I had the duty to write a bio about myself this week for a work opportunity. It's quite the experience, isn't it? I really felt like I should have said, "I make mistakes every day and wish I was better at keeping up on paperwork". Instead I said, "l consider it a great honour to have been invited to that program." My true bio would talk about being human and having discouraged days and wishing I could take back words I spoke. But it is good to also remember the encouraging, perspective-changing days and the times that I made a positive difference for someone.
It is an interesting and valuable thing to look back on one's life, and I find myself doing that often lately as I transition to a new phase of my work life and write things like bios and resumes and websites. :) Did I focus on what matters? Did I empower more than enable? Did I collaborate more than compete? Sometimes yes, sometimes no. I'm think I'm good with that - at least I'm better with it than I used to be. I've been working on that lately - living with the successes and mistakes, living in the now and being OK with imperfection and vulnerability and forgiving myself for my past.
Writing a bio makes me think of things I want to improve, but it also reminds me of how very many things I have experienced that I am SO grateful for. I've had some great supervisors and colleagues along the way, and some great colleagues that collaborated with me and empowered me as I grew as a clinician and learned about ways to intersect my personality with my profession. I've had some discouraged days in the last few years where I was ready to leave my career behind. I should have written a bio on those days, as I think it would have renewed my hope and reminded me that seasons don't last forever.
Do you need some hope and perspective in your work life these days? Maybe write a bio! And remember that life is all about seasons that change and have beauty at some level even in the dark days.
Bonnie Baxter began her career as a Speech Language Pathologist in a small town in Alberta after graduating from...
Life is full of the push and pull...the pros and cons...the positives and the challenges...the arriving and the leaving.
I had some good reminders today about why this private practice is an excellent idea right now at this point in my life. I was wanting to do some wrap-up work outside of regular work hours and was strongly discouraged from doing so by my supervisor, which is understandable given some of the parameters she has to work with. But, it's going to be great when I can do my report writing and creative work in my creative hours, from about 9-midnight. :) In the meantime, I'm working like a hound dog when I'm at work, trying to get everything wrapped up well before I go...not many days left!
I also am going through that agonizing 'leaving' process. Parts of it are quite freeing and my joy helps with the sadness. But other parts are just sad, no other way to look at it. I have met some amazing clients in the last few years. Like, to be really honest, I sort of love them, and if life took that path I would even consider adopting a couple of them. Thankfully they're in happy homes with people who love them and advocate on their behalf. :) So I can joke all I want. But I will really truly miss those students, especially the AAC ones - the ones who have no words but whose eyes light up when I come in the room and who show me with their laborious yes/no answers that they have a lot to say. Oy, I'm going to make myself cry here. It has been powerful and really magical work that I've been so honored to do. It really is an honor, even though I have stumbled through so much of it and made many mistakes. I won't name them here of course, but I will carry them in my heart and hope that our paths cross again in the future. I didn't do any of this to get away from them, as they gave my work life meaning. I am seeing the last of those clients this week, so I'm just feeling kind of melancholy about that.
I'm going to miss having coworkers as well, I do know this. I am going to have to work to create professional community around me I think, and find new ways to connect, as connecting is really important to me (thus the name of my practice!). I know many of them will be my friends after I'm done, but it isn't the same as getting to work together, and I'll miss that a lot! We live in a pretty 'small town' city, so I know our paths will cross lots, it will just be in a different way.
So now, I continue the leaving part - packing up, writing notes and lists and having transition meetings. It's good to embrace the leaving, even as you reach forward to the arriving.