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when worlds collide

liz lamoreux

A funny thing happens when worlds collide. You stop and notice yourself and wonder how others see you. Do you know what I mean?

Like when blog world meets real world
College world meets high school world
Work world meets…
I think you get it.

Last week, I noticed something interesting in my sitemeter. I began to see a couple of similar incoming links that I didn't recognize that were repeated quite a few times from various different locations. Locations of colleges that kind of rang a bell from this time three years ago. Through some detective work, I deduced that I have been discovered. At least that is what it feels like. Because the truth is: discover my blog, discover me.

Before Jon and I moved to Tacoma, we both worked at a boarding school back in Indiana. It is the boarding high school I attended actually. I was a counselor for one of the girls' dorms there. I don't think I have ever talked about that job here. To be honest, I have needed a long break away from it. I needed to remember why I loved going to school there and how it felt like home to me when I was a teenager and why that was. Working there was not quite that same feeling, not quite home.

A few months after we moved out here and I was in the midst of my two-year yoga teaching training program, we spent a weekend on the chakras. I had two pretty significant experiences that weekend. One had to do with my second chakra, the other with my fifth. After I described what had happened to me internally during the group exercise we did around the fifth chakra, the woman leading the weekend asked me what I did for a living. At the time, I hadn't really started editing much, so I said, "well, I used to be a high school dorm counselor who was kind of in charge of all the emotional, academic, and other needs of 50 teenage girls." She paused. Looked straight at me and said, "I never want you to do that again."

Now, here is the part where I tell you how much I did love parts of my job. Specifically, I enjoyed working with the girls. I loved hearing their laughter in the hallways and the moments when they would come and sit in my office and tell me how their day went. I loved seeing them grow from frightened freshmen to incredibly confident seniors.

But, what this woman meant was that I didn't have the boundaries in place to keep myself emotionally safe while trying to help others. I took it all on. I wanted to be better at a job that had set up a no-win situation for us as counselors in that we had to discipline yet we hoped to be the students' safe person. Pretty hard to be a "safe" person for kids when they are afraid to tell you anything because you have to "turn them in." I beat myself up constantly for not being able to balance who I was inside with who I was expected to be. There were students who had been through a lot in their lives and needed a level of attention that was difficult to give when trying to help 49 other students. There were challenges that I cannot go into here, but they were the kind that the students wouldn't have known about. The kind that forever change a person. Being a part of those challenges forever changed me.

And, I needed to take a big break from that world. To remember the reasons why that place had been like home to me at one time.

So back to being discovered. Yes. It seems that a group of girls I had the honor of watching grow from those overwhelmed freshmen to amazing self-assured seniors have discovered my blog.

And, this has caused me to think about how they might see me. I wrote my blog for several months before I shared the link with my family and close friends. That was pretty weird, but I got used to it. I have come to a place where a few people do know about my blog, but mostly, I think that my blog readers are other bloggers. Though, I discovered recently that if you google my full name you are led right here. But, I mean really, who knows me? Who googles me?

I thought about how I looked at my high school teachers and how it would feel to discover a blog by one of them. I think about how some of them are frozen in time for me and how I never really thought about what books they might read and what kind of hobbies they have.

It is interesting when worlds collide isn't it? When you get a glimpse into another side of someone, and in that way, you get a glimpse into yourself as well.

Girls, I imagine it might be hard to believe that this woman who wears her hair in pigtails and dances to Tina Turner and writes poetry and paints and sews and laughs and writes the truth of her life is me.

Welcome to my world.

(Hope you will say hi sometime.)