I wanted to share my Marriage and Family Therapy Master's Degree Admission Essay with you all in this edition of Authentic Words ~ the blog. You all know telling my truth is my jam and I feel strongly about sharing this journey with you all.
I am 43 and going back to school. It feels terrifying and exhilarating at the same time. I trust that everything is going to line up just perfectly with no forcing of solutions on my end. Abundance will flow to me and faith will wash away all limiting and lack beliefs around, "how will I pay for all this??"
So, here's the letter! After you read it, drop me a line and let me know if you would accept me into your school.
I am a firm believer in divine intervention and trusting my intuition. A few weeks ago I had a conversation with a friend of mine where she said to me, “You are a really great listener and have a ton of ‘life cred.’ Have you considered going back to school to be a therapist?”
I have been soul searching for a while now about what to do next in my career. I have worked at Apple in many positions for the last nine years, but have had a series of ankle and feet surgeries that left me disabled and unable to stand for long periods of time. However, going back to school was not on my radar. Honestly, I thought I was too old.
But just two weeks ago, the day after my friend had asked me the magic question about becoming a Marriage and Family Therapist, my own therapist delivered some disappointing news. She was going to be moving away. This brought up some serious unresolved emotions that triggered me in a tremendous way. I sat in my car and cried — I cried hard. The tears coming out of my eyes were at first for the loss of someone who has impacted and been there for me through some pretty tough times. Then the tears turned into much more. I felt like it was the final straw. I felt the Universe did not have my back. How could this happen? Why would this happen?
I have learned from Caroline Myss that, “Giving up the need to know why something has happened to you will definitely count among the most rigorous personal challenges of your life.”
After crying it out for a few hours I let go of the need to question, "Why?" and made a round of outreach calls to my Alanon sponsor and fellow members of the program. Then, it came to me, "God never takes anything away without replacing it with something better." Obviously, I felt pretty strongly about my therapist being the best out there, but the whole situation had me wondering, “Could I impact people and help them grow the way my therapist did for me?” That night, I searched online for Marriage and Family Therapist programs. Alliant University came up first on the list. The next week I saw my therapist for the last time and I told her my big news! Tears formed in her eyes, the same blue eyes that compelled me to choose her as my therapist. She was overjoyed! She shared with me that she went back for her Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy when she was 43 years old at Alliant University, the same age I am now. She assured me I was not too old. I saw this as a sign and the something better that God was giving me. I spent the next week researching schools and decided to trust my gut and the advice of my therapist that Alliant University had an outstanding program.
There are many things that happened in my childhood and adulthood that brought me to therapy. I grew up in the disease of alcoholism which gratefully brought me to the Alanon program. I have been practicing the principles and working the steps for 13 years. Alanon has saved me in many ways and encouraged me to go deeper in my healing journey. I grew up without a father in my home, which caused me to have self-esteem issues. I am also a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. I hadn’t started talking about the trauma until the beginning of 2016 with my therapist. Then, at Gabrielle Bernstein’s, a Super Soul Sessions Speaker, Spirit Junkie Masterclass in 2016, I spoke up about my childhood trauma in a large group for the first time. There were 300 people in the room. My hand shot up as the tears ran down my face and I shared with vulnerability how I needed to get angry about my childhood. People acknowledged and validated my bravery and even Gabrielle asked me to write about my childhood trauma. After telling her I didn't feel I was qualified to write about it, as it was new for me, she promised me that I could still help people heal, even though I was still healing myself. She urged me not to leave anything out. I went on to publish my book, Came to Believe: A Journey of Trust, Faith and Perseverance, in October 2017, which was an Amazon Top Seller in 2018. This highly personal work included all the parts of my childhood that make me the brave, resilient, and beautiful woman I am today.
Life recently threw me another curve ball. In January 2019, my stepdad passed. While experiencing this grief, I made the decision to have my elderly mother come live with me. My mother was the one who brought me to Alanon and our connection, which I wrote a lot about in my memoir, has evolved into a wonderful and compassionate relationship over the years. Even knowing this, I felt it was unfair to have my life uprooted and to have to make such a huge sacrifice at my age. I was currently working on boundaries and detachment towards my mom with my therapist before she let me know about her move. My mom is dealing with immense grief and she also has some serious elderly issues. Living with a parent who has these problems has also been very insightful to my decision to go back to school to become a therapist.
I graduated from Gabrielle Bernstein’s Spirit Junkie Master Class Level One and Two in 2016 where we were trained to provide Emotional Freedom Technique, teach meditation, and run a spiritually-based business. I also graduated from Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training Level One from the Kundalini Research Institute at The Awareness Center in October 2017. I have completed two of the five Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training Level 2 Courses (Conscious Communication and Mind and Meditation) and will be taking my third, Authentic Relationships in October 2019. I teach Kundalini Yoga for Athleta, Gap Inc., and at my home Kundalini Yoga Studio, The Awareness Center.
One of the things I am most proud of is publishing my spiritual memoir, Came to Believe: A Journey of Trust, Faith and Perseverance. This book took heart, soul, vulnerability, commitment and all of my angels giving me those nudges that I was on the right path. The feedback I have received has been incredible. I know my book has helped many people because of my ability to share authentically about my childhood and the tools I used to persevere. I am happy to send you a copy for your consideration into the Marriage and Family Therapy program.
I am hoping by now you can understand why I am meant to be a Marriage and Family Therapist. With all that I have experienced in my life, the healing work I have done through many conventional and new age modalities, my work in Alanon and being a Kundalini Yoga Teacher, I know I will make a wonderful therapist. When I talk about going to Alliant University as a graduate student of the Marriage and Family Therapy program, my eyes light up and you can hear the joy and excitement in my voice. I cannot wait to learn all that I can to be just as awesome as my therapist. Therapists impact people. They move people to great lengths in their recovery. My hope as a therapist is to help children growing up in trauma to overcome the difficulties that come with their upbringing. My hope is to impact others that felt it was too late for them to heal. I have a lot of hopes, but with the help of my angels and intuition, I know I will be guided every step of the way.
I will leave you with one of my favorite quotes from the metaphysical textbook, A Course in Miracles.
“If you knew who walks beside you on the way that you have chosen, fear would be impossible.”