A Bit About Me: Education is The Key to Success!…
….Or Just Lots of General Regret, Self-Doubt, and Student Loan Debt….
As I might have mentioned, I have many interests. When I was young I wanted to be so many things when I grew-up. In high school I narrowed it down to 3 career paths to study in college. Those career paths were physical therapy, mortuary sciences, and art. I was weird kid (possibly more on that some other time), ok. I’m still abit weird now. Looking back on that now it’s like I wanted to be the next Da Vinci. I guess I’m a regular renaissance man. 😀
I was pretty talented in art and thought it would be a waste for me to not be an artist. So I studied fine arts in community college which consisted of painting, drawing, and computer art/animation. In art school I studied mostly sculpture, designed objects, and art with technology.
While in art school I developed an interest in art therapy and 2 years after graduating from art school I went back to my local university and studied psychology for 2 years in the hopes to get into to an art therapy/counseling program. With my financial situation, I wasn’t able to attend schools in my area for art therapy as they just weren’t affordable and I couldn’t go away for school because of my father’s poor physical condition (I want to say not to feel sorry for him, because he’s an asshole and did it to himself, but I don’t want to be that bitter about it all. Most likely more on that at a later date). Also I felt bad at the possibility of leaving my mother behind to deal with my dad alone.
I was however able to get in to the counseling master’s program at my local university. For my first semester in the program I took a couple intro classes. I learned a lot about counseling and about myself. I realized that while counseling and art therapy is something I want to do, I can do that later in life, as I originally planned. What I want and need in my life is a stable, decent paying career. Something that interests me and that would take about 2-ish years to get a degree in. I always had an interest in technology, so I decided to study computer science, for better or for worse.
I soon realized however that the way that most of the classes were being taught at the school I’m attending aren’t very conducive to actually learning the material. Left feeling unsatisfied yet again, I now find myself at a sort of cross roads.
If you’re reading this going “You probably know a lot of shit about art. Why don’t you have a cool art job?” Well my dear reader, remember I kind of mentioned a 2 year gap between graduating from arts school and going back to school to study psych? Well I decided to take a year off to enjoy life for once. And I did for the most part. But I didn’t do as much as I wanted to for various reasons, and was quite bored with being bored. After that year I spent my time job searching…and searching…and searching.
I was searching for something that was close to home because of my family situation which kind of excluded that cool art job in the city, so my other option was finding something that I wouldn’t completely hate myself while working at. I would send out 3-5 resumes each week for about 3 months and only get maybe 2 interviews. Most places said I was either over qualified or inexperienced. And I’m sure seeing a year gap in my resume made me more unlikely to get a job. Honestly though it was more like a 3 year gap since I wasn’t working while I was in art school so I could focus on my studies.
Anyway, it was basically a cycle of sending out a bunch of resumes, hearing next to nothing back, getting discouraged and then wallowing in self pity for a month or so before realizing I really needed a job and repeated the process. Once I started going back to school though I was able to get a work study grant, working in the student life office. It was a nice little job that allowed me to meet new people and get some more experience under my belt and make me a bit more of a desirable job candidate. After about a year of working there I was able to get 2 part time jobs, one as a cashier and another as a gaming parlor attendant at a video game slot machine place.
During the course of that 2 year gap however, I wouldn’t necessarily say I was unemployed, more like underemployed since I was technically kind of working but I just wasn’t getting paid for it. Sometimes I was even busy with my underemployment jobs. That made me feel less like a failure at least, but a failure still nonetheless. And that is one of my main issues that I think a lot of people can relate to. I think I failed or that I’m failing, but really I’m just not satisfied with where I am or what I’m doing, or my efforts to get to where I want to be and do what I want to do.
Yet with all my uncertainty, self-doubt, and possible regret about what I’ve done and haven’t done education and career wise, so far what I’ve learned from my experience is that even though I feel like a failure, I’m not. And I really need to remember that, and stop beating myself up over it. And I think alot people need to remember that too. I’ve done a lot and learned a lot, but I haven’t failed. Because failure is when you stop trying, and I will keep trying until I finally get to where I want/need to be, even if it takes me a life time. I’m ok with that. And even if I don’t quite make it there before my time comes to an end, as long as I’ve shared my ideas and thoughts with the world, which is what I’m trying to do now with this blog, I think that will be ok too.
As for what I want to do with my life our where I want to be, that will be another topic for another day. For now, thank you for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it.
(For those of you who are wondering, the picture is of a piece I did, spray foam on canvas and acrylic paint, 2010)
May your dreams be filled with wonder,