Asia Reviewer Maniac

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My Life in Reflection at 20 going on 21

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This is going to be a post that is quite different from what I have done in the past. As I use this blog predominantly as a place for expressing my interests that I love sharing with others, I never venture into anything too personal as I sometimes feel that is almost…unnecessary? As in, this blog was created out of the love I had for kpop and dramas, and I had thought that it should stay that way.

But for today, I wanted to kind of share some personal issues I have with myself, and I hope that this post may be of some assistance to others, whatever your struggles or problems may be.

Tomorrow I officially turn 21, and as I was chatting to two of my best friends (who are both older than I am) I suddenly realised that indeed this age isn’t simply another new milestone in my life, but that it also entails a new time to take upon major issues and responsibilities that I perhaps have never thought too much about before. Hearing one of my friends worry about job prospects and the struggle of finding a job related to what she has studied, scares and worries me immensely.

Coming to my final year of university, these fears begin to grow larger and larger to the point where everyday conversations end with a whole uproar regarding what jobs we will end up getting or not. As an aspiring high school teacher, I am aware that I should feel more secure about my career path than most considering it is still a government job that forever will be in demand. Yet, I hear from other fellow students how the two departments that I will be in (Chinese and History) and currently dying, particularly History. Too many students are graduating with specialisations in both English and History, leaving many students with either permanent part-time or even casual positions at various schools. This, this prospect scares me. As a student studying two specialisations that are currently not in demand means…what exactly? No secure income, no confidence in my initial choice I made straight prime after my high school career. And the overall idea that I had made the worst decision almost 4 years ago. What is one meant to do with so much to worry?

I'm praying that this isn't a legitimate reflection of what my future will be :/ Credit to Kssreads

I’m praying that this isn’t a legitimate reflection of what my future will be :/ Credit to Kssreads

Perhaps my worries are quite minor to many of you; you probably think that I’m very naive and selfish to believe that my issues would ever become a huge deal to you. And possibly, this may be true. However, what these unhealthy thoughts have led me to is to consider doing many things that were outside my plans, outside of what I was taught and trained to do. I am considering of doing a Masters of Teaching for primary level in order to increase my prospects of being able to find permanent work. I am considering of joining various tutoring centres to become not only a tutor, but instead a tutor training leader to many growing tutors. I have thought of going overseas (if I was ever that desperate for an income) to teach children English in non-English speaking nations, such as China or South Korea. I have even thought of whether or not to start my own Chinese class for younger kids in my apartment (which will probably never run, but the thought was there once) Overall, after thinking over these various career paths that are connected to my future degree, I’ve come to realise that if all else fails (that is, if I am unable to find permanent work for a while), then my options are indeed limited. These thoughts are indeed giving me great anxiety, and uncertainty about my future as a high school teacher.

Was my decision correct? Should I have gone down a different career path? Was I too optimistic and too blinded by the idea that teaching teens would be the most rewarding thing I could ever do with my life?

Although so much of my thoughts continuously repeats “Yes, you were an idiot to even consider this path”, my heart screams:

“No, imagine the expressions on those kids’ faces when they finally remember that list of words they have been stuck on for the past 5 minutes. Imagine the great reward you will feel when you see the class test results from the yearly history exam, and find that no one failed the grade this year. Imagine them running to you in the morning to greet you, and remind you that they have completed the homework for today’s lesson and are ready to tackle their newest term assessment”.

It’s with these thoughts that are able to get me by so far, that have convinced me that yes Hyunnie, you have made the correct decision and that you are indeed walking the right path; the path that was made for you.

This image inhabits a mini dream of mine: to see all of my students heads down doing their work with no hesitation. Credits to GrowingLeaders.com for the image

This image inhabits a mini dream of mine: to see all of my students heads down doing their work with no hesitation. Credits to GrowingLeaders.com

And so tomorrow I turn 21, and has never been more confident and satisfied with my life than ever before. These past couple of years have been difficult, but have only contributed to me becoming the person that I am today. I hope that my reflection of my life has possibly given many of you out there the confidence to stand up and realise something. Perhaps it is that what you are doing now is exactly what you have always wanted, or perhaps the total opposite. Whatever your current situation may be, remember that this world is yours for the taking, and to remember that this life is only what you make it so, make the most of it. Do something that you would be proud of, would be happy to return back to everyday. I know that my future for the next couple of years will indeed be a difficult one, but I am the one in control; I am the one making the rules that I should follow.

