It is currently 1 am and I am working a night shift. While trying to stay away, I Googled “tumblr pics” to see if I could find some cool things to share on the blog. As I was scrolling through the images, the picture I have inserted caught my eye. The quote triggered emotion in me, which is how I knew I had to share.
About a week ago, I received an email from my local RCMP recruitment office saying that I have been selected to come in for testing for a Telecommunications job (I had applied for this about 6 months ago). At first, I was in shock. I really had no idea what to think. An opportunity like this seems to be a dime a dozen, and I was ecstatic that I was given the opportunity.
Of course, once the hype was over, I was left in a panic. I know, I know; why would a proficiency testing for a potential new career (that would almost double my salary btw) scare the day lights out of me? I was no stranger to the local RCMP. Without too much detail, back in 2011 I was a victim to sexual assault. Long story short (that I will blog about, at some point), the years following this event have been internally traumatic.
Let me give you a little break down. Since the trauma occurred, many of my decisions were based on how anxious the situation would make me. For example, when I was deciding on where I wanted to go for college/what courses I wanted to take, the first thing I thought of was how likely it would be for me to run into That Individual (this is how I will refer to the abuser). I also though about what careers would make me more accessible; what environment I would work in, what field I would work in, what kind of people would I most likely run into, etc. My dream had ALWAYS been to be a Marine Biologist. I have such a passion for marine life and for the beauty of the sea and its conservation. Due to the fact that I did so poorly in school (seriously kids, listen to your parents and DON’T be a heathen), I was basically forced into a new career path. After much thought, I soon decided that Medical Administration would be a good fit for me, and the guidance counselors at my high school agreed. I had all the pamphlets and information on the job that I needed. All that was left was for me to make a choice when I was ready.
Fast forward to 2013 when I was finally ready to take the next step in life; apply for college. Going back to the above mentioned emotions I was going through, I somehow came to the conclusion that beauty school (Medical Aesthetics) would be the best fit for me. Keep in mind, this was NOT a passion of mine. This was a safety net. I had concluded that I would be in a school full of woman (therefore That Individual would not be there), most of the clients that come into the school for services would be female, and my clientele would likely be female as well. To make matters worse, at this time in my life, I was dating this woman who was incredibly controlling, and mentally abusive (again, another post, another day). We both ended up enrolling in this school and for the next year it was hell. Towards the end of my term, we had broken up, so not only was I studying to be something I did not want to be, I was forced to see my ex day in and day out and have to put on a pretty face because “Look’s are Everything” in the beauty industry, according to our dean anyway.
Fast forward to now, I am currently a Telecommunications Clerk at my local hospital. I am so incredibly fortunate to wake up everyday and go to work at a job I adore. The best thing, I managed to persevere through to pain and anxiety of working in such a public place. Most of the time I am down in the main lobby manning the front desk, so I am very much in the public. With a lot – A LOT – of therapy and counselling I have managed to work hard to achieve something I love. And now that I am given another opportunity to try something new, that anxiety and that memory pain came flooding back.
Moral of this story, no matter your struggle, it is valid and it is REAL. Believe me when I say, just as the picture above says, a small act of courage will get you so very far. I have never believe myself to be brave or courageous, I simply think of myself as a woman – a human – who has been dealt some pretty shitty cards. I also see myself as a woman who has worked her ass off to keep herself sane enough to get by, day after day. If I can do it, BELIEVE ME, so can you. It won’t be easy; it will be the hardest up hill battle. But I promise you, the view from the top is SO worth it.
I’m still not where I want to be, but I know I’m headed there.
And if you’re still reading this, I like you, I appreciate you.