Live Life More Abundantly


Back to School: Living and Learning


When my husband died at age 55, I came quickly to the blunt realization that life is short. I decided not to postpone the things on my wish list I had always wanted to do any longer. I came across a social media post by my friend Gwen Moore for a basic website coding class offered by Sisters Code: Awakening the Mature Geek called Weekend Website Warriors. I thought, “that sounds like me” and the format was perfect. I didn’t hesitate, I registered, booked my flight to Detroit and I met my fear and insecurities- originating from receiving a D in my college freshman computer programming class- head on.

First of all, I have to thank Gwen Moore and Harriet-Marcia Shakir for taking such good care of me in Detroit. These women are part of my growing sisterhood of accomplished, smart, warm and giving humans. They helped me during such a sensitive time, one month after my husband’s passing. Thank you ladies! 

When I arrived at the class, I was instantly enveloped with warmth, familiarity, and good vibes by a room full of women of all ages and walks of life. The instructor, Vee, was funny, firm and captain of our ship. We were on a journey together and she commanded the course with deft expertise, while steering us through the waves of information and lulls of ignorance. Our crew of instructors gave us personal attention and we all arrived at the final destination of a personalized website designed using HTML, JavaScript and CSS.

But the most impressive person was Marlin Williams, founder of Sister Code. She met with me and we chatted about why I flew from Florida (through Houston!) to attend the course. She even recorded our conversation! We talked about our mutual connection with Gwen and how her method of women teaching women about coding in Detroit was an idea worth franchising to other cities. Marlin’s personal story was so inspiring and I could relate to so much of her experience. She planted a seed of what’s possible for me.

I left her class and Detroit with renewed optimism and confidence that I could still learn hard things. Even with a masters in engineering, it’s possible to hold oneself back from trying new things. But my biggest gift from Gwen, Harriet and Marlin was that I could open my heart, and share my past hurts or future desires with sisters who listen, stretch and support you. #HappySistersDay.

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