God gave me a gift. He gave me the ability to experience the feelings and emotions of another person. This isn’t saying that I have some sixth sense. I am simply saying that I am an empathetic person. Yep, God made me empathetic. Yet, sometimes I ask God why he gave me this gift because I can promise you it isn’t always easy. My empathy goes too far sometimes. For one, my older niece talked me into watching the show Love Island and while watching it it reminded me why I can’t watch these type of shows. I had to quit watching shows like The Voice and American Idol because when someone is voted off, I feel their pain. I know that seems silly. After all, these are people on television that I don’t even know, but when someone hurts, I hurt.
Today, I was sitting through a training at school. We had to go through some “test” so to speak, you know, to figure out what type of teacher we are. First two, I was answering, and thought, “What am I doing wrong? I am barely saying yes to any of these.” Then the box for empathy came up. Ding, ding, ding. Yep, full blown. So when we were discussing, I got emotional. I told them that there are so many positives to this. I can feel a student struggling without them even saying the words, which is so good for this student because I can reach out privately and offer help, but I bring this pain home with my constantly. I also let them know that, we, the teachers that feel more are the teachers that are less likely heard when we have to sit through meetings and make choices that will affect the students and the staff. I honestly can’t tell you why I got so emotional with my response. Maybe it’s because I am struggling with my career as a whole. It is true though, I can feel my students’ pain. I wonder if this is why they come to me and vent about things. Whether it be a coach, another teacher, or a friend. I wonder if they know that I feel what they’re going through. Now I want to pause here. I tell them upfront that I will not talk bad about another teacher or coach. I also tell them I can’t fix it. That that is their responsibility, but if they just need to vent then I am all ears. Their response, every time, is “I just need to vent.” I feel I need to pause again and say this. If they are in any danger, I will step forward. A lot of times, it is just them being upset because something didn’t go their way. So yes, I fell in the empathetic category, and it made me stop and think. It is so heavy carrying everyone else’s pain. I don’t know if I would want to be any other way though. So again, it is about finding my release so that I can continue being their release.
With all that said, God gave me the ability to be empathetic. It does get extremely heavy at times. I still have my problems and then someone else’s fall on me. However, I am not a stand by and watch people hurt type of person either, so here we are. My empathetic butt and all. I guess instead of asking God why he chose me to carry this; I will thank him for choosing me.
Find the gift God gave you. Think long and hard about it. Then, instead of asking why, thank him for trusting you. Empathy is my super power, what’s yours?