The Zoey Blog: If You Could Do This...What Else Could You Do? FINAL - COVER UNIVERSE EXPLORERS ORDER

Saturday, January 25, 2014

If You Could Do This...What Else Could You Do?

The news came as such a surprise that I didn't even recognize the name right away...I had to look through my notes, and then look up her picture...and when my suspicions were made clear, my heart sank.  I knew her.  She was one of my kids from two years earlier.  She was dead.  Nothing beyond that was clear, but the unconfirmed felt pretty damn certain.  Suicide.  That was two weeks ago.  I didn't talk much about it, but it bothered me...a lot.

Last week it was a young man who had suddenly lost a parent...he was pretending as though it wasn't happening...smiling...joking with friends...only to find me and then fall apart, then pick himself back up and smile for his friends.  That one was hard to take.

This week is too hard to talk about, so I won't...I should, I mean, I've gone as far as typing it here, but the details too fresh, the sound of a screaming, hysterical parent still echoing in my already crowded head.

There are days that i worry that this job will be my undoing...and then something touches me, like warm sun on my face through a winter window.

If I can do this...what else am I capable of?  What else could I do?

This week, without uncertainty, I saved a life.  Sometimes you don't know what you've done, but this week I saved a life.  I know this because the police arrived before the phone call was over.  I know this because it's what I was told.  It rattled me...not the near loss of life, but the enormity of what I've willingly allowed myself to be burdened by...the responsibility.  I don't often think about the responsibility, but today I did.

If I can do this...what else could I do?

I'm not worried about who I am any longer...about where I fit, or what people might think of me.  I'm certainly a different person than I was even as little as seven or eight years ago.  I don't think in terms of what I can't do, but feel comfortable with the knowledge that I can do whatever I want...that I'm lucky to live this life so unlike so many others, and that there isn't a single thing I can't manage.  Oh, I'm regularly undone...spun in dangerous circles...knocked down...but getting up is never the challenge it was when I was younger.  Getting up is easy.  I see terrible things, not unlike many others, but the difference is in the intimacy with which I get to see them...up close...without filters or traditional professional protections...badges, titles, appointments and distance...I see how things affect people according to those very people. I get let inside of their heads and hearts, which I sometimes wonder if that's more damaging than watching the actual events themselves?  The fall out can often be so much uglier.

Again, it strikes me...if I can do this...what else could I do?

Then I feel the warmth and comfort of the answer...I don't want to do anything else.


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