I was this girl in High School (and I really regret it)
I don't think I've ever told this story before but it's so relevant to my life today and runs so deeply through my being, that it's worth sharing, I think.
I grew up a 90s kid. The internet was just becoming a thing. I felt uncool because I didn't have AOL but eventually got AIM and life was super fun. Being able to chat with multiple friends at once was the coolest thing ever and it really helped me get through the awkwardness of teenagerhood.
I also grew up the child of a dad who loved computers and technology. Although his job was insurance back then, he's always had a fascination for technology and tinkering and taking things apart to put them back together again. As such, I have vivid memories of sitting on the living room floor with my dad with a desktop computer box wide open, all the parts and pieces exposed, trying to figure out how to fix something.
(As a matter of fact, I'm writing this from my parents' house right now and there's a computer sitting right next to me with its back off, motherboard, chips and wires exposed here too... guess not much has changed in 25+ years with my dad!)
To say I've always loved computers is a pretty accurate statement.
So looking back I often ask myself WHY, THEN, didn't I take more computer classes???
I remember walking by the computer lab in school and looking in, watching the BOYS learning photoshop and other cool computer programs and there were maybe 2 girls in there...
I know a little bit about why...
One reason is that "those kids" to me, for some reason, seemed to be the riskier kids and ones I didn't think I'd get along with. They were the ones who liked to make noise and disrupt class and some were the ones that frequented detention. I was a "good kid" (oh so much more I can dive into on THIS in future posts). I hesitated back then to go into classrooms filled with those kids.
In retrospect, though, I went to parties will all of those kids so WHAT WAS I AFRAID OF?? Geesh, Leanne! Get over it!
The other reason, though, is that I feel that computers weren't a "girl thing." It sounds sort of stupid to say that in 2022 but when I look back, computers were more of a "boy thing." Who made up that stupid rule???
This is getting me so worked up and so intrigued.
Why was it - or why was it my perception - that computers were for boys (or "Tomboy" type girls), and not for ME... the girly girl cheerleader???
Was this just a mask I wore? A persona I exemplified?
If I loved computers so much, WHY DID I NEVER TAKE ANY COMPUTER CLASSES???
It's pretty baffling, really.
But now that I know better, I know that I can do better.
One main mission I have in life is to EMPOWER more women and girls to get comfortable with their computers.
We weren't taught this shit in school like the boys were!
I had a lot of catching up to do when I got out of college to teach myself photoshop and other things but because I love it so much, it tends to just come naturally to me.
And because I'm the daughter of a computer lover and tech trainer, I've picked up the innate ability to Teach, Train and Empower others through their tech frustrations - a skill I'm particularly proud of now.
I am so freaking passionate about women learning these skills... to be ALL that we can possibly be (btw I was a women's studies minor in college so I've also always been so super passionate about the amazingness of women!) which is why I have something new and exciting coming and I CAN'T FREAKING WAIT to share it with you!!!
For now, know that I adore you and I'm here for you if you need cheering or have a tech question. And also... what do you wish you had learned earlier in life that you later had to play catch up on?? Share with me in the comments! xo
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