I have a friend who is a therapist-in-training in the Bay Area who just started writing. I’m loving her posts. She’s working to be a therapist and is going to start working with a middle school population which brings back memories for all of us. Her latest post resonates deeply with me. She’s going to be working with middle schoolers.
Crap…” I thought, “not middle school… anything but middle school.” I immediately flashed back to my own middle-school experience. I entered 7th grade with a terrible hair-cut, glasses, braces, and skinny like an awkward string bean. My hand-me-down, decade-old clothes made me stand out from my wealthier peers who always had fresh, new clothes and great hair. I remember getting bullied on the bus mercilessly by 8th graders day in and day out. I remember holding back my tears on the bus, trying to look reassured while older girls would tease me and older boys would harass me. Suddenly, things I had necessarily forgotten were staring at me in the face. I didn’t want to work with adolescents… especially middle-schoolers.
Middle school brings back vivid memories for me too. Some good but many fearful and anxious. She closes with an honest bit of writing that I feel could have been written by anyone I know, myself included.
So how do I “adult” from here? Honestly? I have no idea. I’m guessing at it every day. I’m working on a website, I’m writing a blog, I’m networking, I’m taking risks at disappointing people with my career choices, I’m taking some time for my family and accepting financial hardship as a present, unavoidable (but hopefully temporary) reality. I’m trying to take criticism and uninformed advice in stride but hey – I’m not made of metal. I’m making poor choices and good choices, not having any idea which is which at any real-time moment. I’m open to advice, feedback, and opportunity. As a wonderful professor of mine once said, “the ego must be strong enough to allow itself to be defeated.” This is the making of the intern therapist… I think.
So… how do I adult from here?
I don’t know any more than she does, but I encourage you to follow along with her journey to figure it all out…
Follow along at Journey of the Intern Therapist