I was a pretty good student in school and managed to receive acceptances from multiple colleges. Finally, my family and I determined it would be best for me to attend the University of South Carolina (USC). Guess what? EPIC FAIL. Literally. It was a heart-wrenching reality of failure and nothing in me wanted to move forward. I was not ready for the responsibility of time, purpose and people.

The shame and humiliation of returning home and facing family and friends was a bad dream that seemed endless. I enrolled in the local technical college and completed some classes during my suspension. After my semester suspension was over, my family and I decided it was not best to return to USC. It was hard to face my reality of not returning.

I enrolled in the local liberal arts college and guess what? EPIC FAIL. Literally, but this time “again” was attached. I changed my major a few times and just could not get my direction. I finally enrolled in a sociology course and bingo! We were in love! I declared my major in sociology. I graduated and went on to graduate school. Eventually, I went back to school (with a husband and 2 kids later) and obtained my master’s degree. What next? I decided to take the PhD plunge.

My shame and humiliation were the vehicles used to establish humility within me. I had to learn the art of responsibility. I’ve been so ashamed of my failing process for many years. I’ve traveled and taught abroad, published, lectured, presented, researched, and have multiple academic teaching awards.

It’s okay that our paths are different, as long as we arrive at our destiny destination. I’ve processed all the pain; I’m free to share my soul’s journey. Failure is the first sighting of a future. signed, Dr. CASM

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