About that career change…

Back in high school, I didn’t have a clear idea of what I wanted to do. It still boggles my mind that high schoolers are expected to know. They’re not old enough to legally do much of anything else, they’re not yet emotionally matured, and yet they’re expected to pick a college and education path that will affect the rest of their lives. What?

There were a few things I was into–chorus, drama (acting, not starting drama), and various types of peer support. I enjoyed getting to know people and because I went to a small private high school, it wasn’t so cliquey that you couldn’t talk to certain people. I got to know many different personalities and enjoyed finding out what they were into. I realized people are not so different from each other. I liked learning what makes people tick. So I decided that since I didn’t want to be a starving artist, that I would go to college for Psychology.

I chose a college that was probably just a little too far away from home for someone who wasn’t very independent. And I was not successful. I wasn’t great at making new friends, and I felt isolated and insecure. I didn’t know how to ask my professors for help because I thought that college expected you to know what you’re doing. So gradually, I lost interest in pretty much everything. Oh yeah, and then there were the roommates, but maybe that’s best saved for another entry.

Long story short, I did not have a good experience. I ended up on academic probation and finally dropped out. I had met my husband by then (and that’s another story) and spent most of my time with him. We ended up moving back to my home state and I went to culinary school. I spent 10 years in cooking jobs where I never really felt comfortable. Now, I love cooking, but man, cooking for a living will make you hate it. Everything you enjoy about lovingly preparing the food, enjoying the aromas, tasting it for quality…wave it goodbye. Now it’s about speed and being able to turn out a product without using any of that painstaking love and attention.

I was constantly put in prep cook jobs, which was okay, because I really didn’t like the pressure of line cooking. But I felt like I was underachieving because I had a culinary arts degree and at the same time, I felt people expected me to know more than I actually did. The degree was mostly a curse.

So finally, I quit and decided to go back to school for Psychology. I wish I’d done it sooner, as I seem to be decent at college classes. I think it is the new phase of life that I’m in. I know how to ask for help and I’m closer in age to my professors than I am to my fellow students so I understand that they are human and generally want to help! Who would have thought?

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