April 23rd, 2008 by Rainey

So I work with teenagers as part of my job. Or my “vocation” as those in ministry are wont to call it. Since they see it as a “calling”… And I do too. Why else would I be working with teenagers, I ask you?
Tonight was one of those nights. I have had a lot of them since having the baby. A night where I am not totally engaged, not totally there, and everything seems to be off.
I actually really love working with my kids. They are funny people. They are confused and still working out who they are going to be. They are exercising their choices without any real notion of how those choices will affect the rest of their lives. They are pretty cool, really. And getting to know them is pretty cool for the most part.
The only bad thing is that to really get to know them you have to become vulnerable. Like any relationship, you have to be willing to get hurt a little in order to care for them. And so sometimes, when your nerves are already frayed, and you have spent your whole day with an unhappy baby, the last thing you want to do is spend time with teenagers who can say mean things in offhand ways and forget what they said two seconds later, leaving you with the burden of forgiving them without an apology.
It was just a hard day. And sometimes they don’t make it any easier. It just stays hard.

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