Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Lady Luck

Cat-eye sunnies from Ray-Ban

convertible Chanel from the Trend Bureau 

I surprised my friends by wearing a bright color today! Combining it with a lot of gold felt a little too festive for me but I just went for it. Decided to leave the usual knuckle rings and bracelets at home to avoid looking like a Christmas tree...

This is what I wore to the Nixon FW2012 press launch at Big Bad Wolf a while ago... Thanks to Cheyser for taking my photos! 

Pretty sure the way I feel right now can be likened to the feeling you get when you've just won the lottery. I passed the board exam for Interior Design, guys! I doubted myself so many times. I felt hopeless during the last week before exams. I was cramming and I felt like I wasted so much of my "review time" for going out. A lot of people couldn't even believe that I could still afford to party, do gigs, go to events, etc. I may have looked like I was confident but I honestly felt so scared. I just kept delaying studying since I really CAN'T (for the life of me) memorize and make reviewers like most diligent students. I have no idea how I managed to go through my entire life getting lucky with grades... This is why I am always so thankful because the Lord is always so good to me!!! I just kept praying. I think I pray 20 times each day and that doubled during the month of the exam. 

Y'all should've seen what a nervous wreck I was. I developed allergies and was mindlessly scratching my arms/neck/face while reading my notes (my sister and dad just kept laughing at me), I would cry for hours and then laugh, I was so anti-social... I was going mental. The only way I could let out all the anxiety was to pray. I only attended about 30% of the hours for our reviews. I  never finished any of our design plates. I knew that I was going to finish during the exam since I work really well under pressure-- but I wasn't supposed to let that be my excuse for being lazy! I even told my parents to just expect me to fail. Looking at other students made me feel stupid since I wasn't studying as much. A lot of them were so serious and dedicated. 

The exam had 3 parts- the first day for design (HELL), the second and third days for 5 different subjects. Apart from the written/multiple choice, we also had to draw for the last few items of each subject. The whole time I had NO IDEA what I was doing. I finished 5 out of 6 boards during the first day (design day) but my concept was rubbish! I wrote it down while lining up to pass my work, while the others devoted at least 500 words for theirs! My only goal during the first day was to finish each board. During college I spent an entire day just to finish one perspective, but for the exam we were forced to finish 6 in 9 hours! I really wanted to cry after the first day, but I was too exhausted to even do that. Plus I knew I had to study for the next ones since I didn't get to study at all when I was supposed to. And wow, I am extremely lucky- most of the info I read the night prior to the exams were included! I even got to sleep during the 3rd day. The written parts were pretty easy for me thanks to cramming. Others will tell you to stop studying 3 days or a week before the exam, but I went for the KILLER approach. Don't do what I did. Your brain will hate you. 

I can't believe I even considered quitting so I could take it next year. Fear does a lot of things to you. This was the most traumatic exam of my life, just because I let fear get to me. A lot of those "Of course you'll do well!" comments put so much pressure on me, too. But now I'm glad it's all over. 

Here's some advice for other interior design students wanting to take the board exam:
  • Familiarize yourself with all the terms, because you CAN'T memorize them. Trust me, you just can't. Our reviewers were 8" thick (filled with WORDS), so good luck with that. 
  • Know the parts of.... things. Yeah, everything's important. (foundations of buildings, framing of houses, columns, etc.) Actually, all the building construction notes were useful. 
  • Practice speed drafting and speed rendering. Don't be a perfectionist or you will never finish. Save your best design ideas for your future clients. 
  • Prepare all your materials and buy new ones if you must. You can't borrow or talk to anyone during the exam. Everyone's going to be in a crazy state anyways, so you can only rely on yourself.
  • Bring food that's easy to eat. Crisps, sandwiches, cookies, fruits... 
  • PRAY. Even the ones who finish all their plates can fail. The smartest students also fail. This exam is about luck and I am the perfect example for that! Okay, I'm smart but I was obviously not prepared for this exam. 
IDr. Raleene Cabrera... I am getting used to the title already! Thank you so much to all those who pushed me to take the exam, and to those who prayed for me. Congrats to the other 171 Interior Designers who passed.. We are finally PROFESSIONALS! ;) 


Maria said...

Congratulations! You deserve it. :)

Raleene said...

Thanks, Maria! :)

Belle Lopez said...

Hi Ms. Raleene :)

I know it's sooo late...
But I want to congratulate you for passing the board exam.

May your luck be pass on to me as I take mine this weekend.

Congratulations Ms. Interior Designer :)

Open Book

Raleene said...

Thanks, Belle! Good luck, future civil engineer! ;)