On November 1st, 2014, I began a life-changing adventure that would take me places I’d never dreamt. I started my international social work journey; a journey that I daydreamed about in grad school and while working in community-based mental health. Oh how I longed to be exhumed and rescued from the endless burial of clinical notes, a million post-it note “call back” reminders, and interdisciplinary team meetings that sharpened my skill of sleeping with my eyes open. I imagined riding off into the sunset to a third world country advocating for clean water, working at the United Nations for equal rights of women in the Middle East, or, maybe, I could assemble an aggressive effort to stop child sex human-trafficking. “That’s exactly what I’ll do,” I told myself each time I watched CNN or Al-Jazeera. While my colleagues caroled in unison their plans of pursuing doctorates or private practice ventures, I secretly diagnosed myself as an outcast. After separating the meat from the bones, I honed my interests and focused my efforts. Voila! After much research and the repeated humdrum of automated responses confirming receipt of my applications, I became an OCONUS Military Family Life Counselor. Having the option to work at any military base of any branch, I chose Ft. Bragg. Why not? At the time, I lived in Fayetteville, NC and it was the closest installation. “Sorry,” said the recruiter, “They’re full, but we have an opening in South Korea.” A dream come true! By the way, it is so rewarding to serve the military and their families. What a blessing!


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