It was with both excitement and some resignation that I began my first real full-time job this week. I was excited becasue I can finally put those 20 years of schooling to work and start making some money but on the other hand I get to do this for the rest of my life. During my not too horrendous but still long commute home I took some thinking time and I'm still not sure that I ever thought I would get here or really wanted to get here. Yeah I don't miss the homework or the tests or anything like that, but I will miss the long vacations and being able to just not go to class if you just don't have time or don't feel like it (not that I really did that much). But I guess it's time for me to be responsible and "grown up" now. I think it'll just take me a while to get used to not having the end of something in sight...end of semester, year, program, etc.
My first week on the job was pretty good. I was basically observing for the whole week. I have lots of experience with kids but not a lot of experience with sensory integration, the primary frame of reference used at this clinic. So I felt like a fieldwork student again as I was following the OTs around and trying to get used to everything. But the difference came on Friday afternoon when one of the OTs had to leave early and asked me if I would be comfortable taking her afternoon kids for her!! My first thought was "oh my goodness, it's my first week" but then I realized that I would have to jump in some time and it might as well be now. It helped that I was co-treating with another therapist from a different specialty though. So at least they knew the kids already. It went fine though. I'm not sure, actually I am sure that I didn't know completely what I was doing but the kids didn't have any major meltdowns and I think overall things went quite well. And after being informed earlier that day that my California license had gone through I could write my own daily notes on the kids and sign them with OTR/L and not need anyone to co-sign. I guess that really is the mark of being a working professional.
So the first week was a whirlwind of learning names, where things are, how to do everything and all that. But I'm beginning to remember some things and it should only get easier from here, I hope.