If you search the phrase "Hindsight is", in addition to sites one would expect, you'll also find links to political 'Hindsight is 2020' bumper stickers, shirts, etc. Given my stance on the current administration, I appreciated the message when I saw it on the shirt of one of my friends--but seeing the phrase reminded me of this entry I've been meaning to write.
I've wondered for many years why God led me through my various education paths. Don't get me wrong, I've enjoyed and appreciated each degree pursuit, but I never felt a clear understanding of the mix of degrees.
My career path has not been any better. My first job ended abruptly due to shady workings of the accountant. I was then out of regular work for nearly one year, during which time I launched a private practice and took on two part-time/occasional positions. We lived paycheck to paycheck, plus assistance from another source without which we would have lost our house. By that point, God had led me through a Bachelors and two Masters Degrees; yet there I was, out of work with no promising leads.
I didn't understand.
Then, just a few short weeks ago, the pieces of this section of the puzzle of life came finally and fully into clarity.
Over the last six years, I've worked two jobs: one as a chaplain and one in private practice. For most of that time, I was content with the combination. I enjoyed the variety of counseling I was able to do in private practice balanced with being welcomed into the stories of people in their most vulnerable days.
Somewhere between years 4 and 5, though, I got a bit itchy. The feast or famine reality of private practice was taking its toll. My husband was heading towards long term disability, and therefore a loss of insurance. I needed a change in my chaplain work. It was during that itchy time that I was simultaneously blessed with two wonderful opportunities: first, I was able to add the role of bereavement counselor to my duties; second, the role addition raised my hours to full-time, benefit eligible status. What a gift!
During that transition, I still enjoyed the variety provided by private practice, but grew increasingly tired of the inherent unreliable nature. I also discovered that bereavement counseling is my sweet spot.
I settled in nicely then, yet continued to feel a persistent, though quiet, itch. I was beginning to grow weary of private practice. I was beginning to grow weary of my work, even with the new dual role. I longed to "move up" and do more training/supervising. To do that, unfortunately, would mean leaving my current job and I wasn't ready to do that. So I stayed and I waited, trusting that somehow the itch was the Spirit preparing me for a change my limited mind could not envision.
Indeed, the Spirit was preparing me!
Quite unexpectedly, I was recently pulled into my supervisor's office--a moment that, regardless of positive reviews, tends to cause anxiety--and informed that a new position was being created and I was being considered to move into that role. The position? A managerial step-up that allows for more time, more responsibility, but still some counseling and some chaplaincy. Brilliant!
Knowing I should no longer be surprised by it, I am still amazed at the perfect timing behind it all. I can look back and see I needed to experience the breadth of counseling in order to find my passion area. I now understand why doors continued to close when I pursued certification in something else. I understand why my previous job had to end (though still not why it had to be so ugly); I even have a bit more understanding why I needed the palate cleansing time between my two jobs--it was during that time, after all, that I discovered the joy of hospice work.
So, although there are many sections of the puzzle missing pieces, this section is clear and in living color. Hindsight isn't just 20/20 in this case, it is a thing of beauty!
I'd love to have you join the conversation! Please share in the comments about one of your Hindsight moments.