Well, unfortunately March was another write-off… but I did go to church for Easter.
It was actually really weird. We were in Cyprus for Easter and on the 7th we called up the local Catholic church in Larnaca to ask what time the Easter service was on the 8th. A creepy sounding old priest answered the phone and he was SO rude. He said, “Easter isn’t tomorrow. It’s Palm Sunday. If you went to Church you’d know that.”
We both thought we’d gone insane and made a huge mistake so we double-checked the calender and it did say that Easter was on the 8th!!! I did a google search and it turned out that the Vatican has decided that, starting this year, Catholics in the Middle east will now celebrate Easter on the same day as Eastern Orthodox churches. The reason for this is to foster unity among Christians, since they are a minority in the Middle east. But how were we supposed to know that as tourists?! Plus what kind of priest makes people feel bad for WANTING to go to church!? hahaha. So strange.
Anyway, we ended up going to the Anglican service in Larnaca in stead… it was a beautiful service with a very impressive sermon. And we had a wonderful Easter.
Since my last post things just got worse. My supervisor has become a totally insane megalomaniac. She went as far as to actually lie about me to my course… I called her out on it, but neither my tutor nor the course director wanted to do anything about it. For them it was just more work and hassle to deal with, but it was a tipping point for me.
No job is worth this. I refuse to be forced to remain a victim by people that have a responsibility of pastor care and yet just can’t be bothered .They expected me to just put up with it… it is emotional blackmail (not just against me but so many other trainees that are having trouble with their supervisors) because they know exactly how much we’ve had to fight and work to get on the course.
Well, I didn’t want to play that game. I went off for 3 weeks due to stress and the day I got back I turned in my resignation.
Once I did that the course started shitting themselves. They basically offered me everything I have been begging for for months (i.e. getting a different supervisor/placement). But I said no. For me, it was just too little too late.
I am so disappointed with the course and honestly with the whole profession, which is supposedly about being open, honest, and caring. I felt really let down and now I just want to move forward and find a different direction for my life. I understand that this will entail a lot of other difficulties but at least I can have control over my actions and feelings again.
In the mean time, I have an insane 8 weeks of notice to work through yet (now 7). But during that time I can make sure I leave my clients properly and finish our work together, plus I can apply to other jobs.
Good luck to me… here’s to the future!
Well this unfortunately didn’t happen this year. It turns out that the cruises weren’t running while we were in Cyprus, which was disappointing. We had a nice two weeks in Cyprus over Easter but this goal still needs to be crossed off the list.
Hopefully, we can schedule our yearly Cyprus trip to coordinate with the cruises next year.
My outbound flight went really well. I tool 8mgs of medication, which was much less than the 30mgs I took last time (even when you take into consideration that the flight was shorter). I also remembered my “turbulence mantra” (haha), which always helps when things get a bit bumpy. I was so chilled out I actually managed to doze on and off a bit, which I haven’t been able to do on a plane for a long time.
I wasn’t as relaxed for the inbound flight, but mostly because I chose not to take any medication! I was so proud. I did have a small glass of wine with my dinner, but that didn’t do much for long. I made sure to be aware of any muscle tension and would relax if/when anything was tense.
The best thing I’ve discovered is that sitting on a window seat is great! Whenever there is any turbulence I look out the window at the land or clouds below… this helps to put the movement into perspective. Even though the turbulence might feel significant to me on the plane, when I look down I realize how little we are actually moving it is very reassuring and proves how insignificant the turbulence actually is.
I hope this means my fear is slowly decreasing.
1. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Mark Haddon
2. The Help, Kathryn Stockett
3. Forever Amber, Kathleen Winsor
1. We are reconsidering our Oxford wedding and instead thinking of going back to our first choice of a local country wedding. We frequently go on walks in a nearby village that has the most amazing little church, which I would love to get married in. The convenience of getting married locally is really significant, and the process of applying for permission to get married in a college chapel in Oxford and having the reception at the dinning hall has really been a pain. I definitely have a really good feeling about the country wedding location.
