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Updated: Sep 6

Nowadays, especially with the dominance of social media, people only see the results of what we’ve accomplished. They don’t get to witness all the efforts and hard work we put in as well as the number of rejections we had to undergo before getting there. They have no idea how long we had to WAIT -yes that word needed to be in capital letters- and be patient for that day when we can finally let our joy explode and say ‘YES, I did it!’

Sometimes it takes 2 to 3 months, sometimes 6; or even more than a year.

We all remember the expression ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’ right?

I decided to name this article ‘tell me your journey’ because I wanted people to share their experience…. Not just the good ones, but also the bad ones. The ones that get you frustrated or crying. We are only humans. We are all on a journey and it’s hard for all of us out there. Some of us will go straight, others will make a few turns, while others will stop and look at the map before deciding where to go. We all have a different story.

Getting into school is not easy. There is a lot of competition (not to forget that school is more and more expensive these days). Then, looking for a job is even harder. It’s nerve wracking. You know the precise moment when you start looking but you never know ahead when it ends. You can only hope that someone will give your chance soon to prove that you are good enough….

When I didn’t get into Grad School in the US, there was an opening for applying to universities in London. When, I was accepted, there was no question that I wanted to move there. When I finished my first master’s degree, I had to move to Paris to do another one. It really wasn’t my choice because I wanted to stay in London. Meanwhile, I started applying for jobs in my major. When I completed my second Master’s degree, I decided that I had enough educational baggage. ‘That was it for school, for now’. I wanted to focus on my professional future. I actually made the choice to move back home. When you make a big move like that, you can only hope for the best in the long term because you know you will have to wait and it is going to be hard. On the other hand, it gave me the opportunity to see a few friends I hadn’t seen in a while. Some of them made the same decision as I did. From home, I was working on my fallback plan (or PLAN B) and kept applying for jobs. After a long period of waiting, my opportunity to move to Canada finally came through.

It’s now been 4 years since I’ve moved to Canada. I have to say that life has a funny twist. We have an expression in French called “la force de la parole” (if I translate and explain that in English it means that the words you pronounce at an early stage are already shaping and predicting the outcome). Indeed, I’ve always said that I wanted to teach, and I am teaching French here in Toronto. I’ve always said that I wanted to own a website and I made it came true. Of course, there is a bigger project related to my field of studies coming along, but I will share it with you guys when the time is right.

I may not be where I want yet but at least I am not where I was yesterday.

What about you guys? What shaped you? How was it (or is it) for you?

Wishing each one of you nothing but success and good things happening in your life!!

Marie-Madeleine Mbong

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