Kaitlin had an appointment this afternoon so I figured what better time to start reading my book for work the entire staff is reading a book on trauma stewardship – it’s our own little book club I mean lets be serious between the sounds of three kidlets, a dog, a husband, at least one of three TV’s on, along with all of the other sounds and distractions that come and go from this place I didn’t think I was going to have much time tonight to read when I got home.
I have to be honest, just from reading the back of the book I thought … This will be a book that is filled with good to know information. I didn’t really think I would get much out of it my boss may see this, but I am being honest. I thought it would provide me with a lot of information on how to better train my volunteers. For those of you reading this blog who do not know me personally or what I do professionally … I am the volunteer program coordinator for a non profit agency that advocates and offers many programs and services for victims & survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault.
As I sat in the cold and quiet waiting room it made it really easy to concentrate on the material I was reading. Just reading the forward really got me thinking and also realizing that maybe I was too quick to judge what I may or may not get out of it. I kept my notebook right next to me just in case there was anything that really stuck out to me. Needless to say within the 30 minutes I was reading I had a lot that stuck out to me. Not just relating to my job and how to better train volunteers, but also how my job is really effecting me personally, professionally, physically, mentally and emotionally.
The author, like myself went into her job with a “burning passion and commitment” but it’s true, no matter how much heart, commitment and passion you have this job will take a toll on you. My job may be supervising volunteers, but the things I see and hear on a daily basis are not easy to deal with. Yet the reasons I love the field I work in & I love my job have always and still do outweigh the negatives that also come along with.
In the beginning of this book, the author is talking about being on an amazing vacation with her family in the caribbean. They were hiking to the top of some cliffs, she automatically could not enjoy the breath taking views or the time she was spending with her family because her mind was racing with so many thoughts, what ifs. I won’t give the book away, because it is reading it for yourself. I instantly felt like she was describing me and what I feel on a daily basis.
Too often I am not able to just breathe & enjoy the moment, especially moments with my family. Way too often I let past experiences and fears get in the way. I was that way before I took this position just ask my husband but I think things have gotten to a whole other level since I have taken this position. One thing that the author said that really stuck out to me was “find a way to bear witness to trauma without surrendering your ability to live fully”. I need to find a balance between hearing and seeing some very difficult things and not letting it paralyze me in fear or what ifs. I think there have been too many times where I have let my job or the effects of my job effect almost every area of my life.
Sometimes I get so wrapped up in work that I forget what I need. I need to find a balance & not let it or anything else take away from my family, friends & what I need to do to take care of me. The author said the same thing is very common when taking care and providing for someone with special needs or a health issue. I felt like a light bulb went off in my head! It’s so true, I get so lost in what Aiden needs, his routine/schedule, food allergies & dietary needs, speech and OT appointments that I forget I have three other people who constantly need my attention too. I have two other people who need my help with homework, want to fill me in on every detail of their day from what one made at preschool to what the other one is studying for her science test tomorrow. Then there is my relationship with Adam. I feel like
sometimes frequently we forget about each other’s needs & sometimes the only time we really spend with each other is as our heads hit the pillows. We have been trying to spend more time just the two of us, but again it’s finding time to do it.
I think my biggest goal in 2012 is going to be to find a balance in all of the craziness I call my everyday life. It’s going to take a lot of patience, love & possibly a miracle and therapy but hopefully one day very soon I will find a balance that works for me.