When I graduated from college last spring, I was excited and passionate about my future. I was sure that everything had fallen into place, and that I would be pursuing my true calling in the field of counseling. Now that a year has almost passed, I find myself questioning everything. Although I’m doing well academically, I’ve never felt so inadequate and miserable in my life. I’m struggling at my job and I’ve realized I’m not as well spoken or charismatic like some of my peers. Some may call it the growing pains of adulthood and even imposter syndrome, but I have to wonder if it’s simply a sign that I’m doing the wrong thing with my life. I have been forced to ask myself WHY AM I HERE AND WHY AM I PUTTING MYSELF THROUGH THIS?
I’ve had less than a stellar experience in my program (for a variety of reasons I care not to discuss at this time) and I have also become completely disenchanted with the work I envisioned myself doing for the rest of my life. Don’t get me wrong, I have experienced some wonderful moments where I’ve seen growth and small breakthroughs with my clients. But then, there are those dark and heavy days when I can’t shake off the pain and distress my clients seemingly unleash within our sessions. On those particular days, I’m left feeling lost and completely useless.
The rational and somewhat sane part of me is telling me to stick with it. I have full funding, and it would be silly of me not to take advantage of the opportunity. However, the mental, physically, and emotional toll this experience has taken is becoming unbearable. All I constantly hear from my friends and family is to pray. But to be honest, praying is the last thing I want to do at times. I often have to stop myself from getting angry with God and questioning his plans for me. Sometimes I even wonder if this is all some type of cruel joke. Why would God take me thousands of miles away from the comfort of my home just to see me miserable? Why did he choose me to help carry the burden, shame and innermost thoughts and feelings of those in need, when I can barely help myself?
I came across the following verse a while back:
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
– Jeremiah 29:11
In the moments as I was reading this, I felt like it was a direct message from God telling me to persevere. However, the comfort I found in these words were fleeting. It’s like a constant tug of war in mind. On some days I feel optimistic that I can see it through until the end. But then, there are many moments when I just want to pack up all of my things and never look back. I’m uncertain of what my future holds, but as for now, I plan on taking things day by day and staying true to myself.