I have mentioned recently that my work schedule has been a bit trying. This past weekend, (Memorial Day Weekend), I had to work at my second job on Saturday morning and my primary job was opening up on Monday to try to make it so we weren’t bombarded on Tuesday after being closed Monday. Sunday was my only day off in a 12 day stretch. But, I was on-call. I ended up with nearly 6 hours of call that day (after having had only 10 minutes of call in the previous 2 weeks). I was frustrated and angry. My kids had been sick, I didn’t feel well myself and I just wanted a breather.
When I finally did get a chance to lie down and go to sleep, I couldn’t. I was still so angry, thinking “How is this not a righteous desire, to just get to have a meal together one time in a week?” Then I remembered a post I’d seen on Facebook about the “Lifejacket Graveyard” in Greece that depicted the reality of refugees trying to escape persecution.
The post stated, “It’s overwhelming to see the mounds of life vests, many of them fake, and see the representation of the magnitude of life forgotten and uncared for. Knowing each landed in Greece with hopes of freedom but are still suffering in camps and getting anyone to listen to them makes it feel extra heavy for me. The smugglers cramthem in boats so tight they can hardly move, in ghetto dinghies often half broken and without a working motor. They are often told they can’t take even the small bag of possessions they have brought all the way from their homes but that it’s okay because once they land in Greece there will be everything they need and they will be given a new fully furnished life immediately with a new apartment and new clothes etc., none of which is true. They land so hopeful, but they aren’t aware of the very long and very difficult journey ahead of them. Also most refugees coming over on these boats can’t swim, and many of them have died attempting to escape their lives of war at home.”
As I remembered that post, I thought, “Anne! Why are you so upset about having work a few extra hours for a job that pays well when there are people going through this!?!?” I started to get frustrated about being upset about something so trite. How shallow was I? Eventually, I cried myself to sleep. (Only to have Spencer come in 30 minutes later at 1:15am to let me know he didn’t feel well.)
The next morning, I knew I needed to get over this hump before I got to work. I was determined to find a way to change my perspective before I got there. Otherwise, someone would say, “Wow…you had a bad day of call yesterday!” and I would either break into tears or say something I would regret. I prayed for help. As I was driving in, I recalled an epiphany that I’d had a couple of years ago (and apparently had forgotten). It had come at a time that was similar to this where I was frustrated with work demands. And it brought me back to why I wanted to go into healthcare in the first place. I wanted to utilize my skills and knowledge to serve others. (Considering my main strengths are in science or 80’s and 90’s pop music, the science route seemed most appropriate.) Instead of thinking, “I had a bad day of call yesterday!” I started to tell myself, “I had many opportunities to serve yesterday!” Sounds corny, I know. It took some effort to get it down into my heart but it did work. Sometimes, we just need to pray to see things in a different light and it will help lighten our load or brighten our day. And, if I need to add in some of that other knowledge base, Erasure, is always certain to make me smile.
Lead image from Unsplash