off the mountain

the me today feels like a completely different person from the me a few weeks ago, and today i am grateful. spent much time worrying, stressing out, complaining and being just very negative, but thank God, thank God for bringing me through. In these 10 weeks I learnt patience and acceptance. I learnt that our judgments of others are never accurate – there is always another layer waiting to be peeled. I learnt about myself, about the things i can and cannot accept, about what gets to me and what makes my soul feel alive. I learnt to reflect, and not react. I learnt that a multi-disciplinary team sounds nice and ideal, but in reality, a good team with passionate individuals from different professional backgrounds = heated discussions, dilemmas, tension, and frustration (but i still believe they are useful and needed). I learnt to be grounded, and learnt that it is not only the ‘doing’ that is meaningful. I learnt to be thick skinned, and not to take rejection personally. I learnt that people will always ask what social work is about and what i am doing, but at this moment i still cannot and am unwilling to give an answer that will help another understand. I learnt to depend on God at work, learnt to place what really matters to me in His hands, and learnt to seek only His approval. I learnt about death, acceptance, illness.. and about the strength of the human spirit. I learnt the importance of processing and looking inward constantly and intentionally, and learnt that the journey of becoming and discovering has to be done alone sometimes. I learnt that there are no right answers and no right methods, and the ability to accept uncertainty and imperfection will help in this journey. I think this setting was confusing for a student still learning about the profession, but this also made it even more important to hold onto social work values and ethics. And at the end of the day, it doesnt matter if you are accepted or liked, respected or remembered. It is worth it when you see increased quality of life in another, and worth it when you see change in another. but as we all know, life is messy and change is both hard and slow. even if these all do not happen, it is still worth it. like this thing sw shared:

you will see people at their worst
and their best
you will never cease to be amazed
at people’s capacity for
love, courage, and endurance
you will see life begin

and it is these small moments that make the journey.

my sup said today that “things can be different because of us”, and i think it is true. although i have also learnt that we are limited and can only do so little, i do believe we can do something.

and there is no shame in vulnerability,
no shame in failure and in making mistakes
there is no shame in being content, in being ok with who you are and where you are at this moment
there is no shame in feeling ‘not there yet’, or lost, or discouraged, or alone

‘and miles to go before i sleep’

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