It was New Year's Day, 2016. We went to Target to get what we might need given that we didn't know where we'd be living exactly but we knew we might not have a kitchen.
A tiny portable stovetop, some pots and pans. My partner and I packed up two suitcases, our two cats, and and said it's time to start living a happier life.
It was a dark time. I was stressed, I had developed daily panic attacks. I had basically worked nonstop for many years and had a rough, abusive time in life while doing so. I wasn't sure what I wanted to do. My whole life I'd pushed forward clinging onto the hope that things would be better in the future, that I just needed to work hard for the future, that I'd take a break in the future.
I did know I wanted to throw that attitude far, far away.
I wanted to be happy now.
I took what savings I had and rented us a room in a tiny town on the beach for a few months. I was scared. I talked to people from that hideaway remotely. Holy cow, I talked to lots of people. I helped them out mostly, not knowing where I was going myself.
And then with my dear friend who was in a similar state of mind, I started to pick up software contract work to keep afloat.
I moved to Seattle. That friend and I officially launched a business together because the contracts were just not drying up. I continued talking to lots of people, helping lots of people out, forming communities, joining communities. And oh yeah, programming.
Life was already happier than I'd ever known it to be. But then, it got even better. We got a product idea, Basis, and marched forward with that, and signed some of the biggest companies in the business to work with us.
We helped launch Intel's Project Alloy project, we helped out VR startups, Netflix funded Basis work, lots more that I'll be able to announce in the future.
We got involved in the community-- I spoke at conferences, hosted workshops, met with many people, we joined UW CoMotion Labs as members of a community of VR startups, joined VR/AR Collective, Seattle VR, Eastside VR. I got to give back to others and the community liberally, which was pretty special.
And all the while, it's felt like just doing this adventure with one of my best friends. And I get to spend plenty of time at home with my family, I get to live life feeling fairly free. I'm sure it'll only get better as Basis continues to take off.
One year ago, I let go of the life I had planned hoping that there would be something better out there.
I am happy now.
What a wild, strange year.