Isolation Photo Project, Day 34

I have been researching multi-factor authentication options for personal computers. I have a YubiKey but use it only as a secondary factor for access to my personal Dropbox from my Mac. There was some chatter on the company Security Architecture group about ways we can maintain a certain level of risk now that 99% of the 500+ employees are remote workers. Now that most people have 24-hour roommates, the company can't provide the same level of assurance for the physical security of staff-owned computers and premises. There are some risks they've had to accept temporarily but, given that they have responsibilities to the FED and member banks, there is pressure from audit and compliance to improve security posture. I'm expecting that security architecture will have to develop a strategy. We are considered the first line of defence.

I didn't post yesterday because of the way the evening went. Bhavna and I went out for a hike on the Kulak Preserve in Hopewell which is about a fifteen-minute drive from home.

The trail was still very wet and muddy from the previous day's rain. After about thirty minutes of sloshing around, we called it quits. Bhavna’s sister suggested we come to hang out in her backyard. We had a great experience a few weeks ago where we said in the back yard, eight feet apart and chatted for about one hour. It was good. We were hoping to repeat that experience.

But I think social isolation from her family has been too much for my sister-in-law. The four siblings are still feeling the pain of the loss of their father. She’s the baby girl. She lost her father but couldn’t lean on the support of family to comfort her. Last night she fell apart completely, sitting in her chair sobbing uncontrollably to my wife that she just wanted a hug. But of course, we couldn’t. My wife started crying, watching her baby sister in pain. Her husband took her inside, and the hangout was over.

I didn’t sleep well last night.

I found some solace in this Facebook post by Brené Brown:

I believe all of these things are true. I believe grace and rest are key. Feeling and owning our own shit instead of working it out on others is key. When we slip up, apologizing to the people we offload on is key.

And, when we hit that wall, sometimes courage looks like scaling it or breaking through it. AND, sometimes courage is building a fort against the wall and taking a nap.

For those of us with kids, I don't think we pretend that the wall doesn't exist.

Rather than sucking it up and pushing through, we name it. We help them understand that invisible wall that they will run into hundreds and hundreds of times in their lives. We model what it takes to recognize it and how tough it can be to choose the right strategy: scaling, reaching out for a lift, and/or resting. Naming, modeling, and not having answers is how we help them feel less alone or scared when they face their own wall.

Hard days are real because this is hard.

Stay awkward, kind and brave enough to rest and feel,


Submitted as part of the 100DaysToOffload project.

Author: Khürt Williams

I work in application security architecture and I live in Montgomery Township, New Jersey with my wife Bhavna. I am passionate about photography. Expect to find writing on cybersecurity, tropical aquariums, terrariums, hiking, craft breweries, and bird photography.