“Was that a 54?!”,”This wasn’t in the book”, & other thoughts I had while taking my funeral director’s license test.

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I’m kind of terrible at updating this when I want to, so I’m gonna attempt to write this like it was before my exam and then after. Last week was pretty hectic and intense. I was having to write multiple submissions for case summaries as well as trying to study for my funeral director’s state license test. On Thursday, I presented my chapter about disinterment and was told by a couple people that my presentation was the most entertaining, that I was engaging and not boring, so that made me feel good.

Then the panic set in. I was taking my state test the next day and I didn’t feel prepared at all. I tried studying with my classmates, but that just made me lose focus, so I went home to take a break and clear my head before I went at it. I wanted to take my test a week ago, but my license was expired and I was waiting on my new one to come in the mail. A couple of my classmates have already taken it, and their “confidence in me” was making me feel worse. Saying things like, “well I passed it, so you’ll be fine” wasn’t really a motivating factor to me. I needed to feel confident about it for myself, and I didn’t.

After studying all night and constantly checking back and forth between my study guides and the statutes, I felt a little bit of confidence and now was just anxious to get it over with. I wasn’t scheduled to take it until 1:30pm the next day, so I had all morning to sit around and just wait to leave, which wasn’t making my anxiety any better. I ended up getting down to the testing place in Laguna Hills faster than I anticipated. I sat in the car for a little trying to gain the confidence of “just do it!”, and walked into the facility.

After getting lost in the complex for a hot minute (which definitely didn’t help the nerves), I found the right building and walked in to a small room of bored looking workers. They reiterated the same speech day in and day out, so I’m sure they’re just over it, but their blase nature was making it somehow worse. I was escorted into my cubicle and began the test.

Now, I have agreed to keep the nature of the test and questions I hear in confidentiality, so I’m not gonna discuss the test questions. But I will say, as I was taking the test my anxiety started to go through the roof. There were multiple answers where I was just confused as all hell. I couldn’t figure out exactly what it was asking of me, and I would sit there and reread the question 3 and 4 times and just pick one to get it over with. As I was getting down to maybe the last 10 or so questions, I was sitting there trying to figure out if I could actually pass with the amount of times I guessed what I thought to be the right answer.

I’m normally a pretty fast test taker, and I’m usually pretty good at getting the question from 4 down to 2 answers that I’m wavering between. I did this so many times on the test and then had to sit there and say “ok, it’s one or the other, what sounds best?“, and then panic that I was picking what I thought was best and not what they thought was best. By the time I was finishing the test, I wanted to burst into tears.

I walk out of the room, and the lady that checked me in says “I’ll take your paper, here’s your ID” and she’s got my results sitting in front of her. I start to scan the upside down paper for the word “Congratulations” and I don’t seem to see it, and the score from my angle looks like it says 54. A twinge of panic sets in and I have the urge to start crying, but she’s having me sign off that I got my personal belongings and that I’m initialing here and there. Then she turns the paper towards me and goes, “congratulations” in the most monotone, non-expressive way, and I make a literal squealing sound and then immediately try to contain it. I PASSED! With a score of 84! I couldn’t believe it, and I grabbed my keys and headed for the bathroom where I could actually breathe a sigh of relief!

I went to my car and started blasting tunes and I went straight to my dad’s work to fax the results to the Bureau. Called them as soon as I faxed it and a gentleman told me they received it and sent it to licensing.

So as of right now, I don’t have a license number yet because they update Monday through Friday, and it was 3pm on a Friday. Right now, it’s Sunday afternoon and by the time I get up for school tomorrow, I will have my permanent FDR license number!

I still need to get through this last week of summer (Thursday’s final can’t come soon enough), and then I’ll be off for 3 weeks! It can finally start being summer for me!

“Maybe I should switch careers?” and other thought’s that have been running through my head besides studying. Part 1.

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That title’s starting to look like a damn Fall Out Boy song title. Anyway:

Just when I thought things were going smoothly and I was handling everything, the 2 weeks till the end of summer session deadline has come, and I’ve now realized how fucking STRESSED OUT I am. I don’t know why I thought this semester was going to get easier? I wrote my planner out for the semester and was overwhelmed with that. Next week starts the 2 weeks of Law 2 that I’ve been dreading the most. It’s expected of me to read chapters 1-9 of one book and chapters 1-10, 14, 15, and appendices of another! I don’t have enough hours in the day to do this (which is why they tell you it at the beginning of the semester, I know this). Not only do I need ALL of that, but there’s 2 presentations in there that have to happen as well.

Oh but wait, that’s only one class. My other class has a presentation and a final within the next week that I’m not really jazzed for. OH BUT WAIT! My online class has 3 more chapters and 3 homework modules, not including the 3 chapters and 3 sets of homework modules I did today. Oh and a final. Of course.

Wait, what’s that?! There’s more?! Oh well I’m glad you asked. Yes! There is more! I got my paperwork for my funeral director exam that I need to take basically ASAP. So if I wasn’t already stressed out from all the school work I need to get done, my future career’s first test for licensure looms over me. And we’re encouraged to take it as soon as we take the test in class so that it’s fresh in our minds for the state exam. Guess what that means? I might be taking the test in less than 5 days! To say I’m nervous is a damn understatement.

I’m trying to keep my confidence (that I once had) up, but I’m scared as hell. I’m scared that if I “just take it!” like she says, I’m going to fail. That’s the worst that can happen, but I hate failing. I mean, who likes it? The only thing keeping my confidence (ego) up is the fact that I’m getting 102% in my online class, so that’s a gimme. I’m doing well in my other class (a B as of the last progress report). As long as I keep those up and focus on getting good scores in Law 2 (fingers crossed), I can pass the semester.

I think all that’s holding me back is the fact that I need to take the test in class and see how I do, feel it out, before I take the state test. For whatever reason, I’m assuming my test in class is going to be harder (because, let’s be real, it’s true), so I’m hoping that will give me a good gauge on how I’ll do on the FDR test.

Fingers crossed, man. I’m gonna crack open another beer and contemplate going to vet tech school. *wink*