Sunday 31 July 2016


Well - thankfully, the powers that be allowed me to enroll on the module I want to study, so tonight, I finally pushed the big button, achieving the milestone I've been waiting for, of signing up for my final OU module.

Feels like there has been less pomp and ceremony than that actually warrants in my head, because of the convoluted route I had to take to get there.

So, come 1st October, I will be embarking on the final module of my OU journey.  Going to be interesting to find out what this course is like, and interesting to know what life will be like following the end of the journey!

Meanwhile the Software Developer journey is just beginning, I'm both excited and nervous to be doing it for real now, having just left the training room behind we are off to another one next week, albeit a brief one-day course.  Seems like that journey will be one of constant learning, something that excites me intensely.  (mind you I will be honest and admit that I would have liked a couple of weeks of 'new normal' before tootling off to do more's been lovely having time in the house again, and time to beat my son at cards, read him stories and take him swimming.)

Wednesday 27 July 2016

No further journey paused as another begins

Well, I have had to submit an appeal form to try and get onto the module that I need to study last - along with supporting documentation, for which I've used the massive training plan from our software developer training.

It's SO frustrating not knowing whether I can take the final step that I want along this OU road, particularly whilst 'real life' is going so much better.  But I am trying valiantly not to worry until I need to.

So - On the other side of the pond...

This week marked the beginning of the real road for the Software Developer journey - I've attempted a bit of an update over there on page 2 as I've been quite lax in my blogging commitments lately.  The first couple of days appeared to include lots and lots of software installation, not all of which went smoothly for some unknown reason.  Day 3 now, and starting to feel like I am settling in, although so aware of how much I don't know in comparison to the people I am working with.  Trying to maintain that confidence level that I built during training, there's nothing I'm not equal to learning even if there's lots of stuff that's not even vaguely familiar yet, I try to remember how overwhelming the start of the web services training was at first and how much it made sense by the end of the project.

It always was going to be a bit of an 'eek' moment this week, but I feel comfortable that I am in the right place to be making this journey, surrounded by helpful colleagues who thankfully know lots more than me, but don't seem to be averse to explaining stuff along the way (or leaving me to ponder when I want to too....)

Saturday 16 July 2016

Grr weekends...

Decided today to go 'push the button' to sign up for the final module, only to be told 'nope you don't meet entry requirements', there are courses which it says 'you would normally have completed x', but then that's been the case most of the way along, not once have I been refused entry past the gates.

And of course student registration helpline is helpfully open only 9 till 5 on a Saturday and not at all on a Sunday.  Which leaves me to stew over the weekend and contemplate whether any of the alternatives would be suitable.  Very frustrating.

Thursday 7 July 2016

...and the start of the end

In the next couple of days the button will be pushed to sign up for the final OU module, can't quite believe that a big part of my life finally has an end in sight!  I can't quite imagine the structure of life without it, it's been integral to how my life has been arranged for so many years now. (you don't plan a holiday when you have an assignment due etc...and don't get me started on bathing without a text book!!)

It comes at a time where, already I can't imagine what the next part is going to bring, a whole new world is opening in front of me, one I hope that I'm equal to, and that I hope to love as much as the journeys that have brought me thus far.

I still find it hard to imagine what 'real life' as a developer will look like, the training room environment has a shelter to it that I won't have in the real world, but that being said, the real world will involve returning to part time work which I am looking forward to immensely.  (Although I can imagine that at least some of my time may be spent hunched over a computer in exactly the same way on those 'non working days') It will be nice to spend some time just 'being' again, time with Phillip that I have missed out on, and time with both house and family and friends that I look forward to rebuilding after these long months of focus.

I've been taking 'baby steps' back into the real world, building up the activities slowly as if I were recuperating from something, it's kind of hard getting the brain and the body back into any kind of normality.  My BFF and I have gotten back to 'craft night' and very slowly I have picked up simple craft projects as something to do that doesn't involve a screen.  Until the end of the course I have been quite reluctant to do much more than this, as we still required excessive thought during the day, so the brain cells and body have had the night off most of the time since finishing the OU course.  Quite honestly I feel like it may be a while before I can tackle anything of complexity while I adjust to yet another New Normal, as yet unknown in structure and pace.

And then another couple of months and a new course to fill the 'spare hours' - I'm hoping that some of the structure of studying that I've built over the last year can stay with me, I've had to be even more disciplined with study time and how it fits in around the working life, so if I can maintain that, I can hope to go out on a high with a final Distinction that might swing me a good grade for the 'Honours Bit' and make that graduation day stand out in my mind even more next year.  Eek I get a ceremony next year!!

The end of the start....

Well a double achievement today.  Finished up my end of course project, with a day to spare.  Very happy with the final result, it's not spectacular but has been a major learning experience and one that I think can be built upon while I'm out in the real world.

That makes tomorrow the very last day of our training - we come in next week to review our work with the trainer, but after that it's onwards and upwards to the real world.  Visited with the team again yesterday while we were in the building for a meeting, SO excited to be going back, and they seem genuinely enthusiastic to have us come back.

So what about number 2 achievement?  Well - can't quite believe it, but I only went and managed a Distinction for TM354 - yippee!!  The results weren't due out till next Friday but something in me made me go check tonight.  Really happy, and very proud, feels like even more of an achievement this time round as I combined it with a massive commute and a full time intensive training schedule.  It was worth all the sleepless nights and lunchtimes spent revising as the only time left in the day where I was functional enough to take in information.

So - one smiley lady here!!