Monday, June 17, 2013

on saying goodbye

Today is my last day of work at Westmont. After weighing the decision for months, finally putting in my notice, and then finishing out one last semester, I am finally finished with a three-year career in the Psychology Department. A seven-year stint in Academia, counting my time as a student here.

Sorting through photos from my Graduation events in 2010
I remember my first day at Westmont as a shy, terrified, and tear-soaked eighteen-year-old about to embark on my first semester away from home. I remember the day four years later when I arrived back on campus for my first day of work as a graduate. Being thrown into the fire having to learn two positions on my own and without much direction. The first day of my second year when the fear was gone and all I could think was "I've got this".

The cute little bookshelf in my office
Three years is a long time.  There were so many triumphs, so many accomplishments. The flash of comprehension in a student's face when after the fifth or fiftieth time explaining something, they finally get it. The change in a student between freshman to senior year. The "thank you"s and "you're so great"s and "I couldn't have done it without you"s that come at the end of the year. The sense of pride for my students' accomplishments at the Senior Tea and Graduation. The brave friend requests on Facebook that always happen after a student's junior year, never before.

Psychology Class of 2013 and Faculty; I'm on the far left
Psychology Class of 2012 and Faculty; I'm on the far left
Psychology Class of 2011 and Faculty; I'm on the far right
There were the not-so-great times, too. The days when I would get so frustrated at a policy or a concept or a student that I would just have to cry. The days where I didn't feel like I made a difference. The days when I felt stuck or lost or simply without direction, or when something was said that made me feel utterly worthless.

prayer chapel lawn // duck pond
two of my favorite lunch spots on campus
Oak grove below Formal Gardens
Formal Gardens
front of the prayer chapel // walkway above dining commons
There are the changes in myself from the flighty college student to the "mature professional" I am now. The relationships and bonds forged with coworkers through mutual struggle. The laughs shared at meetings and Christmas parties and dinner parties.

But today, I say goodbye, and this is an incredibly bittersweet occasion. Westmont has a very special place in my heart, and it always will. It has had a strong hand in making me the person I am today: academically, spiritually, emotionally, and professionally. But it's time to move on.

Our administrative building: Kerrwood Hall
I am excited for this next phase of uncertainty, believe it or not. God will provide for us. We will have to rely completely on Him as we figure out what's next. Doors will be opened and closed throughout the process, and that will be okay. We will be okay.

God's got this.

one of my lunch spots // the fountain on the President's Patio
color after a Santa Barbara Winter

1 comment:

  1. Wow, what a beautiful campus! I also left my first post-college job for a new adventure earlier this year. It's challenging and scary, as change always is, but it sounds like you are on the right track. Let God lead your way!


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