I have been a massage therapist student now for 3 months and it has been intense to say the least, but it is also been one of the best experiences of my life. Yes, it is hard work and essentially you get what you put into it, but I am fortunate to have excellent teachers who actually work in the field as RMT’s, so are able to offer practical experience, as well as teaching us the fundamentals that we have to cover as part of the course.
The real surprise for me is how amazing my classmates are – right from they beginning everyone has been super supportive. We all share the same mentality of “we all started this together so we will finish it together” which I think is awesome. We have become very much of a family in a short space of time, helping each other out during the tough times of exams or failed quizzes, staying behind to help each other get through sections we aren’t entirely sure about and of course celebrating the successes we have had along the way.
For me, it has been strange going back to school as an adult, let alone studying in a new country I feel like I am constantly trying to figure out what is expected of me. Canada has a different education system to that of UK and I seem to be doing more tests and exams than I ever did back home. I am covering seven subjects at one time which, in all honesty can be intense and stressful – from Anatomy and Physiology to Myology and everything else in between, but I am enjoying learning and challenging myself again. There is, believe it or not, some language barrier/differences I am still overcoming (yep those damn Z’ds instead of S’s) and of course even simple things like items of clothing (sweaters here as opposed to jumpers) can prove problematic; my classmates joke I am learning an extra subject trying to learn Canadian but I guess I am teaching them a bit of Queens English too! I am learning more than I ever thought possible, and when I look at the students ahead of us I am constantly thinking I am never going to remember everything like them, but then I stop myself and remember I have only been here 3 months and I have 17 more months to go ( a lifetime).
It goes without saying that I am learning a lot about myself as a person both emotional and physically. I have learnt that I can do anything if I put my mind to it, that I have a stronger will power than I thought and I can actually say no to people. This has been something I have struggled with throughout my life and have in the past found it especially hard to say no to friends or family, especially when I feel like I will be missing out on something or letting them down. I still struggle with trying to find the work/life balance here but I also know I have to get my priorities right in order to get where I want to be. Other things I have learnt about myself is that I get upset when I’m frustrated and don’t understand something, also I have been told that my muscles are super tight and I am the most un-relaxed person – well all I can say is that its a good job I have chosen this course where people get to practice their massage skills on me!