I Still Dream…
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, …”
March 9th 2017, 2:15pm. Google Photos prompts me to “Rediscover this day”. Curious, I follow it to find myself browsing a few photos from my last weeks at Google. I transport to another time.
March 2015. I collect my last paycheck at Google and walk out of campus. I had dreams with no plans, but dreams that I knew needed to be pursued. I think about the endearing message from my boss to HR — “This is absolutely a regretted departure. We’d do anything to keep her if we could.” I think about the interviewer’s words —
“We wish you would return, but then we don’t. Not in the present manner anyway.”
It was the nicest way to say goodbye to someone pursuing an unknown, risky proposition with just dreams.
Just like that, I had done what I could never have imagined myself doing. Leaving the security of a job I absolutely, positively loved, to build something I didn’t know I was capable of building. Especially at a time when I had young kids. Especially knowing that I hate feeling financially dependent. Especially knowing that I’m a people person who hated working from home.
Two years in, I’ve never been better and I’ve never been worse, all at the same time.
March 9th 2017, 3pm. A high school student stood me up on an interview call. I hold my head up and send a text asking if she’s still interested in the job. I check off her name in red — my green:red tally right now is at 8:114. 228 emails and 114 iMessages later, I was able to connect with 8 students. That was a new low.
When it comes to teenagers, my credentials did not matter. These interactions are both humbling and enlightening.
March 9th 2017, 5:30pm. As I drive my kids home, I get a bit emotional and tell them that I need their support more than ever at this crucial stage of Urban. That I cannot make it all happen without it. To my surprise, they are very mature about it. They even offer their entire piggybank collection, should I need it!
March 10th 2017, 4pm. I walk out of an investor meeting feeling charged. Knowing that we have investors who believe in us is a blessing!
We’re working through the biggest and the fastest pivot we’ve ever done. Most teams will take months to make this pivot. We’re doing it in a week. It’s both nerve-wracking and incredibly fulfilling at the same time.
March 11th 2017, 2am. I‘m done for the day. I have dreams, but now with plans. And together with an amazing team, we’re executing the well crafted plans to bring those dreams to life.
Two years in, with several challenges along the way, I still dream. That’s what makes it all worth it!
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