A few weeks ago I sent out my next round of CPE (Clinical Pastoral Education) application packets. (CPE, if you don’t know, is the vehicle for training and certifying chaplains.) I’ve completed three units of CPE and need a minimum of a fourth one to apply for board certification. As I spent about a week assembling the necessary papers, I began to wonder if this is more of a test of endurance than anything else! The final versions had upwards of 50 pages: forms, previous CPE supervisor evaluations, my CPE self-evaluations, resume, autobiography… yikes!
Organizing myself and assembling the paperwork really wasn’t the issue. One of the most difficult parts for me was taking my work history and life experience and writing about it with passion, enthusiasm and confidence… without bragging. As Peggy Klaus says “You have to toot your own horn without blowing it!”
I’m learning the delicate balance of stating what I know I’m called and gifted to do — vs. sounding like a stand-in for Mother Teresa, PT Barnum and Einstein all rolled into one. I suppose the easiest way to fix that is to hand over my paperwork to my family and let them set me straight! But even they would get bored after about page 3. Maybe page 4. My husband proofed my resume for me, but other than that, it was my task.
I have a potential interview in the next few weeks. It’s exciting. It’s also humbling. And terrifying. Humbling to ask references to give me a letter to submit… and terrifying because I really struggle with that whole stage fright thing. (More than you’ll ever know!)
Living in the land of resumes… one of those necessary evils.