It was one of the hardest years I can remember. Moving from Virginia to Indiana and having no family nor friends here. Beginning my year-long training program in chaplaincy where I did not know any of the supervisors, staff, and other residents. Receiving my first assignment in the Pediatric ICU. Hearing an overhead page for an Adult Code One during my first COD shift and panicking in not knowing where to find that room. Working with a conflicting family through the terminal wean of one infant of a set of twins where the father physically abused the child. Writing down and reflecting on what seemed to be an endless number of patient/family interactions—so many the voices of critique played through my mind over various conversations I had way beyond the residency. Ministering to a teenager after watching the medical team code his brother in the same room; they both had a life-ending form of Muscular Dystrophy. Caring for a family continuously throughout the night as a set of parents watched their teenage daughter being diagnosed with flu-like symptoms to facing the amputation of at least three limbs and her eventual death within a twenty-four period. Participating in discussions with my resident peers where I felt exhausted from just exploring my feeling of exhaustion. Supporting a large group who gathered in the family waiting area to mourn over a teenager’s death via suicide. With these challenges as well as many others, it was a year full of hurdles coming from all directions.
What do you remember from your time of training for your current position? How have you celebrated this journey? I encourage you to celebrate where God has led you—physically, mentally, and spiritually, and celebrate in that, as one of my supervisors shared, as you did “leap,…the net [did] appear.” No matter what happens from this day forward, always be mindful of the hope that the Great Physician proclaims in Proverbs 3:5: “Trust in [Me] with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to [Me], and [I] will make your paths straight.”