decisions, decisions part 2
I recently purchased this book, and it has been everything I have needed lately. The author is an INFJ herself, and in this book she explains what it means to be an empathic INFJ, techniques to apply to everyday living, and how to help you cope when life feels overwhelming. And much much more!
Sometimes I get confused. Is this me being depressed? Is this a chemical imbalance? Or is this just my empathic self who overwhelms easily in this fast paced world?
This book has been a little friend of mine, and a little toolkit to remind me what I need, and what I already have.
In my last post I wrote about overwhelming feelings I was having, and difficult decision-making.
I can now share that I have been accepted, and offered a position with City Year Orlando.
I am proud to have been offered a position in being a part of the AmeriCorps and the wonderful impact they make each year.
At the same time, it is a lot to think about.
If I accept the position, I will leave this July for Orlando. I will be finding roommates, a place to live for the year, and then begin training. Once the school year begins I will be commuting each morning to serve students in an Orlando city school. It will be long days, and hard work, and all worthwhile in the end. I will have holidays off, but ultimately will be in Orlando until I graduate the service year June 2018. With that, I will be taking a gap year, a service year. I have never taken a year off of classes, and though I know a lot of people do, it scares me. I like being on track. I know what I want to do, I know what classes I need to take, and I plan on receiving a degree in 2020 so I can go to grad school.
City Year will be an amazing experience- especially for me wanting to be a social worker. I know I will be challenged, and will grow from the experience.
But, of course, I am also feeling stuck. I see the pros and cons, and I have no gut feeling in either direction of my options. I am overthinking, yes, but I also have never had to make a decision like this before. The distance doesn't scare me. I chose Orlando as my top choice location. If accepted, I wanted to get as much out of it as I possibly could, and I want to experience living somewhere new.
I am scared I will have anxiety attacks, and that I'll want to come home. I am not a quitter. I have reached milestones this past year, but I still overwhelm easily with social phobia, and I do not appear outgoing and in-charge off the bat. City Year will help me become a leader, but the process to get there- scares me. I have made close friendships this year, I have supports when I need them, and I guess it scares me to have a year without those people by my side. I logically know I can do it, but the unknown is scary. Life is full of change and the unknowns and I am aware this will not be the last time I will ever feel this "stuck" with a choice.
My other option:
Continue my courses next year, (maybe) study abroad Spring 2018 or Summer 2018. I will still have counseling each week or every other week with a new counselor. (I don't know who yet)
I was also offered a position with the Samaritans after my interview. By next school year I can be volunteering with them (with training first) to be a part of their crisis-call/text center.
ALSO a good experience for someone who wants to be a social worker, and wants to do something to contribute to suicide prevention.
I am lucky to have been placed in Intro to Social Work my first year. I have gotten the ball rolling and that means next year I can really dive into my major. If I take a year off, I am putting all that on hold.
Last week I was, how to I put this- a mess. I am better now, but I have been moving forward and once I think back to making a decision I will probably panic again.
I have papers galore coming for the end of the semester, and with that I have been personal-writing less and less. This isn't a problem "for my blog" but a problem for me, who writes as a coping mechanism.
WITH THAT: I am committing to scheduled posts from now on. I may write other days of the week too, (like right now, Sunday) but I will always promise a post on a Wednesday short or long, informative, or venting- depending on the week.
my attempt at making this official and expressing my love for my new plant socks.
I have so many different routes I could be taking, and yet, I am overwhelmed having to choose one.
I want experience. I want to travel, get new perspectives, learn things I wouldn't have thought of myself.
I want to get out there and connect with people, and do the uncomfortable, so I can be a better person and social worker.
- I nailed an interview at a suicide prevention/crisis center. Once I get a schedule, I can begin training either next Fall, or next January.
- I have been looking into jobs for this summer. I so desperately want to be anywhere but home this summer. I was looking into working on the Vineyard, but I know my mom wants me to work around home so I can still go on our family vacation.
It's confusing being a college student. You're a young adult now and you are independent and can make your own decisions, but when you leave campus on breaks you realize everything isn't just be your call.
- I am also awaiting an acceptance to a program (I won't say what until it is official) where if I am accepted, I will be leaving mid July 2017 thru June 2018.
There is a reason why I applied, and I know it will be a great experience for personal growth, but I am also terrified.
Gone a year? I will miss my sophomore year completely- right after I have adjusted to this routine and these friends, and this school. With that..what if I won't graduate on time? I know it isn't that big of a deal to take a year off to do something else, but I like being on track.
If that happens- the volunteer crisis center, and the summer job are off the table and so is my sophomore year in Boston.
On another note- a mental health note- my year with my college counselor is coming to an end.
She is an intern, so after this year she's done at my school, and I will be working with someone else next year (If I stay.)
