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Debby's UK Work Experience

Those who know me know how laid back I am, in most areas of my life, even work. For my background, I’m going to go way back…. Growing up, both my parents had busy careers as doctors and for most of my childhood, they were absent. Perhaps this was why I wasn’t particularly keen on going above and beyond my capabilities, or perhaps it was a rebellious spirit just trying to be oppositional to what they wanted for me. Whenever people asked me what I wanted to be when I was younger, I would always say “housewife” much to my mother’s annoyance.

After leaving school, I got pregnant and married and had to find something to study to get into employment. That’s how I came to do Accounting, it was a job I did for the pay but something I had no passion for. In between school and work, I also volunteered at my son’s Kindergarten. He was taught by my namesake, Debby Mue, a passionate, God fearing woman who loved God, Fiji, the environment and teaching children about them. She taught me that doing what you love was more meaningful than doing something for more money. She was also a great encourager for me when I found myself also working with children.

In July 2009, my son and I moved to Germany to join my husband. Living “overseas” for the first time wasn’t what I thought it would be, especially being in a non-English speaking country and having everything concerning our lives based in a small British Army camp. Anyway, in November 2010, I got my first job in Germany as a Key Worker in a children’s nursery. I did that for about 10 months before becoming a Teaching Assistant at one of the Primary Schools on camp. We moved to Scotland in 2015, and I was blessed to have secured a job in the same role before we moved across. So I have been supporting children’s learning for the past 11 years. It is a role that I never thought of doing, but it is a role that I believe God fashioned me for. I can say that now because I realise that I have been blessed with the patience, temperament and a love for helping children learn.

Some of the setbacks I encountered in my career were self-doubt, always sabotaging myself with thoughts of failure, which would prevent me from even applying for jobs. Another setback is sometimes my ‘Fiji’ accent, I cannot even try to slang or change my accent at work. What you hear is what you get and my husband likes to poke fun at this sometimes. On some occasions, I can hear the children I work with speaking with a slight Fiji accent especially when we’re learning phonics, this always puts a smile on my face. My accent also made some people think that I didn’t have much to contribute during work discussions, and there was one person who sounded surprised that I actually knew what I was talking about. Other than that one person, I have had great working relationships with all my colleagues.

I have always been one to bring my whole self to work. Maybe because it’s the nature of my job, I have to be friendly and approachable when working with children. And having grown in my Faith, everything I have learnt in my walk with Christ has just helped me in doing a better job of this.

I’m hoping to share a different perspective of the ‘work’ journey experience. The realisation that, sometimes, where we have found ourselves working is where we have been purposely placed.

Vinaka, Debby x

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