Wednesday, December 27, 2006

The Best Christmas Present Ever

Hello eveyone! I hope you all had a wonderful New Years celebration. I had a very interesting new years and I thought I'd share. I've been meaning to blog about my experiences working with a domestic violence shelter as well, and since I spent new years at the shelter I'll be able to kill two birds with one stone.

So, I've been volunteering with a domestic violence shelter since the beginning of 2006 doing child care. When Jay left on deployment I found myself very sad on the weekends and started looking for something to keep me busy. Well, come to find out the shelter was looking for Resident Care Managers (aka dorm mothers) :-) to work on the weekends. So about the first of November I started working Saturday and Sunday mornings 7:30am to 4:00pm.

I'll be truthful. It took me a few weeks to adjust to working 7 days a week. But now I'm totally in the groove and experience very few problems with the schedule. Sometimes I get tired but I try my hardest not to complain since it is my choice to work this much and I know that having all that time to think about how much I miss Jay would be way harder! This weekend was especially wonderful. Some of the full time staff wanted some time off and were granted that time off before replacements were found to cover their shifts. So, I picked up two extra shifts over the three day weekend and worked both the morning of New Years Eve as well as the overnight.

I love my job! Saturday afternoon I had been watching one of my kids so his mom could get some rest. He is just facinated with my phone and could open and close it for hours. (note: if I have your cell number and you get a strange call on the weekend and no ones there but you hear me saying, "no honey lets not call anyone!" now you'll know what's going on.) ;-) He loves the way it lights up when he opens it. So at one point I reached up to grab my phone and it was all sticky and covered in that syrup that canned peaches come in. I knew exactly what had happened since it was also in my hair on all over me. The funniest part is... it couldn't have made me more happy. I love these kids! I love these women! I feel so privlidged to be a part of their lives. And going home at night knowing I've played a small role in their recovery is nothing short of addictive! I've been friends with people throughout my lifetime that were survivors of domestive violence. I think of them each and every day that I'm there. I try to be the person I would have wanted them to have in their life. Someone who would do everything they can to help this woman and her family. Someone who will help them see their potention, who will hold up a mirror for them on their blackest days and say, "but look how much you've accomplished! Look at the life you are creating for youself and your children!" Which brings me to New Years.

At first I was thinking that there would be a big "ball dropping watching party" in the TV room, but most of the kids are fairly young and had already knocked out when I got there at 11pm (how I was even awake at that time of night was a miracle due only to a heavy dose of caffee). The mom's were still awake but I hadn't realized that watching the ball drop in NYC on a three hour tape delay is kind of...well...not as exciting as watching it live. So, no one was really up for that. By 11:45pm I was in the RCM office with the door closed because I didn't think anything was going on. Being the life of the party that I am, I had an old Sex in the City re-run on while I was tallying some stat sheets. I actually didn't even notice when the year rolled over until someone knocked on the door. It was one of my ladies and she was simply there to wish me a happy new year.

I almost cried! I got up from my chair and we hugged. At which point I realized that almost all of the women were standing outside the door. We all hugged and wished each other a happy new year. I told them that I hoped that this would be the best year yet! And they all agreed they were glad to see 2006 go! I had most definitely not expected to feel this way, but at that moment (with my guy being on deployment) there was nowhere else I'd have rather been.

And at that moment I realized how glad I was to see 2006 go. 2007 will absolutely turn out to be the best year yet, but it's only due to the fact that 2006 was the hardest of my life. It was so nice to have what almost felt like closure. The bad times in my life are over. The years of having jobs I hated, not enough money to survive and an unfulfilling, unsupportive relationship are OVER! I know have a career passion in life and the determination to see it come to be... I'm at a place where I can make enough money to live on, as well as learned how to live within my means (more or less) :-)... I have learned enough about myself to have identified who my soulmate is... and I truly believe that together we can make this relationship work.

My new years wish for each of you is to have the wisdom and vision to know what you need to do in order to be truly happy, and the strength and courage to then make it happen.

2007...I'm so glad you're here! Cheers, to the best year yet!