Ever wish you could go back in time? Give your younger, college self the advice and insight that you didn’t have in that moment? Well, until someone invents a truly functional time machine (too bad “Back to the Future” was just a movie), all we can do is keep moving forward and learning from our prior experiences. However, the successful clinicians of today can help others succeed by telling their stories and admitting what they wish they knew in the past. Our first “Letter to My Younger Self” is written by one of our clinical directors, Melissa White, M.A., CCC-SLP. Melissa shares her letter to her “CF Self”, which you can tell was straight from the heart. Get ready to learn from our team members, as this is only the first of our letter series!
“Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations” – Author unknown
“Dear CF Melissa,
You are about to start one of the most amazing journeys of your life. At times it is going to feel like you accidently walked onto the “extreme” adventure path, but oddly sometimes doing things the hard way makes things feel easier later.
You don’t know it now, because you just finished graduate school and well let’s face it, you are still relatively dazed, but you will learn how to “read the signs”. More importantly, you will tune in and value the people holding those signs. These people have become your “bilingual madrinas, padrinos, comadres and compadres”.
In 2016 you can sit down and reflect on how lucky you were to be at places where these people were, but understand that not only were these individuals open to mentoring, you were open to being mentored. You will try to help those you mentor in the future understand this and hope you will succeed. You’ll learn from your mentors that there is no such thing as “smooth sailing”, but you’ll have all the skills to move through the rough patches. You will watch them deftly advocate for culturally and linguistically diverse students and families they work with, and you will understand the responsibility of doing the same. They will teach you that actively listening versus passionately reacting will move issues forward instead of dragging them back. You won’t always be successful at this, but there will always be a lesson learned to grow from and share.
Later, you will tell your CFs to “put down their pencil and be in the moment” because you don’t want them to miss all those little seconds where their students were silently communicating a message to them. You will know that it is those moments that have made this profession so special to you.
Off to explore more destinations,
Do you wish to explore more destinations like Melissa? Take the first step by exploring our newest school-based opportunities.