6 Jun 2023 • 5 min read

Life - From Coding to Caregiving: Strength in Unexpected Challenges

Life often takes us on unexpected journeys, and it is during these moments that we truly discover our capacity for resilience and adaptability. I would like to share a personal story that has shaped my perspective and transformed my life; Not as a plea for sympathy, but rather a testament to the power of the human spirit and the valuable lessons we learn about ourselves along the way. This is the story of a harrowing illness that tested me physically and emotionally, yet ultimately enlightened me about the strength I never knew I possessed, along with the profound beauty of humanity’s interconnectedness and mutual support.

It was a typical October morning last year when my girlfriend and I embarked on a cruise ship for what was meant to be a relaxing trip up to the coast of Alaska. Little did we know that fate had a different plan in store for us. In a split second, our lives were forever altered when my girlfriend suffered a devastating injury, to her neck & spinal cord. The excruciating pain that followed and her sudden inability to walk has diverted our dreams of exploring the world, to leaving us landlocked and faced with the arduous task of building a alternite life for now from scratch. However, in the face of adversity, we discovered our unwavering determination to forge ahead, finding solace in the belief that her mobility will one day be restored.

This unforeseen turn of events brought about a drastic role change for me, transforming me from a Lead Software Engineer into a full-time caregiver. I had to step away from my full-time role to devote my heart, energy and attention to my partner’s healing process. Adjusting to this new reality was undeniably challenging. Instead of wrangling lines of code and projects, my days were now dedicated to navigating the labyrinth of hospitals, specialist appointments, physical therapy, and perfecting the art of creating the right milk-to-espresso ratio in homemade lattes (it’s more important to master than you may think lol).

Nevertheless, amidst the difficulties, I am grateful for the opportunity to demonstrate unwavering love and support to the person who means the world to me. Through this experience, I am learning the invaluable virtues of patience, presence, and the immeasurable power of being a source of comfort, strength, and love for a loved one. Perhaps most significantly, I am discovering the true importance of self-care and self-compassion, recognizing that to be the best caregiver, I must first take care of myself.

This unexpected journey has been a profound learning experience for me, an opportunity to grow both as an individual and as a caregiver. I remain hopeful that, with the right interventions and support, she will make a full recovery, though it will not be a short journey. To accommodate these changes in our lives, I have made significant adjustments to my professional trajectory, transitioning from a full-time job to contract work, providing me with the flexibility necessary to be there for my her while still engaging in the technical work I hold dear.

Technology and Caregiving

Throughout this tumultuous period, technology has emerged as a critical ally in our journey. Two remarkable tools, in particular, have played pivotal roles in supporting us: the Hero Automatic Pill Dispenser and the previously mentioned Xreal Air VR Glasses.

One indispensable piece of technology that has been instrumental in routine is the Hero Automatic Pill Dispenser. This intelligent device serves as a guardian of medication management, storing, sorting, and dispensing medications according to the prescribed schedule you enter. With its intuitive reminders using lights, and gentle chimes, the Hero Automatic Pill Dispenser ensures you don’t miss a dose. Using the app, you can access real-time information about the medication compliance, providing invaluable reminders and insights. Use this referral link to learn more and get 3 months free membership: REFFU9BS6JUF

Xreal Air VR Glasses have been a godsend, helping me work remotely with unparalleled ease, regardless of whether I’m in a sterile hospital waiting room or our new land home. In spite of the most challenging circumstances, the Xreal Air VR Glasses gave me the power to stay focused, productive, and industrious throughout. By providing me with a floating monitor anywhere I go that can fit in my pocket, anything is possible. It is undeniable that this technology has been a true lifeline during these challenging times.

Grattitude

Amidst the challenges we have faced, I have been humbled and uplifted by the overwhelming support we have received from our communities. The heartfelt messages of encouragement and acts of kindness have served as an unwavering source of strength, underscoring the profound goodness and compassion that reside within humanity.

Each day presents its unique set of trials, but we confront them with unwavering unity and boundless hope. The path to recovery stretches before us, demanding perseverance and resilience, but we traverse it one step at a time, unwavering in our commitment to each other’s well-being.

Sharing this personal journey with you today is an acknowledgement of the strength we have discovered in the midst of the unexpected. Life may hurl unexpected curveballs our way, but it is our response to these challenges that truly defines us.

As we continue to adapt to our new normal, I eagerly anticipate reconnecting with the world of technology and coding that has always been a significant part of my life. In the meantime, I urge you to embrace your innate resilience, to forge ahead with unwavering determination, and to remember that within each of us lies the strength to overcome life’s most unexpected trials.

With profound gratitude,

Dillon

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