I hope you all are having a wonderful day/night, and I wish you all the best for this new wonderful year of 2016~

❤ Hyunnie ^^~

Note: As of 2016, I will be referring myself as Hyunnie instead of Yami Hyunnie, as many have assumed that I wanted to make ‘Yami’ as my first name. Personally, I do prefer being called Hyunnie because in my opinion, the name ‘Yami’ belongs to someone else who is very close to my heart. However, if you do see the ID name ‘yamihyunnie’ on various sites (such as mydramalist.com *hint hint* follow me there *hint hint*) that is also me because ‘hyunnie’ seems to always be taken hehe. So, call me Hyunnie if you’d like 😉

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Author: Hyunnie

Hello~~ ^^ I'm a young blogger opening her first ever blog in order to share to the world reviews on some of the best and worst Asian dramas, movies, music; you name it! I am also currently guest-posting on Dramafever News. Mainly, I post about dramas on that site so if you are interested, check me out there! Please fill free to comment on this site and maybe suggest some stuff for me to talk about ^^ Hope you guys enjoy and see you later!

9 thoughts on “My Life in Reflection at 20 going on 21

  1. Happy 21st, baby girl!! And hope you have many, many more!!!

  2. Hyunnie – Congratulations on your birthday milestone! I have been a teacher for over 16 years, and I want to encourage your job choice.

    First of all, you have many gifts because clearly you are a talented writer. Also, getting a college degree shows a level of perseverance that not everyone has achieved. Sure, a Master’s of Teaching might set you apart from the rest of the candidates, but by having a degree completed, you have already accomplished something that several have not. I would, however, encourage you to get a Master’s out of the way before life and kids come along to fill up your hours.

    Teaching is truly a calling. There are many wonderful days, but also frustrating ones. I can honestly say that this job is one of my purposes in life, and knowing that has made me happy to go to work almost every single day. Many people have told me how blessed I am to be happy with my job, and even though the money is very low, the satisfaction of fulfilling my purpose and using my talents is huge.

    In the last few years, my eyes were opened to something about my profession. There are many teaching-related jobs out there! I worked for years before I became a mom. All of sudden, I had this great job with tenure and benefits, but I also had a baby that needed me. I chose to leave teaching for awhile, and when I went back to it, I discovered, tutoring for kids and at colleges, using my language skills rather than just teaching in my area of certification, after school homework programs, online teaching, etc. If you can develop a relationship with a school, often you can see little jobs here and there that may lead to more permanent jobs later.

    One huge thing that you have going for you is your youth. Without kids and a husband (I’m assuming), you really can travel the world to teach. That isn’t something that most people can do, and if you can, now might be the time. Also, some colleges overseas will let you teach with only a Master’s Degree, and sometimes with a Bachelor’s Degree.

    In the end, using your talents and gifts in whatever career you choose is very rewarding. Being stuck in a hot career that you hate would not be. Lots of people are going to give you advice (me included), but trust yourself some to know that most people are speaking about what they’ve experienced, but your journey may be completely different.

    Finally, I have to mention that I am a person of faith, so honestly, I pray about my struggles. It helps that I really do believe that there is a God that cares about my work. It makes stressing over things easier when I can ask for divine help! One thing my friends and I do here, if we have a question, is a one week plan. We write down our question, pray about it every day and read the bible every day for one week. We write down things we learn as we go. At the end of a week, we usually have an answer, or at least a direction. If that helps you, go for it.

    No matter what your faith, what your journey, what degrees you have – your life is at a beautiful jumping off place, right at the beginning. And even if you never teach a day, I doubt very much that you’ll waste your time here on earth. Cheers to your future!

    • Hi Mermaid Scribbler, it’s lovely to hear from you again. Thank you so much for the absolutely touching and uplifting comment! It is great to hear from a person who is well experienced and truly understands the concerns I have. Wow, to be such a dedicated teacher for 16 years is amazing, and really is motivating for me. You’ve made some amazing points in your comment (or should I say mini essay hehe) which certainly has convinced me that I’ve probably made the best possible choice for my future. It is just possibly with no proper experience yet, the thought of teaching classes is nerve-racking and seems like a daunting challenge for me; hopefully this won’t be the case and that I will do great!

