Back in June I felt elated as I handed in my final portfolio. All of the tears, late night study sessions, questioning about what I was doing and general stress had come to an end and I jumped for joy as I looked and realised – I had done it! For the first time in years I had actually stuck to something. I had found my passion (and career path) and I had seen it to the end. I had accomplished a course and It felt absolutely mint!
Since September 2017 I have been going to college every Wednesday night to study a Level 3 Diploma in Counselling Skills. Back in the Summer I came to the realisation that counselling would make a great career for me and would be great around the family too in these coming years. After a lot of thinking and praying about it, it just seemed such a clear and fulfilling path to take. It felt like it would fit me so well and though it might sound strange to some, it felt like a calling!! It made me really excited.
The more I contemplated it as an option, I thought about how it would use both my natural talents and life experiences and bring them together to be something that would be beneficial to others. I thought about how it would be a job that really mattered and I would be doing something that was as varied as I am day to day. As I looked at everything I had ever done in my life; from after school jobs, to full time jobs, and from volunteer work and subject interests, it all suddenly became less random and seemingly indecisive, and came together under this umbrella of giving me various experiences, talents and interests that all had a common thread of preparing me to be able to be a therapist at this stage in my life.
I felt more confident and clear about my life and my life choices/experiences than I have ever previously done. And so I went for it – the first step – A level 3 Diploma in counselling skills … part-time!
I kept it a secret for a while. I suppose I didn’t want to have to tell a lot of people about it and then feel like a failure if down the road it didn’t go to plan. I wanted to avoid the awkwardness of if I did quit like I have done so often before, that people wouldn’t know and judge. I know now thats really silly but at the time, and the me back in September, that’s what felt right.
The difference this time though was that I was really invested. I knew deep down that however hard it was, this was what I needed to do and what I wanted to be.
I felt like I had found my calling in life – it was something I enjoyed learning about and practicing and it was helping me grow in incredible ways too. I knew that, because of the things we were studying, that to push and fight through the hard things would eventually make me a better person and better capable in my life as well as being capable of helping and guiding others on their journeys.
I loved the theory – I found it super interesting. And I enjoyed putting my skills into practice and working with people. It felt good to know my limits and interests and comfortable with both.
I learnt from this course so much about me – my excuses, my fears, my weaknesses and judgements of others, and how to combat them and overcome them. I also grew in confidence as I discovered my strengths and who I really am and wanted to be in life. I learnt the tools to own my choices and how to handle worrying situations. And it was those latter lessons (amongst others) that made me more determined than ever to accomplish this course and progress to be more. It became less about just doing this course but then my level 4 and eventual degree too and to be practicing when all of my kids would be in full time school.
I experienced a lot of struggles but a lot of growth too and with that it has been great to see what I can become and offer to the world. It has felt good to discover parts of me that have been suppressed by difficulty or how I have taken others behaviours towards me and it has been so great to be more open minded and more self confident. I have loved feeling secure in myself and my life/day to day choices. I have enjoyed the freedom of being okay with where I am at and knowing how I can become whoever I want to be. I have felt fulfilled to be able to accept and be okay with my weaknesses and I feel empowered by knowing my strengths and talents.
I guess you could say this course has helped me feel accomplished because I have not only completed something around a young family, but I found me in the process. And there I found how to be okay with all of my scars, weaknesses, flaws, choices, gifts and abilities – and that was a wonderful feeling.
Collecting my Certificate
Last Thursday I went to collect my certificate – I had accomplished the first step to being a counsellor. I had completed it and now to pass it felt even better than completing it in the first place.
I had accomplished my goal and it was so great.
It really wasn’t easy to study around kids (not easy at all) and it wasn’t easy to study for a topic that at times was hugely sensitive and heavy. A subject that resurfaced a lot of pain and highlighted a lot of painful things and insecurities about me, but I did it. I persevered, I worked through those hard times with my new friends and persoanlly and I smashed down the mental walls I had built up. I dealt with things I needed to that were holding me back…and then with lots of study and essays – I did it – I passed!!
I am so proud of my little certificate. I am so proud of my progress.
I haven’t just accomplished a course people, I have overcome great barriers and personal insecurities. I have found a purpose and passion beyond that of motherhood and something that feels so right for me to be doing in life. I love the vast options that being a therapist offers and in the process of all of this discovery, I have made brilliant friends from all walks of life.
This certificate is a symbol of the power I have to do hard things and to be ever growing and being better on a personal level. It shows me, however hard it is some weeks with a young family to study, I can still reach my personal goals and I become someone to make a difference in the world. I can reach my educational and life goals.
This certificate represents hours of work, lots of tears, and it stands as a reminder that I have power!
I look forward to my next course. I know it will be harder, it will require more commitment and dedication and more work and balancing of family life. But I am looking forward to more personal growth, more knowledge on a topic that completely fascinates me, and I look forward to at last doing something I am very passionate about and feel very strongly is something I was always meant to do (but that needed me to experience a few things before I would be fully equipped to do it).
Thank you so much to my friends and family that helped me power through and accomplish a course that was both challenging but hugely satisfying!