Today my heart overflows. I love my work. I am filled with joy and gratitude. There is nothing--nothing--like being with people in the most real way possible. It opens my heart up and creates this sense of peace and rightness with the world. That said, I bear witness to a lot—the lowest of lows and the baby steps and sometimes even the highest of highs. It makes me realize how wide and deep life is. There is so much we experience as human beings. There can be such pain, turmoil, discord, strife mixed along with such happiness, pleasure, success, hope. And all of it makes us human. All of it is real and part of what it means to be alive. Getting to see that and honor it up close with my clients is the BEST thing.
I hate small talk. Soooo much, do I hate small talk. Obviously, I can do it. We learn, don’t we? But it tires me. It is effortful. It’s a necessary evil—like going to the dentist. (Have I mentioned I HATE going to the dentist? No offense to my dentist. He’s a perfectly nice man, but having my teeth scraped on and prodded does not bring me joy, especially not when he’s trying to be friendly and make chitchat while there are metal instruments in my mouth.) It’s probably no surprise then that I picked a profession that is so not about the small talk. Yes, sometimes it’s important to gently ease into the deeper conversation or sometimes it just gives us something to chat about in the hallway before entering the confidential space of my office.
But, the real work is so much more.
It’s deep and intriguing. Therapy is all about going deeper and seeking understanding and shifting and tweaking and making change. None of that can happen unless we get real and vulnerable. Therapy satisfies my natural curiosity and my love of learning. I get to be curious about my clients, and they get to become curious about themselves. That curiosity leads us to all sorts of mysteries and then to the origins of those mysteries.
It’s fascinating work. I’m an archaeologist (I have total respect for how hard your jobs are.). I’m also a teacher or a coach or a biggest fan or an honest mentor. I get to play so many roles, and each time a client trusts me enough to share their story with me, I get to live a different life. I’m right there in the midst of it with my client. They don’t have to be alone. They step into therapy, and I get to be on their team. I LOVE that! It is the most beautiful and rewarding work I can ever imagine. Sure, it can also be the most difficult work. But, I think the highs and lows of it are part of what makes being a therapist so meaningful. No time for bull shit here. We get to the core of it. And that is the best work I can ever imagine doing. (Then again, am I an HSP or am I an HSP? We’re not usually wired to do meaningless things.)
As I once heard a trusted colleague say—being a therapist makes me a better person. Amen to that! I’m holding such gratitude in my heart today for my current, past and future clients who bravely invite me into their worlds and for the community I get to serve. Thank you.