OK, so one of my most recent decisions was where to do my internship. And here’s the story…..
I would have to say that from the very beginning, being at (A.N.D.), was a blessing. How it came to be was God’s will in my opinion. Upon the workshop display for interns, I saw the company title and assumed it was recovery related, and it was, just not the same kind of recovery I was thinking. This recovery was based on helping survivors of domestic abuse (DV) and sexual assault (SA) to recover from their trauma and regain their own personal power in life.
When I sat with Miss X at the workshop she just oozed the feeling of love and compassion; being in recovery myself with similar trauma I immediately saw how wonderful and important it is for survivors to have a woman like Miss X to talk to. The following day on my way to work, I happened to see Miss X at a coffee drive through chain, I did not approach her but I felt like God himself tapped me on the shoulder to tell me that this is the spot for me.
The introduction workshop was so intense; most of the interns were completely exhausted each day after class. I myself went home and took a nap each day just to recover from the intensity and the amount of information we took in. I immediately signed up for the Medical Advocacy Volunteer position thinking that helping people directly would be my best bet.
Once the new semester started and this particular class began I started on the phone shifts for the crisis hotline. That has been a little tough because I am a person who likes to be busy and I feel like all I really did was sit behind a desk. The phone system was not working properly 60% of the time and I feel that much of the staffs’ time was spent trying to get the phones forwarded from the shelter to the crisis center in the morning. The staff had some changes in between the workshop and the new semester and many things seemed different. A lovely woman, Miss M had passed away in a tragic accident, another woman left for maternity, and others were gone for other positions elsewhere. So it seemed like starting out with total strangers. I know I felt rather shy, and it seemed that no one there was especially welcoming either. So for the most part I kept to myself and did as instructed.
Although I love A.N.D. and what it has to offer for services, I do not feel that it is a company I would choose to work for in the future. I may stay on to volunteer for the medical advocacy spots occasionally, but I would not seek it as a primary field. On another note, I do feel that the training I received and the experience I got with the medical advocacy is only going to benefit what I have to offer to my future field. I plan to be involved with chemical dependency, possibly the courts and counseling and therefore that information and experience is quite suited to make me an asset to those fields. Much of the time D.V. and S.A. can be relative in the lifestyle of those who suffer alcoholism and addictions. I am glad that I will be able to give an extra helping hand to my future clients, whomever they might be if they also suffer from the trauma I was lucky enough to become educated in, other than a survivor of.
I have learned to embrace my own survivorship as well as help others to embrace their very own power, reminding them that they are brave and phenomenal people to even have the courage and self-care enough to pick up the phone and ask for help. These people have chosen to walk through their fears, and grow through their experience and often times choose to then help others. They learn to embrace the power they thought they had lost and help to restore their self-confidence. It was such an honor to be a small part of that. I believe that because my passion to take everything I experience and use it to not only make myself a better, more valuable person but to guide others to becoming a value to themselves as well. After all, we are worth it.