I knew this was coming, but now the spring semester is flying by and I have so few meetings left with her.
The good thing is- she is trying to set it up so I will not be placed with another intern again. She understands how difficult it would be to switch off from intern to intern and having them leave as we get connected and supported. I feel good about that, because I have become used to waving goodbye to my supports as my life takes a new route, and it is hard to re-tell your story to someone fresh each time.
I had a meeting with her yesterday and at the last few minutes I could feel myself shutting down. My vision was blurry, it was harder to fake looking "okay" and it felt like I had tunnel vision. My head felt heavy, and she picked up on the signs and asked me if I was okay. I smiled a little, nodded, and said "yeah" quietly. She then asked if I was overwhelmed and I said "yeah." I wasn't sure why, and that was the truth. It was just so many things at once. When I left, she said she was putting it in her notes to check in with me next week, so I should try and think what might have caused me to feel overwhelmed. I left muttering frustrated statements to myself down the hall. I got back to my dorm, pulled out my laptop and tried to write about what it might have been but I just started crying.
Was it that I had a few minutes left and I wanted it to last longer?
Was I worried about next week's appointment where she was going to be talking about the routine for ending the year with her?
Was I worried that I would cry?
It's weird to talk about, and I shake my head at myself, but I get attached to my support.
I remember when I was leaving for college and my therapist had said, "You won't be my client anymore" and I got back in my car and sobbed, completely misunderstanding what she meant.
It isn't just counselors. Teachers, friends that are older than I, nurses from my childhood memories. I look up to people. It feels so good when someone understands you, accepts you, enjoys your company. I have this weird need to be cared for, nurtured, held when this happens. Maybe not literally, but in a way. It doesn't make much sense to me. I have a loving family, it's not like I have never been nurtured. I am scared of being alone, but that makes no sense because I have so many people behind me, I know that.
I am scared to cry in front of her next week like I had with my therapist before, because I shouldn't. I shouldn't cry because that's just how it goes. So, she'll know I have a heart, and I'm human, and I care about her, and that's great, but that is just how the process works and I just need to keep moving forward.
You see, I know I am doing well, and I am not in the place I was a year ago where I must have counseling. I do like it though. It helps me to feel secure, and I crave that feeling I get when someone notices my strengths, and helps me to work thru and/or accept my weaknesses.
If I join the program next year, I won't have counseling at all.
aye yai yai
You can see why I am overwhelmed.
I struggle to make decisions because I see 8 sides to everything.
Whatever happens, I know it will work out in the end. I know that for sure. It always ends up being okay. I always end up being okay.
I've already established on here how I feel everything so deeply. Right now I have a mix of fearing too much, and loving/caring too much.
No, it isn't the worst thing, but I still need help managing these feelings so I don't end up so overwhelmed.
Any empaths, HSP, INFJ, etc : how do you manage big emotions? What helps you prevent getting overwhelmed by your feelings?
This is it, starting today this is my last week..
my very last 7 days..
before my journey begins.
At this point for me, all of the questions have been creeping in.
Are you excited?
Are you nervous?
Are you all packed?
Are you sure you aren't nervous?
To be honest, I have absolutely no idea what to feel.
"This is a big change in your life."
Yes, this is a big change. But why does change always have to be expected as something that makes you nervous? Life itself is change.
When people ask me why I am not freaking out at this point, I really have more than one answer that I don't always admit.
These past 2-3 years have been nothing but change. My parent's who I always expected would be together forever, got a divorce. My Papa, who I expected was invincible through any illness, passed away. We moved out of my home that I had lived in for 16 years, into a new home with my mom's boyfriend and his two kids. I was now sharing a room with a 13 year old, and had 5 cats, and 2 big dogs.
At this point, I figure that things change so quickly in life, and there is absolutely no time to stop and panic and wish for things to stay the same. They rarely do.
Am I nervous? I am nervous as usual for the "what-ifs" and the anticipation of what to expect. All I can do is just appreciate where I am at now, and just go with the flow to see where it takes me.
When I was younger I expected moving into college would be a super sad day. I pictured myself biting my lip and holding back tears when I said a final goodbye to my mother.
I need to get that mindset out of my head by now. I am almost convincing myself that I am supposed to do that.
I have been looking forward to college since I was a 6th grader and my mom would not allow me to go to a sleep away camp.
These past years, I have been moved around, yet left feeling trapped.
I am so close. I can feel the freedom coming and I can not wait to see what I can do with it.
I need to take a step back though..
I still have 1 more week.
I am filling up my final "schedule" and trying to see as many friends as I can.
I don't think my "calm" feeling is that I am not nervous.
Though, I do believe it is the feeling I am ready.
I am ready for more change.
A Boston social work student, using writing for healing. Sharing the peaks and valleys of an empath's mental health journey.