I wanted to talk a little bit about the start of the CMHAW Program, my first week into this course was amazing. We had the opportunity to have our Orientation into the program with one of the most inspirational people I have met thus far. During that time, you begin your journey into self-discovery. Now, six months in, I feel that there is so much that I have learned about myself, and also about others. My favourite class so far in the Community Mental Health Addictions Course is I would have to say Communications. Not only was the teacher great, but you are put into a place where you are to learn styles of communicating through role playing, classroom activities, and group discussions that go deep into your personal life and experience, if you so choose to share with your peers. There have been also many challenges so far in the course. About a month and a half ago, we were put into a class that had many chapters of readings, notes, and thorough study. It came as a sort of a “shock to the system” when we were mostly used to a “hands on” and a more laid-back work load. I also found things in my Integrated Field Practice to be challenging as well. I have been put into many different and sometimes (I’m not going to lie) uncomfortable situations. The thing is about this course, and this field of work in general, is that you must form a thick layer of skin. I say this because a lot of what we are put into is not for the faint of heart. Although there are times where I feel a bit agitated, there are also times of success. You may find yourself seeing a client going through breakthroughs in personal development that you are there to witness. Little things like this can brighten your day! These are the things we are working for. We want to help, even if just a little; to make someone smile, or feel just a bit better about them.
Our other classes are great – we have gone from leaning about self-care and self-actualization, stereotyping, First Aid, poverty, to the roles that government has played in making jobs more accessible to persons with mental illness, and everything in between. There are so many different things that we have gone over through this short amount of time so far. There are actually a few times that you go into class excited, because you just want to know more about it. I don’t know that I have ever gone into class, dreading that day because I just knew it would be boring. All in all, this course is so much more diverse in content than I would have ever thought. I know that I will be coming out of this experience knowing so much more, and understanding people unlike I have in the past, and most importantly, I will be coming out of this program knowing much more about myself than I have ever in my life.