When life gives you lemons, make horchata instead.

Part 2. Remember that university job I quit? Yeah, that one. It brought me to my current amazing job. After being unemployed, I was hired at a non-profit in a county outside of Los Angeles. I was so happy to be hired and finally leave my previous job in the dust. All I needed was a giant eraser for the awful memories and the hours spent driving on the Sepulveda pass. I bounced back fairly quickly and decided to never speak of what I had been through ever again (still working through that by the way). It’s been six months since I was hired at my new job and I’ve never felt more confident than I do now. It may be a combination of experience and fit but it just feels right. For the first time in my life I’m not thinking about the next job or my next career move. 

I’m back in the school counseling field and this year marked my seventh year working in public high schools. The change was exciting, yet stressful and it took some time to adjust to working with a new student population. My first few years as a school counselor were spent in South Los Angeles. Most of my experience has been serving first generation, Latinx students, and improving college access. I’m now working with a population of students that is new to me. I work for an independent study school. Students typically enroll because maybe a traditional school setting has not worked for them and a self-paced, smaller class size works best. Many students are also in foster care, experiencing homelessness, or have been in a juvenile court school. I’ve learned so much in the last six months. I’ve been out of my comfort zone, I’ve learned about special populations of students, and have had a tremendous amount of supervision and support from colleagues. 

The students that I’ve been lucky to work with have also taught me a lot. As human beings, we are incredibly resilient. Our abilities to adapt and bounce back are extraordinary. Some students have experienced so much adversity but continue on in hopes of mapping out a better future. If I would have searched for this particular position, I would not have found it. I had heard of the phrase, a blessing in disguise, but little did I know that the embarrassment (and what felt like a total fail) I experienced back in September of 2019 would lead to something so much better. For a while, I had been searching for a change and I think this was the change I needed. This is where I’m meant to be.

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