As I've been sharing, since late September I've embarked on a journey to remake myself technologically on two fronts:
- Learning to create a website
- Moving into the digital photography age (to, among other things, aid above mentioned website).
Primarily this has come about because as a writer, I need a web presence, and I need to give myself the tools to have that web presence. But I also want to learn these things as potential new additions to my resume, in hopes of making some sort of career change in the near future (though that whole path is still unclear to me).
But you know what? I'm in the midst of my second and third classes on this journey (XHTML/CSS & SEO) and I'm realizing something else. The capacity to learn is a gift from God. And it is a gift we frequently take for granted.
The desire to learn is hard-wired into us. Why else do small children put things in their mouth, touch the hot stove they were warned away from, or have a deep desire to press elevator buttons?
To learn. To experience life.
As we grow older, rites of passage are tied to learning--driver's ed and passing your exam to get your license (and your independence). Graduating from college into your chosen career path.
And some people simply enjoy being life-long students even if they have no particular career goal in mind.
Have you ever just burned with a desire to learn a long list of things? Then panicked in the next moment because you wondered how you could possibly live long enough to learn all you wanted to know? It's amazing, this gift of learning, of exploration.
It gives us inspiration to keep pressing forward to meet a new day. Learning something new gives us a way to help others, and to allow others to help us. It keeps us fresh and revives us.
My only hesitation about embarking on this web design journey was knowing that it was going to force me to table my writing for a while. But I have to be honest, it's been nice to have a break from my novels. Writing and the publishing industry was becoming stale to me. Taking a different path, learning new things, has been a breath of fresh air.
Learning something new is exciting. It refreshes my spirit, even though the going is very hard and very time-consuming and I despair whether or not I will grasp these coding languages as well as I need to. But I will come out a little wiser in the end.
And I suspect that it will in turn give me a new appreciation for my writing journey when I return to it, and I will tackle my next novel with renewed fire. I look forward to it already. 8-)