For those who don’t know me well (and actually read this still), I’m a student. I resigned from my job as a youth work out of a need to become more focused on change from a meso/macro level. While working with young people is something I’m really passionate about, one of my biggest struggles is how hard it is to get the young person’s environment to change. So I went back to school to undertake my Master of Applied Social Work. I’m currently on placement and I’m discovering a few things about the world.
It turns out the whole world is not Christian. I know I’ve always known this having grown up not in the church, but having studied Ministry and worked in the church for a few years now, I’m discovering that normal looks quite different to what I’ve been seeing the last few years. In fact, it looks more like life growing up was more normal.
I’m also discovering that there are a lot more issues out there than I thought. There’s a woman who got beat by her husband and got her kids taken off her for not getting out of the relationship when she should have. There’s the man who moved down from Auckland months ago because trying to find a job in Auckland is crap. He’s trying to start a new life for him and his kids… while living in his car. There’s the woman being booted out of her home after several years. She has no family, barely speaks English, and barely has any friends. Then there’s the man who’s wife left him and took his kids and refuses to let him see them, the woman who lost her husband, the man discriminated against in the job market because he has tattoos and looks scary. There’s the man who in the winter can’t heat his house properly when all the heat is escaping through cracks in the house. He’s waiting on those three dreaded letters… EQC. There are people trying to change their circumstances, but the cruel world doesn’t often let them.
I’m discovering more and more than I’m a true blue crier. I cry a lot. I hold it in when people are telling me their stories but when I get home for my lunch break, I let it all out. I cry over injustice, unfairness, and the pain of people’s personal experiences. And always, I’m wondering what I can do to help. Last week felt a little like homeless week. People were coming to me asking me if I knew of places they could live. My heart just wanted to take them home to my house, where I selfishly have four rooms to myself.
It just sucks man.