About five years ago, I took a chance and sent in a cover letter and too-thin resumé to the email address jobs@automattic.com. And then I did it twice more over the succeeding months.

A little over four years ago, two gentlemen named Michael Pick and Matt Mullenweg took a chance and gave a guy with entirely the wrong masters degree and who was working in the traditional publishing business two successive interviews and then a trial for helping to manage a thing called WordPress.tv.

A tiny bit over four years ago, Matt took a chance and gave that same guy a full-time offer to join a company that was still small, but growing. I still hadn’t met anyone from the company.

And four years ago today, I started my first day full-time at Automattic, taking a chance and leaving behind that publishing job to join a growing company, work from wherever I wanted, and get paid to work with the software I was increasingly using both inside and outside of work.

In the last four years, Automattic and I have proceeded to take successive chances both on each other and on things in general. It’s been a surreal adventure the whole way and I still have days where I sit down (or stand!) to work and wonder how I got here. I don’t think that feeling will ever go away.

And it’s taken me from working on videos for WordPress.tv, to supporting WordPress.com users in multiple forms, to my current assignment of working with some of the biggest publishers and media companies in the world hosting sites on WordPress.com VIP. (I spent my last trip to New York agape at how many buildings I saw with our clients’ logos on them. It was crazy.)

It’s been four wild years so far. I’ve met some of the most amazing people and formed some pretty great friendships along the way. Automattic is still growing, and it’s still providing me with opportunity to improve myself, learn new things, and stretch my abilities.

So, hey. Four years is a big deal. I’ve worked here longer than anywhere else now.

Here’s to many more years of amazing people, amazing opportunities, and taking chances.

Today marks the first anniversary of my joining Automattic full-time. It’s been one year of working alongside those who Matt calls “the best people in the world.” (You can read my thoughts on that first day here.) It’s amazing to me that it’s been that long—it feels like just yesterday I was going through training and learning the basics of how to work behind-the-scenes on WordPress.com. I suppose time really does fly when you are having fun.

In the last year, I have travelled to the same location as and met my fellow Automatticians five times: once to San Francisco upon first starting, once to Austin for SXSW, a second time to SF for WordCamp San Francisco, once to Lisbon, Portugal to meet with my fellow Happiness Engineers, and once to Seaside, Florida for my first company-wide meetup. I’ve replied to support requests from WordPress.com users over 18,000 times. I’ve worked daily with a team of people dedicated to making the blogging experience of millions better—people I call colleagues and friends.

I love what I do, I love the way we work, and I love the people I get to share the experience with. It’s my belief that none of us could do this thing without the rest of us. I’m part of a team and a family and I hope to be working as part of that team for a long time to come. We work hard, we take what we do seriously, yet we also know how to have fun and enjoy the ride.

I may brag about it a bit too much, but I count myself as fortunate to have the opportunity to get paid for doing something I love to do.

To celebrate the occasion, Amanda made me this completely awesome cake, which I know was pictured above, but I love it so much I want to post the full picture again here:

I know it’s somewhat conceited, but I think this is one of the finest cakes my wife has yet made, and it made me feel pretty special. She’s been supportive of this venture of mine the whole way, from the first day I talked about applying, through my working two jobs while I learned the Automattic ropes, to today, and I couldn’t do what I do without her. Thanks, wife of mine!

Here’s to the next year.