Sometimes, I ask for a rain check. Sometimes, I drive to the High School just to turn around in the parking lot and go home. Sometimes, I’m not ready to hear another heart wrenching story. Sometimes, I need to tell my story first.
I’ve been a Youth Worker for two years now, and one lesson my mentor and supervisor has taught me is that before going into any contact with teens, you have to first be ok with God, and be ok with your spouse, and ok with the world. Only from a place of peace in all those areas will you be a good listener, have wise words to say, and be able love like how God loves.
So yes sometimes I ask for a rain check, sometimes I drive home. But always when talking with a teen, I talk from a place of love. This is not a selfish act, it is because I love them enough to try to be there for them in the long haul. To be here for many many years to come. To be here for their younger siblings when they come up thru the high school, to be a loving presence in their lives. To be stable. To be consistent. So that they know that every time they hang out with Carmen, that they will get a good loving listener.
So sometimes I stay home and do that paperwork that’s been piling up.