You know how new things can sometimes appear daunting? Perhaps you are one of the plucky few who faces every challenge with immense optimism and courage, but unfortunately, I'm not. Instead, I'm someone who second-guesses my decisions until the very last minute. In the beginning of January, I began my esthetics program and I am kicking myself that I didn't take that step sooner.
Becoming a Student Again
With absolutely no idea what to expect, I showed up for the first class in the beauty makeup class that I'd signed up for. Who was I kidding? I'm a girl who applied makeup only on occasion and didn't know anything about technique. I felt like such a fraud as I walked into that room.
There was only one other student in the class and she was freshly graduated from the esthetics program. She was already comfortable with the instructors, the school, and even with makeup application and makeup products. I was the odd one out. Everyone was really nice, assuring me that it was okay that my knowledge was limited—that it was better as they would have had to undo what I might have erroneously picked up from the face-altering world of online makeup artistry.
The first few days were a whirlwind of information absorption and long hours. The doors to the world of makeup were slowly opening to my deer-in-the-headlights gaze. Within a few days, I had reached my max and still had over a week to go. My head was exploding with all of the facts I had learned...so much so that I wasn't sure if I'd actually retained anything out of shell shock. Plus, there was the looming final exam and full beauty makeup application where I would be timed and critiqued before certification—you can be sure my stomach had been perfecting acrobatic moves since that news. Time and art don't go hand in hand IMO. If you need an extra 5-10 minutes to perfect your craft, then you need it and you should take it. I couldn't imagine running out of time and failing the exam.
Many friends and family came in to model for me and left looking gorgeous. I began to see a pattern in my developing style. The natural look that enhances intrinsic beauty became my go-to with each person. In the end, I managed. A snowstorm gifted us with a snow day which postponed the final to a week and a half later. This allowed me more time to study the material and practice makeup on my final model. Saved by the snow.
As the week wore on and time passed, my anxiety grew and grew. My health suffered, each internal issue manifesting itself on my skin. This continued to build until the day before the final when I finally switched gears. I went to church for the first time all month and gained the right perspective. It was just makeup. Eternity's truths are far more important and outweigh any other focus. Sigh. I let my fears dissolve as God's peace sank in. And when it came time for my final, I couldn't wait to begin. Needless to say, I passed and was able to release the breath I'd been holding for 3 weeks.
Sticking to the Plan
The week before my makeup final, the two programs overlapped and I began the esthetics program. It's been a dream come true. One that I didn't know I had. I've gotten lots of facials over the years, reaping their instant benefits and relaxing at the healing hands of my Esthetician. I always thought it would be a rewarding career, but never imagined I'd jump in to make it happen for myself. Now I'll have the chance to do the same for others.
The pressure is on to finish by the end of July and take the state board tests in the Fall—yes, there are two. I'd love to begin working with the start of the school year in September, but I'll have to take it one day at a time. Each and every moment, whether cramming over book work or perfecting my facial techniques, is relevant in this journey. In the end, those new career doors will open and I'm already excited at the glimpses I've had of what lies beyond.
If you're on a new journey, please share it with me! There is nothing good in remaining stagnant; whether you're re-inventing yourself in a career, a relationship, a new home, new state or country, your journey is important to the future you who will emerge on the other side.