Saturday, April 28, 2012

With a Smile

School has finished with and after having ten days off, I have one more exam to right on Monday morning.  Although I have pretty much finished off my second year of University, I am finding myself debating what to do with my University degree more now than ever.  Under my belt already I have an insulin pump...err.. I mean a liberal studied diploma and with that I have advanced a year in University.  However, my original choice was to do a major in Psychology, but realized the math portion was scary me deeply, so I decided to declare an English major instead.

I have been told more than once that an English major was not going to land me a job which is an issue if it proves to be true.  I have considered being a teacher for many, many, many years, but the way elementary school teachers are being hired, or should I say, not hired... I am better off thinking ahead of the game and finding something else that interests me for now. The next thought was to work at Fanshawe College after I was finished, after all I am an alumni and know the professors very well, this option is still out there and knowing that they will most likely want me to get my masters, I have to be willing to commit myself to more schooling than I am already tied down to.

It wasn't until about a few weeks ago when I attended the Family Day for diabetics and their families at the Lamplighter Inn in London did I consider another job possibility.  I was asked to help with the 45 minute teen talk and of course I looked at it as a great opportunity to get to know the London diabetes community as well as learn some new life lessons and it was both those things wrapped up in 45 minutes. But, it also started making me think about possibly getting involved in social work.

I don't know too much about social work and I suppose that is why they make you attend University for it, but either way, just talking with the teens made me feel great, the 45 minutes flew by as I worked along side other social workers and I just wanted the day to go on for hours.   It was such an uplifting and powerful experience and with that I went home wondering what it would be like to work as a social worker in the diabetes education centres.

After doing some googling I realized the program was offered at Kings College which is where I am enrolled.  I made an appointment with the head there and met with her talking about what I was looking to do and how I could get there.   I was very clear that I would only want to do social work within the diabetes community and as the words came out of my mouth I did realize I sounded shallow minded, wiling only to help those who were like me, but that wasn't the case.

I know that I could be a benefit to those struggling with diabetes and being a social workers, being that support branch and extra knowledge that non-diabetic social workers don't have - would only be an added advantage. It wasn't that I thought other possible jobs for social workers was unfit for me,  I just knew that I would be best in a diabetic education environment, and that is the only reason I would consider switching my program from English to Social Work.

She told me that I could do both while I was at Kings, which is nice and I could start working towards the social work program during the summer, which is still up for consideration. I am not truly sure where my life is taking me and I think that is the fun of it all. I have made a unique life for myself and like Vince tells me, "you're a different kind of  girl, and by different, I mean that in the best way possible."

I know that whatever I do in life will be worth my time. A steady job at McDonald's is perfect for some, but nothing that I would be interested in doing.  I love the motivational speaking I do, and the community involvement I get to participate in, and even though a lot of what I do is unpaid and takes a lot of time, I truly enjoying being out there and doing all that I can.  Seeing others smile from what I have created is a great feeling.

So, although I am expecting that my life choices will change along the way, after all I am only twenty-one, I know one thing for sure is that everything I do will be with my full heart and I will do it with a smile.



  1. I think you would be GREAT at that job, Kayla! go for it, girl! <3

  2. YourI think that's a wonderful goal, to be in a position to work with - and to help - those who share something you're absolutely passionate about! In a way, I wish I went into that kind of field rather than the technical field I'm in. I used to be very introverted and thought I'd prefer working with machines rather than people... I kinda regret that now. Watching a green LED light up isn't nearly as fulfullung as watching someone's face light up.

    That said -- and I feel a bit hesitant and unqualified to advise you on what to do with the rest of your life -- there are things to consider: (1) specializing in diabetes is fine, but limiting yourself completely might not be. Dealing with diabetes and d-related problems all-day every-day might be a bit close to home and make take an emotional toll on you personally. Then again, maybe not; I don't know your personality well enough to say. (2) this is meant to be a career. Are you OK with making money off of this? That's something that I've often found conflicting when I've thought of a career in the D-field... profiting at the expense of those who need help. (3) what if there's a cure? sure, we'd be the happiest people alive, but don't let it put you out of a job. It goes back to my "don't limit yourself" advice.

    I don't want to discourage you in any way, we PWDs certainly need people to help us out and lift our spirits sometimes. Your cheerful optimism that I see through the net tells me that you'd be really good at it. Just make sure you consider everything.