I had to share these two photos with you. I think they are really funny. They keep things on the level, they show the real deal. And I think they tell a good story. The one about the Art of Hackery.
Most of the time, I feel like a hack. A cheap, mediocre, or second-rate practitioner, as defined by Urban Dictionary.
I’m self taught in almost everything related to this field of content creation. Aside from being a maker from birth, I’ve had no formal training in the rest. I had no idea this type of job even existed when I studied.
I work in a room of my (tiny) house. Most days, the floor (and every work surface) is a mine field of figurines, cars, markers and food. Oh and my work hours are odd to say the least.
My co-workers are under the age of 6 and some days, their social interactions border on abysmal.
I feel totally awkward in front of the camera, as demonstrated in the photo above. An accidental snap as I was drawing up a little more resolve to get a few more photos of myself for BBBY.
There are some days I would give every dollar I have just to get 5 solid minutes to think straight.
The phrase ‘making it up as I go along’ describes this adventure of mine.
Below, I’m trying to use my foot to press the camera remote. Didn’t get it right the first time.
But here’s the thing. The truth is, I might be a hack. My set up is not magazine worthy. My path was and is not straight. I am most certainly partially crazy. But I know I’m not the only one. No matter what is in the magazines or on the pin boards, I know others in the same situation. Despite the belief that one’s career trajectory is a straight line to the top, it rarely is so. The Art of Hackery is to own the hack-ness. Embrace it. It’s the only option if you want something bad enough. Take the label, own it and keep moving forward.
I want this profession and I crave the challenge. There are so (so) many facets and points of interests and areas in which to learn that a dull moment is hard to come by. I might be self taught but the learning process is a blast. Gaining knowledge, pushing myself, expanding my brain – all fantastic to me.
My work space is a bedroom in my house but I’ve make it my own. It has the best daylight. It’s not the old brick loft I dreamt of with the multi-pane windows and gorgeous southern light but it works. And who knows what the future will bring. I still have hope.
My co-workers might struggle with things like self-control, emotional outbursts and wailing for long periods for no reason at all but I’m not just a maker, I’m a mom. I am blessed to have the opportunity to be with them while I work. I do struggle to piece together a few moments of clarity but nothing can replace the midday tickle-fests, hilarious conversations and snuggles I get. In the end, I will never wish I worked more but I will be thankful for our time together.
Hack or not, this is right for me right now. The challenge, the dreaming, the experimenting, the limitlessness of it. It’s scary and intimidating and maddening but it’s where I fit. And it’s only by the hand from above I am doing this, that I made it to this point, the hack that I am.
So if you’re a hack like me, own it. Don’t let it hold you back. ‘Fake it till you make it’ or ‘step off the cliff and see if you fly’ or something like that. If you want it, bust your butt for it. Don’t let them see you sweat. If you crash and burn, learn from it. You might end up where you should have been all along. Believe in you and your path. You’re worth it. Hack-ness and all.