My Final Week: I graduated! Reflecting Back and Looking Forward

<p>New career, new me! I got lash extensions and a hair cut, and I treated myself to nail art.</p>

Here it is, my final blog. While I’m so happy and excited to have reached this part of my life, I’m also very sad because of all the change that comes with it. I have so much to say, but where do I start?

This journey, as you all have heard me say before, has been difficult.. I’ve cried, I’ve laughed, I’ve  wanted to give up, I’ve felt unstoppable. I’ve never felt so many emotions in such a short period of time. I can remember, last January, when I went to Euphoria Institute to speak to the nicest admissions representative I’ve ever met. We discussed the potential of me attending that campus for the nail tech program. We also talked about where I currently was in my journey and where I wanted to go. I told her about the previous school I attended, and why I wasn’t there anymore but I didn’t let anything stop me. At that time I wasn’t 100% sure about where I wanted to go with this whole nail thing, but I knew that I loved it and I was good at it. All I needed was the right training! I still remember how I felt as I sat in that chair, the butterflies in my stomach because in that moment I knew, “This is only the beginning!”

<p>I wrapped up schooling with a pedicure and nail art, of course.</p>

The last seven months I’ve met some of the coolest, funniest, most authentic, lovable women. I will continue a friendship with some after school, and I appreciate the journey I walked with all of my classmates.

Not everyone is meant to be apart of your life forever, some are just for a season but either way I’ll cherish the moments and memories we’ve shared. Throughout these past two weeks, I have been extremely emotional.

Throughout the time I was in school, many of you know, I worked full-time as a server at the Hard Rock Cafe on the Las Vegas strip. Most weeks I didn’t have a single day off: I went to school Monday through Thursday evenings and most weeks, I worked Thursday through Sunday, some weeks more. Now, I’m able to look forward to more family time with my husband and kids, and also some very important "me time!" I will no longer have to go to bed late after studying and waking up early to go to work, or give the kids a kiss goodbye in the morning only to see them again when I’m kissing them good night. No more missing birthdays or just missing them in general and I’m so excited for that! 

<p>I love the way these turned out!</p>

As far as how school went for my last two weeks, it was pretty slow surprisingly but we made the best of it and enjoyed every moment. Since I started school, last June, I’ve been so focused on learning and completing my assignments that I didn’t take the time to get pampered.

Now that I’m down to the final two weeks, I’m kind of regretting not taking advantage of these free services that would normally cost a lot. I decided to finally try some of it out. I cut off a lot of my hair, I’ve gotten eyelash extensions, and I got a fill and some fancy nail art. It was my turn to be spoiled and I was living it up! I was so happy to have met these lovely, growing women! 

Other than enjoying the new me, I had to stay focused on taking advantage of the time I had in school to practice. I was able to get a final appointments in as well: a pedicure appointment in with my only male client, a beautiful fill with black polish for a mom who is going to visit her daughter, a sculpted full set with pink polish on another nail tech student, and finally I had the chance to give a loyal client her last sparkly gel pedi and fix her gel polish one last time! Of course, I practiced some beautiful sculpted nails on my mini fake fingers, all acrylic and glitter! I must say, after looking through all my nail pictures, post, and blogs, I see so much progress and I’m only getting better.

<p>You can't go wrong with nude!</p>

It was time to finally clock out, and I’m not going to lie to you, my nerves were shooting through the roof. I guess it was because I felt like this journey was never going to end and now that it has I don’t know what to do, but my classmates and cosmo friends made it the best experience ever. One that I’ll never forget. Being from Pennsylvania and residing in Nevada, I had no family members that were able to be there for that special moment, but these girls made it so I felt no different.

<p>My friends all signed my letters!</p>

All the love shown to me that evening was so overwhelming that my eyes were so swollen when I got home, but they were all tears of joy and victory! One of the school advisors scheduled me for my state board written exam for February 8th, one week from my graduation date. I’m not 100% sure what’s next, but I do know I’m headed in the right direction. I plan to take one day at a time and keep my head held high. God gave me the strength to make it past the hardest part. Now it’s to time to end this chapter and begin the next with full confidence in the steps I’m taking.

<p>These are (some) of the amazing and loyal friends who I have fallen in love with and am lucky to know.</p>

Thank you so much to those who have followed my journey and continue to SpreadJoLove! This world we call home can be so negative, ugly, and dark at times. As we continue to walk our paths, let’s continue to shine, and spread light, joy and love to all around us! We’ll make a difference one smile, one hug, one nail service at a time! 

Love,

Jojo

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