I have had one of those days and it’s hard to stay positive. They say things come in 3’s but today it seemed closed to 10’s. I know, I know, its part of the role but it can take its toll on you and its hard to find people to off load onto. That’s why I started this blog, hoping that other DSL can relate and either take heart or help me.
My first issue was trying to get hold of Locality team members, after 4 phone calls without any answer and a bit of hunting for an email, that was a free period gone. Of course I had to document all of this. Then I had two different students with concerns. Again nothing huge, but in their eyes it was a big issue and one that needed careful consideration on how to move forward. I had in fact been aware of the issue but of course I couldn’t tell them. Then a member of staff wanted to off load. In the middle of this, my phone went, they didn’t leave a message so all I could think of was ” I wonder if that’s the locality team getting back to me“. Then went for a cup of tea at break which turned into a bit of an obstacle course, with people asking questions, most wanting reassurance or clarification. Lunch involved a FCAF, which I then finished in the evening, well……… tried.
Gosh I sound like Moaning Myrtle ( guess what book my daughter is reading at the moment). Reading this back to myself has been motivation enough, to give myself a bit of a shake. I think the problem is that sometimes all I hear is when things are really bad. Students rarely come and tell me the good news, which can mean that sometimes I see the world as all dome and gloom, and of course it isn’t all like that. I have had success stories, students who have got through school with anxiety issues, or managed to stop having CPT or seeing the counsellor and is achieving good grades or even the student who finds alternative coping mechanisms to self harming. By then though the students don’t come and see me. Either because I / we ( the school or family) have done a fantastic job and they don’t need us anymore. Sometimes they are so embarrassed that I have seen them at their weakest that they ignore me, they don’t even maintain eye contact when we cross paths and this is ok. They know where I am if they need me and every now and again I will send an email reminding them of this fact. Tutors often report back about how well they are doing and I watch quietly but with a proud smile.
It can be a lonely world being a DSL but its a great job and one that makes a difference and that’s motivation enough.