The One where I Should Stare at Code

In my mentoring session today we talked about my struggles with understanding Design Patterns and Principles and books about (Functional) Programming.

My coworker said I should stop worrying because 90% of the time I ask him about something he goes with his gut and is then annoyed that it takes him a long time to from an answer that has some base in logic or what he has learned and read in his 15 years of programming experience and I can’t have this gut feeling because I have only been coding for a year or so.

He suggested that for every 10 minutes of code I write, I should look at this code for another 30 minutes and come up with some other ways of implementing it and try to evaluate why these options make sense or not.

That’s a cool idea. I am going to try this. But not today. Today was, well, let’s say eventful. Some things had to be released, some code had to be refactored, some ideas had to be revised and then some shit hit some fans. There were some weird bugs that were really difficult to debug and when I went to our stakeholder department to try to get an idea what they had done, I came back with 3 more, kind of urgent problems. No time to write cool, new code and then look at it. Time to isolate the problems, divide the tasks, put on some headphones, look for code that was close to what we needed to do, copy and change it and update the other person that we had pushed our stuff. The good kind of stress that everyone needs every once in a while.

Other stuff from today

  • I again noticed how different everyone’s opinions are and that a lot of it is probably gut feeling. I wrote some very trivial code, my one coworker requested some changes that I implemented, he found some other things that I changed, then I showed it to my other coworker because number one wasn’t there and now I have rewritten everything.
  • We did a “find your inner strength team” exercise in my therapy session today. Mine consists of Samantha Bee and Veronica from Heathers, my 17-year-old pregnant self and a stag. Some things I noticed:
    • Sam Bee and Veronica: Yes, I am an angry feminist. Sorry not sorry. But also: I know that I have to be mindful of remembering that #notallmen are trying to push me down.
    • I think of Harry Potter’s Patronus when asked about an animal that represents strength for me. And I had completely forgotten what my Patronus was. I looked it up on Pottermore when I came home and it’s the brown bear.
    • My 17-year-old pregnant self came from the question “thinking back on your life, when was a time where you felt really strong and good?” and yes, definitely my pregnancy. Not the beginning, that was frightening, but from the second trimester on, hell yes. I mean, I was two-persons strong! So that was my immediate answer to this question without even thinking about it. When I came out of my therapists office I noticed the relation between my age and “Heathers”. “Can’t we be seventeen?” Nope, I couldn’t either. I had to be an adult, being responsible for a tiny human being. And that is something I did really, really well.