Monday, October 24, 2011

First post after a month at work

Where have I been you ask?

It's been about 1 month since I've started at my new workplace. In summary... I'm on a ridiculously steep learning curve.

I've had 1 traumatic event, which happened to be my first ever case done as an employee. That sure was scarring, but I learnt valuable lessons: to not be intimidated, to find ways out from being cornered to give solutions.

And then though i had expressed reservations about working with a certain population of folks, i'm now working with them and I must say they are generally a delightful bunch once you can engage them.

There have been times that i mentally try to plan an escape route for myself... I entertain strange thoughts like running away to work in a cafe, run away to be employed in something less taxing on the social front... Things like that. Because things can get so hard. In the initial weeks, I was really shaking in my shoes, worried that I'll be assigned a counselee. I felt like I wasn't ready, I felt indescribably anxious. I was a wreck behind my desk. Stressed, worried, desperately praying, fearful, feeling inadequate. You name it.

To some extent, my anxiety has lessened... and I'm not sure if it's because my self psycho-ing is working or whether it's because I'm suppressing my fear. I've written out all the words of encouragement and prayer that people have given me and stuck them on my cubicle walls. I read them and meditate on them when I'm afraid. I have to constantly tell myself that I want to love my job, i'm just here to help, I'm just here to love, just here to be human to another human being. I want my life's purpose to be in sync with my job, and I want to see it as part of my life and not separate.

I knew this was a journey with the Lord, my choices have all along been made with the intention of following the Lord's guidance. I also knew that this wasn't an easy path to take, but I know that the Lord has meant for me to be here, right now. That's the thing that gives me the assurance to carry on and to carry on in good faith that He will protect me and lead me through no matter what.

I know that it's not an easy path to take because i began with the understanding that it's part of God's plan to mould me. And as we all know, a moulding and refining process is never easy. Hence the struggling. I'm faced with my personal fears every day. Which would explain my heightened levels of anxiety.

Yet looking back, i think i've come some way. About 2 years ago, i was way more anxious. While I waited for a student to walk in for counselling, I was in a state of near panic. I would be getting sweaty palms, elevated heart rate, racing thoughts. I remember jumping in my seat every time i heard the sound of the lift landing at the floor I was on.

I don't feel that kind of panic now, but i do still feel pretty stressed. So i take the time to examine my thoughts and try to plant more helpful thoughts in my head to stop myself from over thinking and reacting.

So yeah. This has been the state of affairs. Some might think i'm being too hard on myself. Maybe I am. I guess it's because i just don't want to hurt anyone. I just want to get better at what i do so that I would be able to bring more help than confusion.

Lord. Let me know that You are near. That I'm never alone in that counselling room. You are the greatest counsellor who ever lived and who still lives. Help me to love your people just like you do, and attend to their deepest needs wherever they are at. Help me to grow and mature, and to sharpen my skills so that I can help bring light to what has been in darkness. I'm determined to walk through this because you have ordained this so. Lord, have your way! In Jesus's precious name I pray, Amen.