The Silent Semester: What I Did and Didn’t Do

Monday, January 2, 2012

Well, I left you all with a cliffhanger back in August, then never logged on again to bring you up to speed. Let’s start back there and work forward, and you’ll see that this semester proved to be a great experience.

The field review meeting went as well as I could have hoped, and the result was that I would be allowed to continue my schooling part time, gain experience at an informal internship, and hopefully begin a regular, Master’s level placement in my 2nd year of work through my school.  So, I dropped 2 of my 5 classes, keeping 8 credits, and began to intern at my placement, a technical high school campus.  I’ve been working in the student services office with a consultant for special populations and with the counselor. I work on making sure students are cared for, that their educational needs are met, and tending to any personal problems they may be experiencing. Additionally, I check in with students about grades and attendance issues.  I intern two days each week to make a total of 16 intern hours weekly.

In addition to the internship and my classes, I got two jobs: one as a nanny placement two days a week for an agency I’d worked for in

In addition to the internship and my classes, I got two jobs: one as a nanny placement two days a week for an agency I’d worked for in years past, and a seasonal job in a local craft store.  The nanny position and craft store position are in the same general area as the internship and my school so that I can travel easily from place to place.  I work, on average, between 15 and 20 hours at the nanny placement, and between 14 and 20 hours at the craft store.  That means that, between internship, craft store, and being a nanny, I usually have over 50 hours of commitment time each week outside of my classes and studying.  Sometimes the busy pace of my life felt overwhelming, but that was usually because some of my other thoughts and experiences felt overwhelming.

It didn’t take long for me to grow used to working full-time hours, as I needed to be more responsible and helpful at home.  It also didn’t take me long to realize that this time was just what I needed in order to grow and become ready for being a social worker.  I have become much more comfortable in interpersonal work and I have realized things about myself this semester that are wonderful. I have also realized some areas that I’m weak in, areas where weakness can bring shame. Above all, I’ve been learning to do my dreaming heart justice and at least investigate the interests that come to my mind or have been there for a long time.  At these times, it can be easy to doubt what I’m doing and wonder if I’m doing anything right.  The thing I’ve had to learn is, if I don’t ask myself all the questions and sincerely and deeply look for these answers, no one else will search them out for me. I want to emphasize that while I don’t always know these answers, I am absolutely confident that everything is going to work out for the best.

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