Stepping Off

I’m stepping off the cliff without a ‘chute. There’s a net, a buffer, but I’m not expecting to gracefully float down while I admire the scenery. I’ll probably tumble, flailing my arms and legs, then when I hit I’ll bounce around until finally I’ll settle in. I’ll take one more look up the mountainside, then roll off the net into whatever is next.

After 17 years of freelancing, I’m closing the doors on my web design business.

This isn’t something I’ve come to lightly.

I built Pixel Currents into what I wanted and needed; it was always meant to be a part-time gig, something I could do in my home, making my own hours, with only as much pressure as I was willing to take on.

It has allowed me to be always available to my kids and family.

It has given me unique windows into the worlds of my clients.

It has forced me to stay current as technology changes.

It has given me opportunities to travel, learn, meet incredible people, to expand in ways I never imagined.

It has always been an outlet for creativity, the need I was fulfilling when I first peeked behind a webpage at the code 19 years ago.

I once envisioned Pixel Currents as an umbrella, under which I would not only build and customize websites, but write, create photos and videos, and build somethings with someone or someones. I’ve come to realize that instead I created more of a limited space that needed to be broken down. So down it comes, and I’m back to just me, in the world.

As I’m standing here on the edge, I feel the panic rising. To keep it at bay, I take one last look at my net.

I code. I don’t think I’ll ever stop playing in the HTML/CSS sandbox. I still get a thrill turning letters and numbers into something visual. I write. I’ve been writing (nothing I’m quite ready to share) more than I have since college. I’m taking photos daily (usually sharing at least one on Instagram!)

I teach. I can promote the hell out of projects and things that I love. I am the calm eye in most storms, I can find the common ground and focus others’ anger and passion into goal-seeking energy (oh, the practice raising three boys gave me with this!)

I have the full support of my husband, kids, family, and friends.

I have no idea what happens next.