What being unemployed has taught me

In April of this year the company I worked for tried to defend their contract with El Paso Juvenile probation with no success.  Everyone agreed to disagree, and the JPD decided to cut the funding for our program.  We showed an 83% success rate while their numbers showed something else.  Apparently it was not a good match, although I’d like to think that I did help many families get better to sustain positive changes.  I was then, out of a job.  You would think that with all of the suffering people seeking help these days, I wouldn’t be.  With some reluctance, I applied for unemployment benefits, and I was eligible.  I decided to keep looking for a full time job within the mental health field while studying for the NCE.  I passed the NCE, applied for my temporary license, and got a very very very part time job (like 4 hours a week) at a local non-profit doing therapy.  I’m fortunate I found a supervisor who is well known in El Paso, and gives me the “in” on working at certain agencies.  Right when I started working at the clinic last week, New York (where I’m claiming unemployment) got wind of the fact that I worked at a bar for ONE NIGHT in August to make extra money.  They are now threatening to take away my benefits, and I’ve had no income at all for three weeks.  I’m, fortunately, living with my parents.  Unfortunately, this is not how I imagined my life to be at 26.

Although, I’m alive and not starving, I must say that I have been feeling discouraged lately.  For a while I thought of leaving the counseling business altogether.  I’ve been praying a lot these days, and I’ve come to the realization that this too shall pass.  That this short time of suffering will end and I will come out of this alive.  I also came to my senses and thought that I will continue to pursue this counseling thing.  I’m passionate about it, and I know that this system is broken and it needs to be fixed.  And I believe that’s why I’m here in the very system that is trying to silence me.
I’ve learned that:

  • Pain/suffering is temporary
  • Many of the material things in this world are not necessary
  • Relationships are important
  • Working hard is important
  • Prayer works and is therapeutic
  • Parents are a pair you only get one set of
  • It’s okay to ask for help
  • God is all I’ve got
  • Patience is really a virtue
  • The only way to get through hell is to keep going
  • I’m tenacious/stubborn/stronger than I thought
  • Jesus loves me
  • McDonald’s and Starbucks have free wi-fi  🙂

Published by ThroughTheEyesOfaTherapist

Mental health clinician, advocate, boxer, drummer, healer. Podcaster, blogger and creative spirit. Cristal Martinez Acosta has been working as a therapist within the border community of El Paso, Texas since 2011. Cristal is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in the state of Texas and a Nationally Certified Counselor (NCC) through the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC). She graduated with honors from the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Sociology. Then she attended New Mexico State University (CACREP accredited), where she received a Master of Arts in Counseling and Guidance with a 4.0 GPA. She has experience working with youth and adults who have been affected by traumatic events. Her areas of interest are childhood abuse, domestic violence, anxiety, high-risk youth, depression, Reality Therapy, and immigration issues. She is certified in both Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Parent Child Interaction Therapy and trained in EMDR.

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