I’m not doing something more productive. I have gained enough self-compassion to pat myself on the back.

I stopped doing a lot of the things that drenched my hands in metaphorical blood and the suffering of the underprivileged but it wasn’t enough.

I feel like I’m standing at a fork in the road and I am afraid to choose.

Do I coast and forget about everything in the world? Like I’ve been lucky enough to do this year, living in my tiny bubble of privilege?

Or do I get out there, get uncomfortable, and get my hands dirty?

Will I ever be able to feel at ease with the privilege that I have? Because it just feels so inherently unjust to me and I don’t know what to do about it.

Is the injustice of the world and potential collapse of everything I know, love, and enjoy, the source of my anxiety or am I anxious about something else?

I guess I have a general idea of what I need to do (kick ass) and I am afraid that I am not being honest with myself- in that I am not doing it.

What are you doing Youn?

How are you going to change the world and what are you willing to sacrifice for it?

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