By Helena Pelsmaekers
I remember horse riding lessons on a Sunday morning. I was 15 years old, had the ambition of galloping in one of those wide horizons you see on television, feeling free and one with your horse, hair blowing (flattering) in the wind. Unfortunately, I always got the black stallion with too much energy, leaving me one day with a terrible fright when he kept staggering.
And that was it, my career as a cavalier was over. The tutor tried to convince me otherwise with her words “As soon as you fall off and get scared, you have to climb back up immediately. If you wait, you won’t be able to get over it”.
Horse riding wasn’t for me but the advice she gave stuck with me.
I wasn’t sure if coming in on Monday was the best thing to do after getting bad news in the morning but I was glad I went for a few hours. The town hall talk from Marc was helpful and had a few similarities compared to the advice I got from my horse riding tutor. Uncertainty leading to loss of confidence leading to confusion and eventually depression and crisis. To get out of the crisis you’ll have to accept it, recover and explore. Which will then lead to a new found confidence and transformation. Getting yourself back out there after a crisis is probably the hardest thing to do in this positive-negative changing curve. Getting back on your horse after failing and falling off.
So what if something that happened in your personal life gets the upper hand and interferes with your process at SCA? I always considered my personal and professional life as two separate curves and until now, I could keep them separated pretty well. Of course if one of them goes down, it’ll reflect a bit in the other one but in my case, never letting it crash entirely. I’m feeling a numbness in both of them at the moment. And as much as I’m saying that I just have to get it together and focus entirely on getting at least the curve of work back up without first dealing with the personal one (like I always do), it’s easier said than done.
So I made sure other people wouldn’t be affected by my absence and distanced myself from SCA for a day. The half term break couldn’t come at a better time. Going home this weekend, processing everything and not dealing with it on a distance (as I’m doing now) will be a good start. And even just saying to someone “I’m not fine” out loud helped me accepting it that it’s fine to not feel fine. As long as I come back on Monday after half term feeling much better.