2.My father-in-law-to-be has already finished my finance’s suite and he’ll try it on for the first time tomorrow. It will need some work and alterations but I am so excited to see it already! Not only is it a really special gift for our wedding but it will also save us a lot of money.
3. As for my dress, I have decided on a style! I’d found an amazing dress online but unfortunately the company who made it has gone out of business, so I’ve decided to just get the dress made for me by a seamstress. My plan is to get it made in Colombia next time I go, which should actually work out cheaper than buying a dress in the UK. (And my mom has kindly offered to buy it for me… thus saving us another huge chunk of money.) The photo is basically what I want.
4. My grandparents just bought us las arras which are coins that are used in wedding ceremonies in Latin America and Spain. We decided on silver ones, which were a lot cheaper (and, I think, nicer) than in gold.
5. I’ve also decided on a reading for the ceremony… it is a part of C.S. Lewis’s chapter on marriage from the book Mere Christianity.
I’m taking this with me on vacation so should hopefully read through it quite quickly.
...and I am feeling pretty good about it. I think a big part of it has been the intense anxiety I’ve had to deal with the past few months. After all that, I feel like this is totally not a big deal. Is it possible that my threshold for anxiety has just been totally obliterated by everything that’s happened?! hahah It sure seems like it.
I am really exited about our trip to Cyprus and can’t wait to just go! I did go to my GP and got a new Diazepam prescription just in case. I’m also planning on having a nice drink at the airport before hand and am taking my fear of flying book to consult if I need to.
Yay, for vacation time!
19. As Time Goes By – any version
9. new bay windows in the living room and bed room.
I have been considering quitting my doctorate for a while now but I haven’t been able to make a decision…
REASON TO QUIT:
1. I am so stressed and unhappy. I am always on edge. I am not sleeping or eating well. I had a panic attack last week (my first). I am exhausted.
2. I don’t enjoy the work I am doing. I could not care less about finding a thesis topic or service related research. Plus I hate going to my placement… I do care about my clients but I hate how much harder my supervisor has made it for me to learn and make a difference in their lives.
3. I have come to the realisation that clinical psychology is not my “dream job”. If I never become a psychologist I won’t really care. It is just a job. Should I be killing myself over something that doesn’t actually mean that much to me?
3. My course is refusing to change my placement so I am stuck in this horrible situation for another 6 months.
4. I will probably need to do a viva to see whether I can even pass this placement. The means more work and stress… which I can’t handle right now.
REASONS NOT TO QUIT:
1. I will have a well-paid and secure career at the end of this. Plus I am being paid to train right now. So unlike a PhD, I am actually earning money.
2. I have already invested 7 months to it (takes 3 years in total). Plus all the time and energy I spent getting into the highly competitive program to begin with.
3. Making family and friends proud.
4. In 6 months I will be on another placement with a different supervisor… so things should be better.
I would be so grateful for any advice or input from people…
The good- I got my case report back yesterday. I was really nervous… everyone was… to get my results back. The possible results were: PASS, 1 week revision, 1 month revision, 2 months revision, FAIL. I was just hoping not to fail or get 2 months revision… and I ended up getting one week!! I felt so content. It was the first bit of good news in weeks. It is basically impossible to get an automatic PASS so I did as well as anyone could have really. But..
The bad- I was on placement today and I worked for 9 hours and 40 mins straight. I had 2 clients and the rest of the time I spent it doing admin. I didn’t have lunch and still didn’t even get everything done that I needed to do. My supervisor made “corrections” (i.e. mostly random changes that equate to”write the same thing you did but in my exact language”) to an assessment report, which took my 2 hours to complete. FML.
The ugly- I got a letter in the mail today from my course saying that my viva is scheduled for the 25th of April. UGH. What a joke. And I had a meeting with my course tutor yesterday during which he basically tried to make me feel guilty for going on vacation despite the fact that the only thing keeping me going is the knowledge that I’ll be in another country in two weeks. Oh, and can I just add… my supervisors are ugly bastards as well- does that count?
The meeting with my tutor and the placement lady went really badly. My views were heard but not really taken seriously. I am completely distraught and exhausted. I don’t want to carry on.
