I´ve also given a few other workshops which I haven´t felt quite as positive about. Although the youth were really great, I think they were more timid and so that made it really hard to lead. And of coure the more nervous I get, the more I start mumbling and my brain goes blank and I´m trying to think of the right words and how to put them together in Spanish while having everyone look at me either like I´m crazy or some kind of alien. But I was debriefing with a co-worker and good friend here at ANADES who pointed out that it´s just another environment that I need to get comfortable in. And I´ve noticed that I really have no fear in speaking spanish in most situations anymore, so what´s one more environment to conquer?
I´ve also been attending the support group for people living with HIV and AIDS. Part of my role is to provide ¨emotional and spiritual support¨ to the people in this group. That means that at some point I should start also going and visiting them at their homes. And I want to, I just know from experience what happens to my health when I do too much and burn out. Anyway, the guy who is in charge of this project told me that they used to have funds for a psychologist to work with this group on a contract basis but no longer have the funds. He knew that I was a mental health therapist in a former life and so asked me if I´d be willing to lead the group counseling sessions. That really made my day, and I told him that I can see myself being comfortable doing that in time, maybe 4 months or so. The difference between that and what I´m doing with the workshops is that you really use a different level of language. For example, a lot of the workshops are concrete and factual, and I can plan before hand what I want to talk about. In a counseling session the content is emotional (conditional and all the subjunctive tenses) which is a much more difficult level of language. And I would just hate to have things happen that I should be responding to but am either not catching or am not able to express emotionally what I want to say. So there is a future challenge.
Lastly, my brother in law is getting re-married in September and I plan to be back in Canada for the wedding. I´ve got 3 weeks of vacation for this year and so have just decided to use it all during that time. I didn´t realize that I was homesick until I started to think about all the thinks I´ve missed from home. So it´s been really good to have that trip to look forward to.
I hope to see many of you, my faithful readers (haha), when I come back to Canada in September. Until the next time, take care!