Some days are more emotionally draining than others. The nature of what transpires during the course of an average workday may appear to be similar on the surface. Same tasks. Same timeframe. Same kind of interactions. Same types of stories. What alters the emotional context of one day to the next is what you bring to it. We alight on an seemingly ordinary weekday with a bag of sticky tricky worries, a list of MUST DO's, a whole set of emotions stretched and challenged by fatigue, or new energy..... by stress or by a wicked sense of wonderment.
Fueled by how we choose to see, hear, feel, touch, inhale, give and receive life in and around us, the day unfolds as it will. Even if we make our best attempt at looking through our lens with beauty, circumstances can throw us off course and quickly deplete our energy. Today was one of those kind of days. Rainy, slow shuffling pace, tired. No amount of caffeine could artificially boost me up beyond the rainy grey skies. My energy was perpetually damp and sluggish. My feelings were easily tipped. To say that its very difficult to work in a counselling environment on days when you're not at your best is understating the obvious. Feelings and energy aside, you've got to rise to the needs, knowing that at the end of the day, you won't have much left in the reserves.
I recently met with a Spirit Guide who amazed and astounded me with the "messages" he passed onto me through the "angels" who have been hanging out around me all my life. The messages were bang on accurate that I have yet to really process the whole experience. However, one of the comments made (and this guy had no idea I was a counsellor or a writer OR had a strong desire to alter my career path from counselling to writing/facilitating and he hit on all three over and over again!) was that I have recently lost the ability to let go of the emotional spillage of others.... that it is seeping under my skin more readily than it used to. He warned me to be more aware of this..... that if I was feeling sad or drained it was more than likely not my own "stuff" I was reacting to. Rather, it had more to do with the feelings and stories others were sharing with me. He was right. I realized that today as I kept attempting to find the balance in myself and failing at it.
I am certainly more focused than I was a few months back and am capable of performing my job, but there is a residual sense of vulnerability that gets tweaked too frequently/rapidly than it used to. A transference of emotions happens quickly, like my empathy valve is open too wide. It has made me really question whether the time is ripe to seriously take some formal steps towards a new career. I don't feel burnt out from counselling. I still love it. I love the connections and I know I'm just as effective. My focus is sharp when someone needs me. Uber focused even. Its just that I'm in a different frame of mind. I've changed. The shift has happened. Vulnerability is a raw place to be, but it isn't a bad place to be. It is where creativity dwells. I want that opportunity to dwell there........ to create. The timing may be right now.
I write this tonight........ after going for a walk with my dog. It is still raining. Most of the snow has melted away. The street was dark save for a few lights along the abandoned gardens in my neighbours' yards. I shuffled along thinking......reflecting on the day, trying to figure out why the blues grabbed hold of my soul when in fact it should be the opposite. And I remembered what the Spirit Guide told me. I am harbouring the emotions and stories of others, allowing them to weigh me down.
However, as I turned around to walk back up the street, my eyes gravitated to the lonely streetlight that happens to be on the edge of my front lawn. It's rays shone through the leafless trees, and touched upon the hydro wires and telephone lines leaving the rainsoaked limbs and lines glistening The light and water droplets formed a large web filled with diamond sparkles. Silent light to catch whatever worries, fatigue, frets, feelings you want to toss into it.
I stood just below the big tree on my front lawn....... the one that captured the streetlight strength the most and was left in awe of its beauty..... nature touched by manmade light. Then, I threw my thoughts and feelings UP into its magical web. A nighttime dreamy web....... and let go of what I truly can't control and let them attach to the light sparkles in the trees.
And here I am now........ still tired, but lighter. Still wondering whether I am ready to let go of my original calling I have honed and loved dearly and step into the wilderness of something brand new........... Interesting times. Interesting thoughts on a rainy December night full of glistening webs of diamond sparkled limbs. I LOVE the last vestiges of the evening before bedtime. For some reason, resolutions feel so much more gratifying.
Tonight's photo theme is Night. For more photos and interpretations, check out Carmi's blog.