Why I Won’t be Going to School Today

Today, Cypress College is back in session for the spring semester. I won’t be going today, tomorrow, or the next day, or even next week. There is some BIG news I’m excited to share today. Here’s the story:

When I started college a few years ago, I had my heart set on becoming a nurse (like 95% of all teenage girls, right?). But a few semesters into college, I really started looking into the program and hearing the statistics and the competitiveness and realized that nursing might not be the best route for me to go — especially starting from a city college. This wasn’t an easy realization for me. I was really disappointed and now, really scared because I didn’t have a major in college and I was supposed to be transferring over to a state university soon.

As God’s timing usually goes, during this exact time I decided to change my major, my church began a week-long, church-wide fast they do every year. The week is called “Seek Week” and it is a powerful seven days. The entire congregation fasts (removing something from one’s life and replacing it with prayer) from social media, and then each individual chooses an ADDITIONAL thing to fast from. The purpose of this week is to seek God with all of our time and to seek His voice more in our daily lives. I was so excited to use this week to really make time and space to pray and seek God.  In addition to getting rid of all social media accounts for a week with the rest of the church, I really felt like I wanted to get rid of noise. It sounds weird, but I felt like the best way for me to hear God’s voice was to take out the noise that clutters my daily life. So I cut out T.V., and replaced it with silence. I cut out listening to the radio in the car, and used the time in silence to pray. I cut out all music, so I’d go on my morning runs in silence, using that time to think and pray as well. With so much silence in my life, I really concentrated on praying and seeking for direction on my major in college. I asked. And I prayed. Prayed. Prayed.
What was I supposed to do with the rest of my life?  How am I supposed to decide that at 19? I knew God worked in mighty ways, but to be honest, I was doubtful. I was not expecting to get the answers I was praying for so soon, and so firmly.

At the very end of this week-long fast, I was going through some old drawers in my room when I stumbled a packet of papers for Cypress’ Diagnostic Medical Sonography program… AKA – Ultrasound. I started to read the papers and everything about the program. I researched the field of ultrasound, what the job includes, etc. I was intrigued.. interested.. and still, doubtful. I continued to pray for the next month about what direction I should be headed in life, praying and praying that God would make that known to me. Over that month, I kept meeting people that had some connection to the ultrasound career field; whether they were in school, already employed, or interning. As I continued to seek and pray, I really began to feel like this might be something God is leading me towards. A few weeks later, I had class registration. I decided to take a chance and try to register for some of the Ultrasound program’s prerequisite classes … and something happened that hadn’t in any of my college semesters thus far; I got every single class I registered for. Not one was too full for me. Not one was I put on the wait list for as it so often goes for Health Science classes at Cypress.

Call it luck. Call it coincidence. Call it what you will  – but I call that God at work.

The next two semesters, I continued taking the prerequisite classes needed before I could apply for the program. With taking each class, it became more and more apparent to me that this was something that I was going to love. Just learning the anatomy and the physiology of the human body and the way it all works together- both voluntarily and involuntarily – was fascinating.

Fast forward to December 2014 and everything was great. I was getting all the classes I needed, loving what I was learning, and excited for what was to come. But then everything changed.
At the very end of the semester, I had a meeting with one of my counselors where it was revealed to me that I had several classes left to take, and that I must RE-TAKE 2 classes that I had already taken and scored a B+ in — simply because my chances of getting into the program without ALL A’s in my courses were slim. It would take me another two years to finish my prerequisite classes & retake my two B+ classes, assuming that I got an A in all seven classes.

Long story short:
I wouldn’t finish school until Spring of 2018.

This was incredibly discouraging. I felt defeated. I felt stupid because I missed getting “A”s by nearly three percent. I felt scared because I didn’t have a back-up plan. And I felt confused, because I thought that once I figured out what I wanted to do with my life it was supposed to be all smooth sailing. That’s when my parents suggested that maybe Cypress wasn’t the best option for this program. I prayed some more. We started searching for an alternative.

That alternative is what I am writing about today.

I am so so so excited and grateful to say I am continuing my journey at a new school! I have been accepted to begin the Diagnostic Medical Sonography program at Platt College!

Tears of joy, excitement, and sheer thankfulness to God have been flowing like a river these past few weeks. I could write an entire other post on just how evident God has been in the process of me finding a new school and opening of these doors for North-West College and just how perfectly the school and the DMS program is for me. God’s plan B was far, far, far, better than my plan A could have ever been — and I am so grateful He has held me so closely throughout this roller coaster of a college experience.

So, in April, I begin an 18 month program. I will be in school four days a week, 7 hours a day, for a year and a half straight. No summer, spring break or any other breaks besides one week off at Christmas and an occasional long weekend here and there. The last 6 months of the program will be an externship, which upon completing, I will graduate – in October of 2016 – a whole two years earlier than I would have at Cypress.
Thankful. Thankful. Thankful. My only words.

Your prayers meant so much to me throughout this process, and now more than ever, I ask for them again. Pray for the strength of my mind and heart as I prepare to begin this extremely intense program. Pray for endurance and for focus over the next 18 months. And mostly, pray that I can be a light for Christ at this school and to whomever I cross paths with. I have a crazy story of the way God brought me to North West and I know I can use that to start a discussion about who God is.

I share this incredibly long novel for two reasons: one being to update anyone who might slightly care about what is going on in my personal life, but more importantly, to encourage anyone who might not feel like God doesn’t have a perfect plan for their life. I am here as a testimony that if you acknowledge Him in all your ways, He will make your path straight.

What a crazy season of change it has been and will be. But I am so excited to get started on the rest of my life. All for Your glory God.

Let’s do this!

 

xo
Toni

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