|One of those people:|
my friend Jennifer whom I
met in grad school
On my last evening there, I ate dinner with 6 other play therapists. We were male and female, gay and straight, married and single, parents and non-parents, older and younger, academics and non-academics, well-known in the field of play therapy and not so well-known, and we come from a variety of theoretical orientations in our treatment of clients. Some of these beautiful people already knew me and some didn't. At the end of the meal (and I think one could only do this in a gathering of play therapists), one of them asked us to each share one thing we learned about someone at the table and one thing we learned at the conference. I just love stuff like that!
imperfect me allowed me to take risks, and thus grow/change as a play therapist and as a person. And this freedom and acceptance has a calming nature to it such as the blue color of my stone.
A personal struggle throughout my life is my tendency to be shy and introverted. Most of the time this is no longer a problem for me. But I am aware when I am at a large gathering such as this one where there are play therapists who have more experience/publications/presentations/
money/etc. than me, I find I may start to compare myself to these people. Then the shy, little Jodi comes out and I feel less than. So I push through it because I remind myself--how can I compare myself with all these various people when the stories of our lives have taken such different paths? I also remind myself that I AM ENOUGH. I force myself to sit next to someone more well-known in the field or volunteer a comment or question in a workshop discussion. I don't have to do this, but I've learned that in doing so, I might learn something new from that well-known person or experience him or her in a new way. By commenting, others may learn from me or be appreciative that I asked the question they were afraid to ask.
So there are other reasons I am emotional at the end of the conference and feel wiped out. All that reflecting and pushing through means I need a day or two to rest, play, and decompress as you'll see in my next post.