Lessons Learned With Web Design

Occasionally, my job requires a little bit of finagling. That fine-tuned earnest desire that if I hold my tongue a certain way and close my eyes, the website will magically be coded and colored and presented to the client.

I’ve worked on a training course website for one of our most kind and gracious clients, the kind that makes you really want to go above and beyond your best.  They gave us a small request to change the layout of the training course. A little bit of code and some layout and we should be done.

That was my hope anyway. It’s been years since I’ve read or written code. When I did, it was back in the days of HTML-only sites. CSS was the new kid on the scene. PHP was still a glimmer in the Web’s eye.

So, here I am with a site that’s way out of my league. I turned to the world’s cheapest university for help. Tons of tutorials and hours of Youtube later, and I was still nowhere near an answer.

Our client, who was very patient with us, finally asked for the wrap-up. So, the searching began again. And then, eureka! I saw the answer.

It was there in front of me the entire time as part of the instructions for using the site’s shortcode. An hour later, I had a layout the client and I both loved.

When we started the site, I was having to relearn a lot of the coding I had left unused on the shelf in the back of my mind. Cobwebs and dust blown off, it creaked and groaned and sighed out of the frustration of years of idleness. With all that yesteryear sediment floating around, I couldn’t see the answer.

Having to relearn what I knew and learn some new skills along the way opened the door for me to finally understand what the instructions meant.

We do this in life. Learning the same things again and again. Missing what’s in front of us while we try to draw on what we’ve already learned. Don’t get discouraged – well, okay, get discouraged because its normal to feel frustrated. Just don’t let it keep you from digging, learning, and growing. Those repetitive experiences are deepening our understanding of the world around us.

One day, probably sooner than we expect, we’ll see the answer.

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