I worked my ass off in pre-requisite classes last year, observed more than 100 hours of therapy, slaved over the GRE and the overall application process...and it all paid off. I got accepted to my top choice, I'm a graduate student, and in two years, I'm going to be a speech-language pathologist. Wowza.
Despite all that, there's a part of me that still feels out of place. I'm surrounded by so many hardworking women (and a whopping 2-3 men!) and brilliant professors and I'm sitting here thinking, "how did they let my scraggly self in here?" I'm hardly a Type A, I've never been "the very best" at anything, I haven't known that I've wanted to do this my entire life. Was it just dumb luck that they let me in here?!
No. No, no, no, no, no.It's so easy to fall into the self-deprecating trap of telling yourself you don't deserve to be where you are and to have what you've worked so hard to have. We deflect compliments and claim dumb luck for our greatest accomplishments. Maybe it's in the name of humility, but maybe it's also a load of crap.
Getting into grad school wasn't dumb luck; it was hard work and well deserved. Quitting my well paying job to go back to school for something new wasn't no big deal; it was a huge effing deal. And I'm realizing that it's entirely okay to feel overwhelmed, terrified, nervous, etc. during a major life change, but it is never okay to let yourself feel inadequate or undeserving when you've worked your ass off to get to where you want to be.