      It is very comforting to hear that my degree can still be flexible in many other areas in the future apart from teaching in an actual school. I know I know, perhaps I was worrying too much so early on in my life, but it’s the fact that nothing has happened yet that scares me. As my peers all share their first experiences teaching in the classroom and my friends who have already started teaching share their first year experiences, their accounts just…opens my mind to bigger possibilities of failure and realising that this isn’t the path for me. Thankfully now, after hearing from your amazing experience as a teacher, wife and loving mother, I am certainly reassured that this decision that I’ve made years ago, was indeed the right one. So, thank you again Mermaid Scribbler~~

      Finally, I would like to congratulate you in all of your success that you have been able to achieve. As someone who is literally just starting her journey in life, you are indeed a great inspiration to me and probably many others around you in your own day-to-day life. It is wonderful to hear that you’ve had struggles that you’ve overcome, and received so much in life via your efforts and belief in faith. Cheers to you on your own success in the past, and I wish you even better greatness for the future. Thank you so much again, and I hope you have a wonderful 2016! ❤

  3. Aw, thanks! By the way, you might like the book, The First Days of School by Harry Wong. He is a genius! I also like Kagan Cooperative Learning. It encourages 100% participation. They have amazing trainings. Hugs. You’ll be fabulous! 😊

  4. Aw! Girl! The economy is tough. People keep searching for jobs and people switch careers. Good Luck is all I can wish for you! I know how frustrating it can be but wish you all the best!

  5. Hyunnie!

    Happy 21st birthday! This is such an awesome post; both heartfelt and honest without any hint of being self-centered (Shout out to jnewin for Tweeting this to me and reminding me what I was missing when not keeping up with AsiaReviewerManiac). I’m glad that you found strength through your challenges and are facing upcoming days without fear. As Rumi once said, “the wound is the place where the light enters you.”

    As for teaching, this is where I can probably offer a bit more practical advice. I’m currently in my second year of teaching and, at least in the US, there is a tremendous need for Special Education teachers (my licensure is in English and, right now, I am scheduled to complete my Special Education certification in August, so I will also be qualified to work in specialized settings). In the “high needs” settings (students with learning disabilities/emotional disturbances/language needs, schools without professionals for the most challenging cases, neighborhoods with majority low-income populations), there is actually so much demand for people who can work well in these settings that they are welcoming teachers from other countries (my mentor was Canadian).

    So, while I’m not sure what the situation is in AUS, teachers here generally do not tend stay unemployed for too long. Couple that with how many not-for-profit organizations always need people with that kind of social work experience, and the prospects of employment go up drastically when you are a licensed teacher, particularly with a sub-specialty that fills a need (and since you mentioned the Chinese center, I’m guessing you already have the tools to get a bilingual extension after a few credits?)

    So, yeah, don’t even worry about History/English dying. When in a room full of kids who have more problems you ever thought possible, the subject will be the last thing you’ll have to concern yourself with. There’s totally a career here.

    • Abdul!!! It’s been a while huh? Thank you so much for your sweet message! I didn’t even know you were a teacher! It’s amazing how many blogging teachers there are in the website today, and I feel quite reassured from your amazing advice. I was definitely considering doing some extra study into special needs as I am aware they are always in demand globally. However the program to obtain such qualifications is quite complicated here in Aus and so I sadly have been reluctant to pursue that route. But it’s amazing how much you have achieved with it being only your 2nd year of teaching; congratulations!

      I’m sure teachers will forever be in demand anyway however that fear that I’ve selected wrong years ago will forever haunt me until I settle with a permanent job. Today in fact I’m going to an interview for a tutoring job which I hope will assist me in gaining experience on how to effectively teach students what I am passionate about.

      So, while I’m gonna go through possibly the most nerve racking 20 minutes of my life so far today, I will definitely be remembering the advice you have given and the confidence you have in me. Thank you so much again Abdul, and I hope we can catch up soon in the future about…anything really hehehe

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