Another new day. Another wintery morning. Another human encounter. Yet another epiphany.

I was on a daily routine round of one of the school buildings at work. A routine of the early mornings when a lot of kids look sleepy eyed, teachers stretch themselves and ready themselves for yet another long day, anticipating a few struggles and a few smiles. I am a mere observer in this process to say the least. No active role to play, no active agenda most of the times. More like a fire extinguisher really. Hardly ever used on a daily basis but highly essential to keep on a side nonetheless, in case of any unforeseen friction and sparks.

I realize not much is going to happen straightaway. I would be better off checking out emails and finishing off the pending desk work for now. I can be back for my stand-by role later during the day. Just as I’m leaving the building however, I have a sudden task that pops up in my mind and I need to convey it to the person responsible. As I make my way back in the tiny office upfront, I have to wait back for a while as two people are talking already. A teacher stood there with his back to me, ranting on about a particular frustration that bothers him. The admin head stands there, calmly listening to him, nodding mostly at the right places. By the time he turned around and spotted me, there was a wide smile oh his face; “Oh the counselor is here! Maybe I’ll talk to you sometime later now. For now my problem is sorted”.

Ideally this is supposed to bother me! I’m the one hired to listen to people and figure out where the cog is and then gently guide them to spot it themselves and thus do something about it. Here I am, standing before someone who is supposed to be an administrative head but managing nonetheless to relieve someone and get him to smile again.

Surprisingly, I’m not bothered. If anything, I’m heartened by this encounter. We all have that counselor / psychologist within us who manages to see beyond a problem, who manages to spread smiles through tearful moments, who is capable of excelling despite inadequate resources, who is a good listener. We are a capable species; capable of much more than what we sometime limit ourselves at.

Think back on the last time when you cribbed before someone and found the courage to carry on, try and remember that one smile that refreshes you, recollect that one person who often becomes your sounding-board. We are all healers in our own small ways. And this is pretty much what I do (with a little more technicality), really!

Seeking a counselor’s help is not all that bad!

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