Woah baby I am tired!
Today was very long- again! But wonderful.
Work was not the most productive today...though I did have a really wonderful heart to heart with a youth that has been able to move me in a special way after I found out she was making death threats to another resident. We spoke- well, really I spoke to her kind heart and it listened and she left smiling and better prepared for aggressors. It was nice.
I also sat for about an hour and read letters (one of the girls gave me a stack and told me to read them) from her 'fiance' who is currently incarcerated. It was so strange to read the things he said to her- and I totally understand why this 19 year old thinks she wants to marry this kid. He is very aware, he is not lacking depth for someone who grew up in a culture lacking it. But he is in prison, for assault...he is a crip (though his brother is a blood? and it does not interfere with their relationship)...and kept telling her that even if he spent his days out doing his business, referring to the involvement in these very destructive activities....that he would come home to her everyday. He promised. And that he wants her to be his only wife, the only mother of his children. And this girl...is seeing his potential, the wisdom he does seem to contain and is ready to hand her life over to him. Maybe he turns out to be the best guy in the world...or the worst. It doesn't really matter. It is the fact that while I read his letters I could see a kid searching for love. In her eyes and her laughter I could see a kid searching for love. In myself I see a kid searching for love. And these kids I work with they are so broken their whole childhood and unloved that they end up finding love in the wrong places.
And then my first client came into my office and told me that she would like to leave to go and move in with her *older* girlfriend and girlfriend's 5 year old child. This youth has been destroyed and broken her whole life. It is miraculous that she is still here...and she is making so much progress, she is so strong and resilient. Now she wants to hand her fate, he success over to a relationship...at 19. I know I am only 22 and learning my own lessons....but...we just sat together and talked. And she said she values my advice but will still end up doing what she wants to. And I told her exactly what I thought- that I would be happy for her, but that I will worry and that I think that she should wait to leave on her own terms, for herself not someone else. And then we both just had a moment. And we agreed that we would both pray for her to know what the right choice for her is. And I told her I will care for her regardless, and I will hope that this woman does not hurt her as everyone else in her life has...and that I believe in her so much she might never even realize. It was a hard conversation- to see a youth I love so much risk all this progress and potential on love. And I am a hopeless romantic...but also a realist. And I don't want to see her get hurt. And I know she doesn't love herself. It is very hard...
I will let you all know how that works out.
After work I laid out by the pool and just re-centered myself.
And then I got in some valuable Ali time = ). She took me to her Pentecostal church, which was an eye opener. Interesting place. I learned a lot about the proverbs...and am now in search of my bible to match the notes that I took up to the passages and see what I think. We discuss...ooh I can't remember I will let you know when I am not too tired and sore to get up and find the paper...the proverb about soft words removing anger from the angry. I paraphrase poorly but still...I was happy to hear that. To see that my soft, gentle nature with the youth instead of being abrasive might really be exactly what they need.
I will probably talk more about the church tomorrow when I am not so sleepy.
Then we went to the gym...oh my word. She is the best trainer ever. She kicked my butt- I can barely move! But it was good. We bonded and that makes almost anything worthwhile.
I returned home and took and wonderful candlelit, indie shower and am so, so ready for bed. Tomorrow there is work all day...then helping Ali pack? followed by belly dancing and perhaps Miss Genesis's church?! Another busy one! And Friday is Disney with Brian and his wonderful parents! And this weekend...so much going on! I don't know when I got so busy.
Oh. And for the record, yes the record because I am excited about this...I got in touch with a counselor today and should be starting asap. I am very thankful for the opportunity.
Oooh, and there was a woman at the church we went to who sat and held my hands and prayed for me to figure out what I should be doing, who I should be coming...what I should be believing. I very much appreciated it. She was kind and made me feel loved.
I am way too sleepy for this.
I am going to sleep now.
I am leaving you all with a song that I feel strongly about today. Very strongly:
I hope you get something from it.
Today I am Thankful For:
my growth. I am growing so much by the second- my muscles, my heart, my mind, my understanding....my tolerance....my patience. Everything. It is wonderful. Oh, and I am thankful for all the support arriving when I need it most.