After two years studying, I finally got my Cambridge English Advanced certificate – and I don’t have words to described how fulfilled I feel right now.
I took the exam in December, and the result was released yesterday in the morning. I was trembling when I accessed the information related to my inscription. I was afraid of bad news, but I succeeded: I scored 199, which gives me grade B. It’s just one point from reaching the C2 level, the known “mastery” of the language. I couldn’t believe my eyes. One point, come on, in practice, I’m already proficient!
As I wrote on my Facebook, people don’t have any idea about how important a certificate like this is for me. I started learning English quite late in life (well-off children study it when they are in the kindergarten) and it has been a struggle for so many years.
Apart from feeling that I could learn by myself at ease (after quitting a regular course), I wasn’t able to speak. I mean, I could a little, but it wasn’t enough for a real conversation, especially with someone with a good accent or a native speaker. That situation made me suffer so much.
Related to this, an episode is an emblematic point in my life. I still remember the evening when I met a friend of mine and some of her friends in a bar in Sao Paulo. There was a foreign person on the table with us, while the others were Brazilians. All of them could speak perfect English. They have lived abroad, they have travelled, studied the language for ages… On the other hand, I had no confidence to speak in front of them. My listening at that time was terrible too, and so nervous I was to speak in front of them. I gave an excuse and I went home. Inside, I was devastated and I did believe I couldn’t speak English during my life.
Until the day I went to Ireland, whose people helped me, since the beginning, to find out that my English was better than average, almost advanced. Honestly, I didn’t know that, and now I know I suffered for nothing. Quickly I received more and more praises, particularly from English speakers, who said my level was amazing, great and tremendous.
Having said that, my CAE is not just a certificate for me. It’s a certainty that I rose to the challenge and the best proof I could have to know that I need to trust myself.
Now CPE is just around the corner. I don’t know when, but I’ll get it.