I was a Psychology major in college, much to the chagrin of my father. Well, that was one of my half dozen majors, for a couple or three semesters, in between majoring in Baseball Players and uh…. well, that’s pretty much all I remember about college.
…..hmmm…… baseball players…..
Wait, what was I talking about again?
I ended up with a degree in Psychology with a double major in Christian Ministry, which explains my affluent situation today, because everybody knows those are two lucrative career choices. Did I mention the chagrin of my father? He had the ridiculous notion that I should major in something that would actually provide some sort of financial support for myself. “Making a living,” he called it, and joked about how I was going to go about using my Missionary Art degree.
“Pffft,” I thought.
Fast-forward 14 years, and now I use my Missions, Ministry, Art, Psychology, and all that other highly valuable knowlege every day in my work at Truman W. Smith Children’s Care Center, and every two weeks when I look at my paycheck I think maybe dad was right….
But just for about two seconds. Because the truth is, THIS is what I was born to do…. I can’t imagine working anywhere but Truman Smith at this point in my life… and big paychecks are overrated, so I hear.
I picked my major in Psychology as a young, dumb 20-something college kid, because the classes were so very interesting. Once upon a time I planned to go to seminary and get a Masters Degree in Christian Counseling, but then life happened and I never finished grad school. But I still like diagnosing all my friends’ weird quirks and bad habits with my old DSM-IIIR
One of the things I remember was Holmes and his Life Change Chart, that ranks the big events in your life in terms of how much stress they cause you.
I took a gander at the scale on Wikipedia this morning, added up my score, and as it turns out, I am at risk of illness. Because my score was, uh, off the chart.
Life event/Life change units
Death of a spouse 100
Marital separation 65
Death of a close family member 63
Personal injury or illness 53
Dismissal from work 47
Marital reconciliation 45
Change in health of family member 44
Sexual difficulties 39
Gain a new family member 39
Business readjustment 39
Change in financial state 38
Death of a close friend 37
Change to different line of work 36
Change in frequency of arguments 35
Major mortgage 32
Foreclosure of mortgage or loan 30
Change in responsibilities at work 29
Child leaving home 29
Trouble with in-laws 29
Outstanding personal achievement 28
Spouse starts or stops work 26
Begin or end school 26
Change in living conditions 25
Revision of personal habits 24
Trouble with boss 23
Change in working hours or conditions 20
Change in residence 20
Change in schools 20
Change in recreation 19
Change in church activities 19
Change in social activities 18
Minor mortgage or loan 17
Change in sleeping habits 16
Change in number of family reunions 15
Change in eating habits 15
Minor violation of law 11
I don’t know quite what to make of that information: that I’m at risk of illness, but I’m thinking if I haven’t been admitted to Rusk yet, I’m gonna make it.
And who knows, maybe some day I’ll finish grad school, and this ridiculously crazy life that hasn’t killed me yet will make me an even better therapist.
But until then, dad, I know I’ll always have my Missionary Art degree to fall back on…