I don’t know if I’ve updated what’s been going on with me in one space for a while. I know I’ve mentioned bits and pieces on Instagram and in posts, but I thought I’d share what I’ve been working on.
Right now I’m finishing up the last few classes of my degree. It’s taken FOREVER to get to the end of this because I switched majors a couple of years ago after taking a several year break. And I switched colleges. Which meant some classes I had to do again and some I had to complete because they were required by the new one, and some were new for my degree.
Anyway, for a long time I had no idea what I wanted to do. I thought I wanted to teach, and did for a couple of years, but then after Bella was born I realized I really didn’t want to do all that work (and my year was simple compared to most teachers). That’s when I put school on hold for a while.
Then I went to Zimbabwe in 2014, and I heard one of the World Vision sponsored kids talk about how he gets up at 5am, walks miles to school, walks back to study all evening, and then do chores and help around the house. And he was so determined to get an education. I watched his enthusiasm and gratefulness to be able to go to school – any school – and my heart was tugged. I realized I’d taken the ease of our school options and education in the US for granted, completely. I also realized how I probably could only do what I wanted with my life if I went back to school.
2 1/2 years later, his eager face still pops up in my mind when I think about giving up.
After I got home, I applied to Liberty University and wanted to major in Psychology. But my advisor listened to my plans and said that I’d be better off getting an Interdisciplinary degree with all the courses I already had done, and taking six psych classes so that I could apply for a master’s in counseling. She said with what I wanted to do, a bachelor’s in psychology wouldn’t help me much, and it would take a lot longer to graduate.
So I switched my major to that and started back up in school. I took 4 courses right off the bat. Now here’s what you should know about Liberty – their classes are 8 weeks. So instead of taking 4 classes over 16 weeks like a traditional school with two semesters, you take that class in half the time. It’s intense and I didn’t realize how much until I had started all of them and felt like I was drowning in school.
Then I realized two weeks in that I was pregnant with Charlotte.
So that was a very interesting year. 😉
I kept at it, even in the middle of several more life changing things that happened, and took semester breaks when I needed to. I learned that with two kids, I need to take one a time (which means I can do one 8 week and another 8 week back to back and still be half time). Since they’re both still little and will need me around for a long while, I’m able to take my time with this.
I’m here to start on my (loooooong) paper for school, but first had to listen to @thefarmacistala talk about using fennel oil (and oregano) in pregnancy. She’s fascinating. Hopefully after this I can stop procrastinating 😐#probablynot #bestworkunderpressure #maybeillwriteablog #orpostanotherIG #yleo
At first, I wondered if I would still want to do what I’d set out to when I was at the end of my degree. I hoped so. But here I am, ready to apply for my master’s this fall, and I am even more ready and excited.
My goal and hope is to become a professional counselor, licensed and all, and then work with an organization (or several) who need on call crisis workers to go places where there have been disasters or attacks and work with the victims for immediate crisis management. I know the Red Cross does this, and I’ve looked into several other companies.
My focus (since I was able to pick my psych classes the past few years) is on trauma and grief and on working in a multi-cultural setting. I’ve been taking classes that help with that.
It’s intense. But it’s also the most interesting, wonderful, challenging work I’ve ever done. I absolutely love it. Sometimes it can trigger me in unexpected ways, but even then I’m able to work through it in my therapy sessions. My therapist has been a wealth of knowledge and encouragement for me in this process.
I plan on staying with Liberty for my master’s degree. They are waiting on CACREP certification this summer of their online Professional Counseling program (which is a huge, huge deal). I’d only be able to work with military (if I work at a clinic/center) if I went to a school that was CACREP certified because of the way Tricare works. Liberty’s residential program already is approved, so I’m hoping the online won’t have any issues. I’ll have to do an internship and the rest of that at the end of my degree somewhere around here.
Sam and my family have been so supportive through all of this. I love having something to work towards. I know things can change, I may end up somewhere I never thought of, but I love being able to pursue this and feel like my story, my life, will continue to make a difference in other lives. That is important to me – I have been on the receiving end of so much kindness and therapy and knowledge – I want to know that it didn’t get lost out there in my own little life bubble.
I’ll keep updating as I get closer to all of this 🙂