As of this moment, I've completed my first two days of Clinical Pastoral Education. I should offer this as a caveat: my reaction to this program will be havily biased for no other reason than the program affords me the opportunity to wear a white lab coat. It's a simple thing, to be sure, but anyone who remembers me from my pre-med days will recall that I always wanted a lab coat. My dream has come true.
Truthfully, this is going to be a draining and demanding experience. Due to confidentiality issues, I'm nervous about talking too freely about the happenings at the hospital. This is such a graced time in my life in that I am able to companion people at their most vulnerable stages and I do not want to say or do anything that would compromise the integrity of the relationships I develop. As time passes, I'll certainly explore my own reactions, but I doubt highly whether I'll share funny necdonte from the hospital...unless, of course, they involve me alone.
I don't know how often I'll post or, for those of you with whom I chat on the telephone, how often I'll be in contact. There is so much work to do! For instance, my shift on Friday is 8:00 am - 12:00 am...yep, sixteen hours! I pick up my gym membership tomorrow and hope that I'll not be too tired to make good use of it.
I would be remiss not to mention the profound gratitude I feel for the community with whom I am living. It would not be hyperbole to say that I am living with some of the most generous, funny, and talented men the Society of Jesus claims as its own. I am humbled to sit at their table and proud to call them my brothers. If I could expect but a sliver of this as my future, I would rest assured that I had a great future of community living in store for me.
It's 9:36 and I'm old, so I'm going to bed. Good night!