A little dose of self-discovery during reflection
Do you really see me?
Me seeing me
As I served as chaplain for a populace that consisted of those suffering from mental illness this is a look at a reflection I did during my initial week at my site getting my feet wet. If you are looking into going into the CPE process or becoming a chaplain. This is some of the weekly self-reflection that you will be expected to do weekly. At this particular site I was nervous, a bite scared, and yet surprisingly open.Certain names have been changed to protect identify and confideniality. Here is a look at a weekly theological reflection.
1. What are you learning about yourself from your clinical setting this week? What I am learning from my site this week is the importance of community, connection, and back story and how it affects our present and possible future.
2. What encounters stick out to you and why? The encounters that stick out to me most are the encounter with Frank's mother and learning his back story and her strength and resilience was encouraging. Because it affirmed for me the strength of God and God’s presence being a beacon to us even if we cant see it for ourselves.
3. What are you learning about out yourself from your peer interactions this week? Any concerns? I have no concerns but I am learning that I have a hard time accepting limits because I feel it makes me look like a quitter or like I am weak or give up easily. Lucy taught me that I am definitely working through my loss of child. I learned that I was in a dark place and I know my boundaries and just not willing to go back there. I am moving forward, healing, and proud of myself.
4. What are you learning about God from your clinical setting and peer interactions this week? I am learning God is present even if I do not see it or feel it. Its like a reminder. Also there is strength in numbers and the greater possibility for solution and possible outcomes.
5. Any supervisory questions or concerns? NO! I am just so eager and I am happy where I am and just can’t wait until next Tuesday so to speak.
6. How are you working towards your learning goals? I think I am working towards my goals of defining my inner strengths and weaknesses and reaffirming to myself what they are and now they play a role in my ministry and pastoral identity. I want to push others to succeed and strive more because it is innately within me from the age of five until now. I realize that and I am conscious of it, so that I stay with them presently wherever that may be.
In conclusion I want to display some of their artwork in keeping a promise I made to them about putting their art on display. I worked with many of them using art therapy and other techniques to discuss their experiences. One thing I learned from my encounter with those labeled mental illness was the essence of beauty and deeper understanding of the strength and power of overcoming odds.