Most of my life I was told I could be a doctor. Eventually, I began to believe it. I was smart, so I was told, focused, and determined. I enjoyed going to school (I had perfect attendance most of my life). I enjoyed learning and doing my homework. Blend all of this with a competitive personality (I liked getting A’s) and you have a great combination of the skills needed to succeed in medical school right? Well, I thought so and I was on my way.
I enrolled in the Health Academy program in my high school. I interned at a local hospital my senior year of high school (Radiology Technician Assistant). And I went to college with the intention of majoring in chemistry in preparation for medical school. Right! So, how did I get here?
During the summer prior to my freshman year of college, I took a pre-freshman chemistry course. It seemed pretty easy, so I thought I would fly through the chemistry program with ease, so I registered for a higher level chemistry course my first semester. I studied so much that semester, only to receive a C, and a C- in lab. In addition I earned a C in Calculus I. Something had to give. I tried the second semester with the next level chemistry course, same results. I put forth so much effort and did all the right things, only to earn C’s.
Medical school was getting further away. Time was winding down and I had to declare my major. I decided being a doctor would require too much effort (organic chemistry and whatever came next was waiting for me). I thought about what I wanted to do. I was still working that out when I decided to major in the subject that comes easiest for me. You said it: Math!
So I declared my major and figured out the rest along the way. So, how did I get here? I followed the path that worked best for me. And yes, I did work to earn my A’s in math. I joined study groups, I went to office hours, and I even went to the tutoring center. I was determined, but I also enjoyed learning math concepts! My joy of math made it feel easy!
Today, I am helping students of all ages learn math (and sometimes they actually enjoy it). This was my natural path. Yes, I could have been a doctor! But being a math instructor/teacher/tutor is what I was meant to be.
I wrote all of this to say “follow your path.” It will come to you. It’s okay if it seems too easy, it’s okay if it’s a path that’s different than what you thought, and it’s okay if others wonder what changed along the way. As long as you follow your path, then you will get there too!