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This really brought me back to my field placement days, five years ago. There was so much learning and so much crying. It changed who I was in every sense of the word and over the year I went from feeling completely incompetent to in the end feeling like a true clinician and therapist. Hang in there, it will be over before you blink and you will be out in the world with a degree and a license, changing lives in big and small ways, every day.

Amy, thank you. That really really helps when I hear someone whose been there say they made it and it was worth it. Thank you!!

I feel like I'm in a similar situation and it is nice to hear that someone else deals with conflicting ideas too. Thank you!

When I was in grad school, I used to tell myself, "You ae living like this FOR NOW, so you never have to live like this EVER AGAIN!". And it's true, when I was a student, I was broke, exhausted, and felt little balance in my life. It was all about classes, papers, and studying. Now I have a job that I love (I'm an SLP working with children age birth to three) and I have finally found that balance! (knit night with my ladies helps, too)

Hang in there! This is temporary, and you are growing SO much from this experience.

Erin, what a good motto- I'm totally stealing it!

By the way, the best advice I was given about getting through my MSW program was to NOT try to do all the reading. Read the chapters and articles that you need to get through the midterms and finals and to participate in class to a reasonable degree and hold off on the rest. You can always save them and read them at your leisure AFTER you graduate.

I can completely relate to this. I agree with the comment above - don't do all the reading, just skim. Read the beginning and end of paragraphs. Keep your family and scriptures as your priorities and let other things go. I'm with the thought of "it's just for a season." When I was working on my MSW, I thought I could do it all. I had a realization that I was actually being prideful. Post here, in the event you have time to read it: http://ashleyschultz.blogspot.com/2011/03/little-thing-called-pride.html

This was beautiful. Loved the last two paragraphs especially. I'm always so excited when I check your blog, and find it updated. A happy little moment in the day. Thanks for sharing and good luck with your full plate.

Ashley, I loved your post do much! I'm not competitive at all in life- but in school my competitive need for praise and teacher pleasing gets out of control. I seriously need to cut my efforts by 70%!

Desiree- thank you thank you.

I think that you've got it all figured out. Life seems to be about being okay with not being perfect, with learning to sacrifice for what's more important. I am amazed at all you are doing right now, and glad you get a chance to sleep in!

Seriously, this was beautiful. Especially that last line.

beautiful writing. I love that you find meaning in your challenges-even as they are taking place. its inspiring to me! Thanks.

So beautifully said! I'm cheering you on. :)

thank you, and good luck.

Kelly, I found your blog after Stephanie's accident and have read it from time to time. I also struggled with infertility, like to quilt, and felt like we had some things in common as a result. Then my friend gave me a journal from your etsy shop 2 years ago... Well, I've been an LCSW for 10 years. I worked on getting my license while pursuing fertility treatments. I can say that during graduate school I thought I was going to go crazy. Not only because of the sheer volume of reading and writing, but because the subject matter makes one evaluate every demon, unaddressed issue (every addressed issue, who am I kidding?) some MSW programs require students to go to counseling while they are students, not only to make sure they aren't carrying their baggage into practice, but to have the experience of being a client before they are the therapist. I had panic attacks for the first time in my life, I saw myself on every page of the DSM, when I talked to my supervisor at my internship she said when she was a student she and her small group of friends all had the similar experience of feeling like they were loosing their (expletive) minds...But, I wouldn't have done anything different. Having an MSW means you can do SO MANY different things. We have moved around a lot for my husband's schooling and training, so I have been a therapist, a medical social worker, a school social worker, worked for LDSFS, and right now I take call in the ER doing psychiatric evaluations and assist with traumas when they come in, as well as see clients outpatient in an agency where I am basically private practice, I use their facility, so we fee split because they do all my billing, and scheduling, etc. At any rate, I know what you are going through,I know how frustrating it is and how hard it is to feel like you have to hold the sadness of the whole wide world in your arms and then come home and be a wife, and now that I am a mother, be a mother and not let that seep through. You can do it, it will get easier, you will begin to compartmentalize more. If you want to email me, feel free, I've been where you are, in a lot of ways.

I can't tell you how timely and inspired this comment was. How did you know exactly what I was going through and feeling?!!! Thank you so much for taking the time to say all this. I am all over the DSM too, I have panic attacks. I had a HUGE breakdown when I realized how codependent I am! I thought I knew all this stuff and had dealt with my junk. I'm realizing this journey is as much for me as helping others. Thank you for confirming that. I can use my experiences for empathy, and my education for appropriate counseling. It is so stretching and so hard to face all the stuff we like to bury, and actually do "work". But when I know better I do better. So this is a gift (in a very ugly package)!

Thank you kelly. the imagery of being in the depth of your mind watching the waves crash above... I can see it. such a beautiful way of wording it. My crashing waves lately have been my role as stay at home mother and my desire for personal growth and stimulation. I have just felt very small lately and I want something to work on or toward....I have little things here and there, but nothing that excites my soul.... still trying to figure out this awkward time in my life.

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