“I believe the wisdom of Jesus is far ahead of ours. He knows our soul and mind so much better than we do. In this case, my belief is that Jesus knew that for healing to take place, the mind and soul of the man needed to be willing for it to happen.”
Around the same time that I began the work towards becoming emotionally healthy and finding healing, I was entering my 9th year as an educator. All 9 of those years, and 4 years of college, I worked with kids who brought an incredible amount of trauma to the classroom. It wasn’t until year 9 of my own professional career that I realized I had walked through 13 years of secondary trauma from living life so closely with the kids I was responsible for during the day. Coupling the secondary trauma with a lack of boundaries and my own personal childhood trauma, the perfect storm brewed. I spent year 10 and year 11 as an educator trying to manage the storm, staying committed as I could to my school community, being a wife, and a mom to 3 little boys. Needless to say, it didn’t work.
After an absolutely devastating 2021 Spring semester in public education, I was hit rock bottom.
In August of 2021, I knew something had to give and I denied what I knew was true. I knew then that I needed to walk away from public education. Prior to the 2021-2021 school year beginning, I met with my therapist and doctor. They both agreed that I was carrying massive amounts of anxiety, depression, and PTSD. Ultimately, they left the decision up to me. I started the school year and that I could figure it out.
I spent most of my work days just holding back the panic attacks. Some days were so rough, that I just spent time “working” in a few close friends’ offices and classrooms. There were days that it was impossible for me to do my job and lead other teachers through their classroom struggles. Fast forward to February 2021 and I couldn’t manage it anymore. I had to walk away and that was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. Walking away from the very thing that I poured my heart into for so long. I wanted to feel better. I wanted healing to happen more than I wanted my job.
The months following my departure consisted of massive recovery from the impacts of secondary traumatic stress. There was a lot of grief, fear, uncertainty, and sleep. Lots of sleep. Once the fog began to clear and I felt the healing happening, I decided it was time to go back for everyone else who was still experiencing what I walked away from.
Ten10Coaching was born.
It’s been one year since I walked away from public education. Now I’m spending my time walking alongside anyone who experiences secondary trauma in their professional life. Educators, social workers, nonprofit volunteers, ministry leaders, medical professionals, and more. It is possible to work in these professions, caring for others who have hard lives, while also remaining healthy. It is possible to sit with someone on their hardest day without taking it home. The resources are not readily available in some careers. The heaviness of these jobs is discussed and it is known, but what isn’t talked about is the HOW. How are people supposed to carry the weight of the job and be okay?
Let’s talk about it.