Statistically Speaking

I have a big exam on Thursday. Probably the biggest one of my life. It is a subject over my last 7 years of part-time studying that I have come to love to hate.  It’s my nemesis that comes back to haunt me each and every passing year and it’s always compulsory! Research Methodology ~ Statistics. I don’t get it, I really don’t get it. It’s like learning hieroglyphics.  I could fully understand doing this if I were studying to become a Research Psychologist, but I’m not and like those days back in school studying something that was seemingly completely pointless, here I am again studying something seemingly completely pointless. However, I do know this is preparing me for any future degrees should I be mad enough to continue after this so I should just shut up and suck it up! But this is my release so allow me five minutes to moan!

Over the years I have now written exams on the statistical side ~ the calculations, figures and funny looking letters and I have written exams on the theory. I do so much better on the theory. I do even better on subjects I enjoy! Thursday’s exam, although it doesn’t include calculations you have to understand how they have done calculations and what scientific method they have used to calculate it. I hold little hope for this part and my hope lies in the two research reports (I’m hoping) they give us to evaluate.

I am putting in the hours and doing my best to understand how this all works together. No matter how many years I have studied this stuff; it just does not get any easier!  The other problem I seem to be having at the moment is everyone around me is falling like dominoes.  There is one hectic virus going around and it’s literally taking the wind out of people’s sails. High fevers, coughing, no energy-lights-out-in-bed kinda sick.  Literally, my whole family was taken down by this virus, one by one they were picked off. I refuse to get close to any of them and the brief moments I do see them I mask my mouth and nose and stay as far back as I can. Even my boss fell ill last week and didn’t take too kindly when I covered up every time he walked close by! With just hours to go before my exam, as much as I would love to skip this one, I just cannot afford to fall ill now and miss writing this exam and throw a whole year away. Needless to say, in light of all of this, I am fast developing OCD in hand washing!

To make matters even worse it’s an open book exam. Now, not only do I have to figure out how this all works, I have to figure out what I’m taking into the exam. There is no time to look stuff up so what’s the point really. Most students don’t finish this exam, let alone pass. Okay, that’s probably not true but I’m just saying that to make myself feel better! This really does look pretty dismal.

I had moments over the past weekend where I just wanted to give up. I’m tired of studying. I don’t want this responsibility anymore. I put my pen down. I closed my books. I closed my eyes, feeling at breaking point, I put my head down on my desk.  It would be so easy to give up. Then I remembered why I am doing this. It’s my dream. It’s been my dream for a long, long time. One that I never gave up believing in. And finally one day I asked myself what on earth I was waiting for? I took the plunge. My degree is now complete, now to get through Honours.  As I lay there with my head on my desk I recalled my graduation earlier this year, all the feelings rushed up to the surface.  That was one of the best moments of my life. Pure joy and such a feeling of achievement.

I am that much closer now to realising my ultimate dream. I know I can’t give up. I must push through the hard times. I know it’s moments like these that make the victory at the end worth it all.

Statistics.

It really is like learning hieroglyphics.

It is pure torture.

Statistics ruins lives.

Three hours of absolute open book hell coming up tomorrow.

I might just have to play eeny, meeny, miny, moe with some of the answers.

But then again they do negative marking so many that’s not the best idea.

Moan over.

Feel better.

Well, not really.

But, moving on.

Time to be positive.

I’m going to make this.

Well, at least I’m going to give it my best shot.

Here goes.

Fingers crossed.

Wish me luck!

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Tonight, One of my Dreams Come True!

Tonight, at the age of 37, after five long, sometimes blood-curlingly, agonising and gruelling years of studying a 3 year BA degree in Psychology part-time, I will graduate!

I always knew what I wanted to do from a young age, it was always just sense of knowing.  I never got to study what I wanted to after school, yet that desire to follow what I knew I was passionate about never left me. If anything, the calling just grew stronger. I recall vividly the day I “woke up” and finally asked myself what on earth I was waiting for?  So at the age of 31 I started looking to various university about my options to study part-time as I worked full-time and in order to support my studies I had to continue working. Unfortunately, I had just missed the closing dates and had to wait the year out before I could register to begin my studies. It was not an easy path by any means, having left school 14 years before it had been a long time since I had last opened a book to study academic material. My first year marks were all passes but my marks were just ok. After such a long time of not studying I called it getting back into the groove. But I wanted more than ok. So in the next four years that followed, with lots of hard work, lots of no’s to amazing invites out, missing many social events, friends birthdays and studying while all I wanted to do was play, I began to excel in my studies and my marks showed it. Distinction after distinction rolled in and by the time my degree came to an end I had a nice mound of distinctions under my name. I was no straight-A student at school but all my hard work had paid off and at the end of last year I completed my degree and tonight I will officially graduate.

It has always been my dream to study Clinical Psychology and my ultimate dream is to work with children. However, I am not set only on one avenue and the field I have chosen to study in will open many opportunities on the path I am on. I am now currently doing my Honours in Psych, which once completed, will allow me to complete an internship and then once I pass my board exam I can register as a counsellor while I take a few years out to do other things before taking the final step in my ultimate dream and doing my Masters in Clinical Psychology.

You are never too old to realise your dreams, no matter what they are. All it takes is hard work and a dash of dedication and a good dollop of commitment and in the end if it is something that you want, you will make it happen. You do what you have to do and in the end you overcome any obstacle that may land in your way.  The pain, the tears, the frustration, the elation ~ it was all so worth it. The only thing that limits us is the mind. Believe in yourself and all things really do become possible.

Tonight, as I walk across that stage and the degree gets conferred on me, I will officially tick # 72 off my bucket list. 

This is a proud moment for me. I’ve done it.

Dreams really do come true!

And as cheesy as it is, Irene Cara sang it best back in the 80’s ~ “First when there’s nothing but a slow glowing dream….. “ “Take your passion and make it happen”

First when there’s nothing
but a slow glowing dream
that your fear seems to hide
deep inside your mind.
All alone I have cried
silent tears full of pride
in a world made of steel,
made of stone.
Well, I hear the music,
close my eyes, feel the rhythm,
wrap around, take a hold
of my heart.
What a feeling.
Bein’s believin’.
I can have it all, now I’m dancing for my life.
Take your passion
and make it happen.
Pictures come alive, you can dance right through your life.
Now I hear the music,
close my eyes, I am rhythm.
In a flash it takes hold
of my heart.
What a feeling.

And just one more thing before I go, a huge big thank you to my latest donors ~ Justin, Kathy and Ivor Hinrichsen (aka mom and dad) and Wendy Seward.  Thank you so much for helping someone with CF breathe a little easier and for helping us take another step closer to finding a cure!

My heartfelt gratitude to you all!

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