Posted by: soulshinemoments | September 19, 2013

“Be like the bird, pausing in its flight On limb too slight, Feels it give way, yet sings, Knowing it has wings.” -Victor Hugo

A group of six or so of us were sitting in the graduate lounge before class on Tuesday. We found ourselves on the topic of death and dying which began this intense, profound conversation about spirituality.

One of the girls, C., said, “I just couldn’t do hospice social work. That seems too hard. I think because I haven’t come to terms with my own death and dying. Like, what happens when its all over? I’m just not sure if I believe there is a God or whatever and it makes thinking about death really difficult.”

K., one of the other girls in our cohort who works at a hospice facility (and has been employed by one for two years) spoke up. “I think that working at hospice has made me more spiritual because I have had to come to terms with death and dying and that we are spiritual beings. I’ve also witnessed patients in their final moments which has given me hope that there is something more out there. I had this one patients who called out in jubulation, while reaching her hands above her head and chest saying, ‘I’m ready!’ as if she was talking to someone else, and then passed away right in front of me. It’s stuff like that which makes me believe there is something else out there.”

We then all started talking about what makes good social workers. Rinny commented saying that perhaps C. might want to explore her feelings about death and dying and spirituality more. Rinny finds that when she feels she is being the most capable social worker is when she is working on her own self-improvement, whatever that may be. She said that to be competent social workers, she really felt that she needed to “walk the walk” and constantly be working on her self and her own issues as she helps her clients work on their issues.

I thought that was brilliant. She’s so right. It all goes back to having self-care and self-love, too. After her comment, I have been brain storming more ways for self-care in regards to mental health. One of the aspects I really want to pursue is Group Therapy. I keep hearing how beneficial it is and want to find out for myself. I googled, “Therapy Groups ______ County” and found five pages worth of groups. Now the trick is narrowing it down. I found one that sounded especially interesting and it was Yoga for Trauma/Body Dissociation”. I don’t feel I am a trauma victim, but I would love to learn how to be able to help others in this way. I’m going to try to work up the courage to contact the Therapist to see what it’s all about.

Last night after my somewhat challenging day at hospice, Jack sent me a text asking me if I would be up for a quick bite and beer at a local restaurant where one of his friend’s was performing music. It sounded like a great idea. I needed a break from the death and dying stuff I’ve been mentally and emotionally processing on both a work and personal level. Being social and listening to music sounded like a wonderful idea. Ariel had church last night, so we just took Jackson and stayed for a couple of hours, but I was so grateful to be able to hang and relax with some really nice people.

I’ve been thinking about how much my grandfather genuinely loved people, how dynamic he was, how he was so good at going with the flow, nonjudgmentally, and fitting in with any type of crowd or cliche. I feel like I have some of these personality traits too (when I am not stressed out to the max with other life issues) and I want to continue to develop these characteristics in myself more. I want to better be able to enjoy life and people even more.

May You Live Every Single Day of Your Life!

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