When I graduated with my Masters in Education, I thought for sure I had my life all figured out. Ever since I was a little girl, I knew I wanted to be a teacher. I always assumed I would do that until the day I was ready to retire. My mom had worked in the school system and ‘teacher’ was always an occupation we were taught when we were younger, as something a lot of women grow up to be. So, I knew that was exactly what I had to do.
However, becoming a teacher wasn’t going to work out for me. The new state I moved to required more schooling based on their state, along with their specific exam. All things I didn’t have the strength or desire to do. But I knew I wasn’t going to give up. Helping and teaching others, especially children, was something I thought I had always wanted to do.
If I couldn’t become a teacher, what else was out there? A neighbor of ours had introduced me to a behavior therapist, who worked with their son. Behavior therapy sounded amazing and only required to take a few more classes to earn the certification. So, I began this new journey, feeling confident and ready. I received a job right away and it was so rewarding yet still, extremely exhausting. I met so many amazing families and children. Both who taught me so much about life and about myself. My heart felt so full. I finally had felt like this was where I was supposed to be.
But when endometriosis began to show up, everyday was a constant battle of whether or not I was going to be able to give my absolute best to these children. And honestly, most days I couldn’t. I was tired, cranky and my patience was low. I wanted to cry, scream and run away. Quitting my job sounded like the perfect thing to do, but I knew I couldn’t. These families depended on me to help their children.
So, I dealt with both. For a while. Endometriosis and a job that made me cry every single night and morning. A job that I dreaded going to. A job that exhausted me and pained me so much.
One day it finally hit me that I needed to stop. I needed to quit and figure out something else. I was killing myself. I wasn’t living. I was dying a little every day. And parts of me felt guilty saying that. I felt ungrateful that I was complaining about having a job. I felt ungrateful that I could say all of this about working with children who needed so much help. I felt like I was such a bad person for not wanting to do this anymore.
And to this day, that feeling still lingers over me. But graduating with a Master’s degree, and now not using it- doesn’t make me a failure. [this took forever to understand]. The choice I took to leave a draining job and path I was on, to search for and find something that would be better for me, took courage.
Walking away from my past helped me realize I didn’t have to stay stuck living a life I thought I had to. A life I thought would please others and was socially acceptable. Behind all of those thoughts of things I ‘thought’ I always wanted to do, were my real dreams. Dreams I knew people would think were silly, stupid and would never work. But you know what, now, I am building the life I 100% know I want. The life I know I deserve. The life others may not agree with or think is ‘acceptable’. And, I AM HAPPY. Let me say that again…I AM HAPPY.
You are not what your degree says you are. Some people truly love what they go to school for, and that is just so amazing for them. But others, feel stuck. Because of a piece of paper that tells them what they “SHOULD” be doing. That was me for 9 years. 9 years I tried to convince myself of this life I was suppose to be living. I tried settling with what I was given. But take it from me, DO NOT SETTLE. You were made for so much more.
Remember, there isn’t one specific career that makes you more successful than someone else. There isn’t a specific path you HAVE to follow. The only path you should be following is your heart, and what you want to do. You don’t have to stay stuck. You can choose right now the path you want to be on. There is joy and happiness waiting behind that fear and uncertainty. Let it shine through.
Dream big with me and find this adorable tee-shirt here.