Wanting to be a massage therapist has actually been a recent goal of mine. I actually started off in college prior to coming to Avalon. However, I am now dedicated to becoming a licensed massage therapist and I feel that my background is important in understanding why I have chosen this career path.
I come from a family of extremely high achieving people. My mother is a doctor that has been practicing for over twenty years and my father is a colonel in the military working on his second masters degree as well as attending law school. The expectation for me to at the very least get one college degree was very present for most of my life.
I knew from a young age that I enjoyed the idea of helping people heal but I saw the stress it constantly brought my mother so I decided to not pursue medical school. At the age of ten I found that I enjoyed working with my hands and I put that energy towards making art. I decided against pursuing art as a career because I was expected to study either law or STEM. Throughout the rest of my schooling I explored many other options for careers. I decided to major in history for college.
I had a difficult experience at my university. I was dealing with many mental health issues and I was not taking care of myself. All of my time and energy was dedicated to studying and getting good grades. At the end of my first year I felt completely drained. I spent my summer working and continued to think about what I actually wanted to do with my life. I decided to continue with school but a week into my second year I was so burnt out that I could not even look at my textbooks.
My burnout eventually built up into a mental health crisis and I decided to withdraw from my classes to take time to care for myself and my mental health and decide what I actually wanted to do with my life.
I spent the last year exploring options for schooling and jobs. I also took time to take care of my body by working out more and discovered my love for exercise and movement. I found that I could not sit at a desk all day and be satisfied with the work I was doing and I began to explore jobs where I could work on my feet.
I had a love for more holistic approaches to healing at a young age and I wondered if I could pursue a career in a field that included a respect for methods of healing outside of western medicine.
I looked into those careers and found that massage therapy had many similarities to a career that I would enjoy having.
I have received massages before when I was younger and had many issues with back pain and my massage therapist had helped bring more balance into my life in other ways as well. I decided to research more about massage therapy and looked into what the work environment was like as well as the salary and what the schooling would be like.
I was excited about the idea of a career in massage and I decided to look for schools in my area. I found Avalon and read that it was the best rated massage school in Houston and decided to attend if I was going to pursue massage therapy. I spent a month really thinking about my career and set my goal. I sent in the deposit a week before the term and began looking for ways to make money to pay for my classes. I have been paying for classes without having access to my college fund and having to work to attend has made my drive to complete my schooling and get my license.
The classes that I have taken so far have been so enjoyable for me and I feel a sense of friendship and family that has made me look forward to more education. I still do not have support from some of my family for my career choices but I feel a joy and dedication to helping people through massage therapy because this is what I truly want to do with my career at least for the next several years. I am truly appreciative of the education and support from my instructors and my fellow students and hope I will continue to have the drive that I have currently.
If you are an Avalon student interested in applying for the Dr. Sophie Rydin Scholarship, please click here.