Today was a good day. My energy is returning, with the help of 3 iron pills a day, and I have inexplicably acquired three new part time gigs. I am going to be co-writing a column for a local online newspaper, co-facilitating a group for children whose siblings have a disability, and co-working with visiting nurses to provide services for elderly clients.
When I was 24, I was the director of a rape crisis center. I carried the back-up beeper 24/7 and made many a visit to local hospitals in the middle of the night to provide support to women (and men) who had been brutally violated. I was young enough and arrogant enough to do much of the work on my own, I didn't want to burden our volunteers with those tough late night calls.
When I was 33, I started having nightmares about some of those visits. I dreamed that I was being chased down a deserted hospital ward and all the doors clanged shut. I would often wake up screaming. I now know that is called "secondary traumatization" and is quite common for first responders and clinicians who work with trauma survivors. I worked through a lot of it with my own therapist.
Now, in my 40's I have been liberated from the idea that I need to do any of this work in a vacuum. In the various schools I have worked in, I have been part of a multi-disciplinary team that looks at a student from many different perspectives. All those different viewpoints ultimately provide more clarity.
So I want to shout out to all my most fabulous co-people: I will not do it anymore without you. I need your wisdom, your perspective, your humor, your creativity, and your strength. I need to be reigned in, applauded, encouraged, reigned in a bit more, and honored. I will do the same for you.
Today was a good day.