Being a clinical psychologist is a lovely profession but honestly I’m not sure any job is worth this. I feel horrible all the time. I have a constant feeling of dread and I am becoming such an angry person… surely all these things go against what the profession actually stands for.
I can either make the decision to quit now… which would mean I’d have to deal with:
1. Finding a new job/career with long-term goals
2. Dealing with my decision to quit… and possible feelings of failure that might come of that.
3. Losing the good friend I’ve made on the course.
OR I can stay and deal with:
1. Yet another meeting and new & inane “goals” that I have to accomplish.
2. 7 more months with my horrible supervisor (which might mean yet another horrible MPR and all these issues the next time around).
3. A possible viva.
4. Constant stress… while also juggling the normal DClinPsy pressures of constant learning and planning, case reports, exams, and thesis research.
I’m honestly just not sure I am strong enough.
Can I just quit now?
I’ve scheduled a meeting with my tutor and the lady in charge of placements on Thursday. The situation with my supervisor is just getting worse. I am miserable most days. I’m always stressed, not sleeping well, I cry at work all the time. I’m such a mess and can’t see myself getting through the next 6 months at my placement with that woman who won’t communicate with me and seems to have developed some personal vendetta against me.
Weighed myself today and I’ve gone up to 128lbs. I could tell I’d gained weight from the way my clothes were fitting but I couldn’t be too surprised… I’ve been eating crap and not working out recently. I’ve just been so stressed and short on time recently.
I’ve decided I really have to get myself back on track. I’m going to start tomorrow… eating well and doing the 30 day shred religiously!! I’m going on vacation in a month as well so it’s a good incentive to really kick start this goal again. Plus I want to get back to wedding dress shopping and don’t feel like I can do it at this weight.
I am just so angry with myself… at one point I was only 4lbs from accomplishing this goal. Oh well.
17. Stand by Me – Ben E. King
18. Mambo No.5 – Lou Bega
Well, it’s the last day of the Month and nothing.
I couldn’t go last weekend which is when I had planned to go to church… so it seems I’ll have to do better next month. I might aim to go twice in March… the 11th and 25h?
Got a rough structure for my book. A semi-autobiographical, modern hero quest. hahaha. Does it sound pretentious enough?
Really all I hope for is to actually get something down on paper and for it to be somewhat cathartic. I need a space to vent.
16. The Sign – Ace of Base
...have been really intense.
I had my stupid mid-placement review top-up meeting with both my supervisors and my tutor. I was so angry.
Before the meeting I had supervision with the crazy one and I was waiting for her to bring up the MPR… but she didn’t. So I brought it up myself and she was SO unwilling to speak to me about it which made me really angry. I basically forced her to have the conversation with me, which is outrageous… Supervisors SHOULD ALWAYS tell their trainees what they are going to say about their progress. That fact that she hadn’t told me anything last time is the reason things got so bad in the first place!
Anyway, once I forced her to respond to me she basically did not have one good thing to say. Despite all my hard work and progress she basically said she didn’t think it was sustainable and that actually I still had a lot to catch-up on. So I understandably got really angry and confronted her about it all. Speaking with other trainees I know that lots of them are at the same point as I am and I am not abnormally behind or fucking things up. There was nothing much she could say to me because the bottom line is that I was right. So I stormed out of her office and waited for the MPR which was 2 hours later.
During the actual MPR I told my tutor everything: how miserable I was, how hard I’ve been working, how heated that morning’s supervision had been. Despite all that I don’t think he really understood how crap the situation is. I don’t want to stay there. I don’t want a supervisor who doesn’t teach me, who is passive-aggressive and gives me more admin work to do out of spite, who doesn’t support me. I have to be so careful around her because I know that any little mistake will be used against me. I hate that with all the work I have, the thing I am most stressed about is constantly being hypervigilant, afraid, and angry around my supervisor.
Anyway, the MPR was horrible to go through but in the end did not turn out as badly as it could have done. Basically, I am not going to fail the placement nor will I have to have a viva. It was a joke sitting there at the end having them tell me “I think you had a much worse perception of things than they actually are”... well yeah, that might be because you never say anything positive to me.
At least it is over with now… but I can’t believe I still have to deal with her until September.