Directionless

Two weeks ago I met up with my wonderful friend. I have written about her before. We met online when we first stopped drinking – she is 19 days ahead of me. We met in real life for the first time just before Christmas 2016. I feel we have a very strong bond. I can say anything to her and she will not be shocked. She supports me no matter want. She gets it. Even though we live quite far apart and have only met three times, as soon as I see her, everything just falls back into place and it is as if we have never been apart. Last time we spent seven hours together. The time flew by. We didn’t stop talking. I love her SO much.

My friend asked me whether I had a plan for the future, especially my work and I said I didn’t, not really. She has a tangible plan – a direction she wants her career to go in. A clear path to follow. I think her plan sounds perfect. It will be interesting and fulfilling and worthwhile. I meanwhile, do not have a clear vision. I’m not really sure where I’m going but I know I don’t want to continue is this job for the next 25 years or more. I suppose that’s a start.

If I could go back, I wouldn’t do it this way. I fulfilled my ambition of a legal career but it wasn’t what I expected and the crippling post natal depression I experienced after the birth of my first daughter, which stripped me of every ounce of self worth was the nail in the coffin of my professional career. Since then I have had a number of roles in the field of regulation and investigation which are ok and which I am good at but I haven’t made it onto the next rung of the ladder and I am not confident I ever will. Even if I do make it to the lofty heights of team leader that’s not really what I want to do. The only motivation would be the hefty increase in pay.

So what to do ?

For a long time I have felt drawn to a career in counselling. I have been in and out of therapy for a long time and I have found it immensely helpful.  Until now though, I have not felt strong enough to pursue this vision. I think I have that strength now. I am in a good place – the best place I have been in for a very long time. But I still have that nagging voice in my head saying “you’d be wasting your time”, “it will take too long and cost too much”, “you’re too old” (I’m 46), “stop being selfish and think yourself lucky”……and on and on and on.

If I was single and childless, I would just go for it but if I do this I will be asking Mr So and my girls to make sacrifices too. A career change would take a long time and I might fall flat on my face. Is it a case of “better the devil you know?” Should I just put up and shut up?

So I am wavering. I have put out some feelers about an introductory counselling course which I could attend at the local college one evening a week. I have asked my old therapist to check it out and he has said it is a good course, properly accredited and moderated. I have called them and there are places – I could go to an admissions evening on 23 August and sign up…It would be a way to dip my toe in the water and see if I like it.  Thing is, I’m virtually I would like it and want to take it further and what would I do then ? The wavering continues.

3 thoughts on “Directionless

  1. Hi Tori

    I’ve done the introductory, level 1 and level 2 counselling course, money time and lack of confidence stopped me going further. On my level 2 there was a lady also doing the course, she went onto do a degree course in Manchester and then worked on counselling with local councils and private practise……..she was 60! So go for it, you have experience from both sides and I can hear the empathy you need to be a counsellor. By doing this you show your daughters how anyone can make changes in their life and whether you succeed (but sure you will), or not what better role model can there be. Wishing you all the best and when you do look forward to following your journey. Hugs x

  2. Hi Tori!
    I am sure it’s a hard decision.
    I remember I kept putting off getting my master’s in education, thinking it would be too hard, etc.
    Finally when I was in my early 40’s, I decided to do it. It was hard, but so worth it, and I never regretted it!
    xo
    Wendy

  3. I may be biased, but I say… GO FOR IT! I am currently 1.5 years into a 3-year program to become a mental health counselor and it has been an eye-opening experience for me. I am so excited to start this vocation. Granted, I’m a bit younger than you and unmarried, so I understand that having the address stress of family responsibilities can be daunting… but if your S.O. is supportive and you feel the pull, I would really, really encourage you to follow the path that calls.

    If you ever have any questions about what my experience has been like, I’d be more than happy to share 🙂

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