mari4212: Text: Divide by Cucumber Error, Please Reinstall Universe and Reboot (cucumber)
[personal profile] mari4212
We're at the closing retreat for ESC Maryland, and we were given questions to reflect and journal on about transition and change.

For the most part, that's actually not what I'm interested in right now. For better or worse, my year here really ended when my worksite ended on Friday, and most of the transition and goodbye I had to give to this year was saying goodbye to people I've loved there who have supported me and made me better and happier and stronger than I was.

So perhaps what I need to do is to say thank you again. Thank you to TJ, who took a giant risk on me when she thought I'd never make the job work, who has not hesitated to say that she was wrong about me, and who praises me to my face and behind my back. Someone else at HRM said that TJ's biggest compliment about anyone is their work ethic, and she was always so willing to praise me for being a hard worker.

Thank you to W, who rejoiced in talking about the Philippines, who taught me and encouraged me and helped me figure out where to even start with working with the clients. Thank you to Kr, who was unstinting in expressing appreciation and praise, who taught and shared and gave me a different perspective. Thank you to H, for kindness and compassion, and for making our joint office comfortable and welcoming to both of us.

Thank you to Li, for your gentleness and insight, for giving me something useful to do my last day of work, for everything you brought in. Thank you to NB for your enthusiasm and your kindness and interest. Thank you to Ka, Le, and S for making walking into the shelter a place of welcome and for honest talk about residents. Thank you to E for leading contact center, for geeking out with me, for letting me know you trusted and respected my skills when I was still unsure. Thank you to Ha, He, Len, Su, both Marys, to everyone I worked with for our conversations and times supporting one another. Thank you to third floor potluck meals, to random bits of chocolate and advice, to compliments on hats and the game of trying to catch me on Argonne and drive me the rest of the way in.

Thank you in general for this year, for the chance to discover myself. I didn't really believe I could handle everything I was hearing and seeing this year until I was given the chance to do so. I didn't know I would witness tears and pain like this, see triumph and anger and joy and grief like this. Thank you that I could write a thousand more words of this and still have more to say, more to be grateful for.

At the beginning of this service year, I wrote up what I wanted to be and to do with my life, at least in terms of character. I wrote:

I want to live with compassion, wisdom, and humor. I want to be trustworthy and gentle. I want to live out love and faith. I want to understand how scary love and wisdom are, and to do it anyway.

I hope I've lived that out, I hope I will live up to that better as I go on.

But otherwise this year? I am so done. I want to be packed and out of the house and back home long enough to breath before I take the next step. Frankly at this point I also just want to know what actually is next.


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