Archive for September, 2016

UGH

September 30, 2016

Today went right into the shitter.

Literally.

Damn it man.

I dropped my phone in the loo.

Fortunately two things.

One.

I had literally just cleaned it.

Two.

I was on the way to the loo, so really it was just a clean bowl of water.

But never have I cursed my bladder so, I completely forgot that my phone was in my back pocket, I just had to pee.

Had to.

I had gone up to the market to grab a few things in case I wasn’t able to get out to the grocery store tonight and when I got home it just hit me and I dashed in and well.

Fuck.

The phone fell in.

And.

Damn it.

It got stuck.

It was lodged, so it sat in the water for seconds.

Too long.

Too long.

Too long.

I did manage to get it out and I wiped it down and stuffed it into a container of brown rice immediately.

Note to self.

I need to buy more brown rice.

Ugh.

I pretty much had an off the grid kind of day today.

No Iphone meant no phone calls, texts, photos, social media.

I was a bit flustered and peeped online real quick to see what it would cost me to replace my phone and realized I didn’t have enough time to give a real look over and also that it takes time to deliver a phone and I really can’t see going more than 24 hours without it.

It’s my alarm clock.

It’s my life line.

I mean, seriously, I make recovery calls on that puppy all day long.

Nothing too serous going on with me.

Just a busy week, a phone interview with a prospective family–a 40 minute interview–that was nice but ultimately I don’t know that we are a great match, I’m already priced higher than what they were looking for, but the mom really wants to work with me and asked me what I would consider negotiating for if I went under the table.

I realized I could.

But.

I also realized what I would take for under the table is still probably too high for this family and also that there wouldn’t be room to go further, they would be paying the top of their range and really wouldn’t have room for raises, insurance needs, etc.

I have sat on it all day, partially because I didn’t have a phone to email back with.

And also to acknowledge to myself that even under the table with my skill set I could probably make more and to not cut myself short to work with a family that I may like personally, but professionally may not be the best fit.

I’m probably going to pass on even making an offer and encourage the to keep up the looking.

I’m ok to just sit on things for a day too.

I don’t relish the thoughts of not having a phone or having to purchase a new one.

Mother fuckers are expensive and I’m very attached to having mine with me.

I use it a lot at work, texting with my employers, using the camera, I use it for work too, like as in my alarm clock to get up for work.

Tomorrow I have an appointment before work and I really do hope I get out of bed in time for it.

I’m pretty sleep trained, so it shouldn’t be too hard, I have a general sleep schedule during the week and the time parameters fall well in between what I would typically be up for.

I mean.

Honestly.

Most of the time I get up before my alarm goes off.

Now.

Monday is going to be different, I will be back at the little side gig and I have to be up way early and at the house before I typically get out of bed now.

So.

I will have a phone by then, by tomorrow afternoon I think.

I do hope the submerging in rice trick does work.

I also managed to find one packet of silica and shoved that into the container too.

But.

If it doesn’t, I’ll be swinging by the Sprint store on Mission tomorrow to get a new Iphone.

And it’s a bit confusing how Sprint does it.

I was chatting with the rep in the store about what phones they had for Iphone upgrade and was really surprised that they had the 7 in the store.

I could have walked with it.

But.

I would have been leasing it.

I asked about buying it outright and was given a bit of a run around and I actually decided to wait.

Just wait.

As much as I wanted to have my phone, to be connected, to be in the social swing of things.

I also didn’t want to drop unnecessary money on a phone if there’s a chance that given enough time sitting over night in some rice my current phone will work.

Especially since I just dropped all my spare cash on the ticket to Paris in May.

And I have no regrets about that at all.

I just found it funny that after spending a bit of money I would go and drop the phone in the loo perhaps precipitating having to spend more money.

As though this month hasn’t been spendy already with the scooter repair and unexpected costs of having to deal with that.

Anyway.

I paused.

I’m going to give it a full 24 hours in the rice and fingers crossed it will work.

I will get up tomorrow, make my appointment, to see my advisor, finally, and then go to work.

I’ll check it at work.

If it’s works.

Yippee!

If it doesn’t.

Oh well.

New phone it is.

Regardless, I should be back on the grid tomorrow early afternoon.

Message me via e-mail if you need to get a hold of me, or ye olde facecrack.

And thank God.

Tomorrow is Friday.

I’m ready for the weekend.

Yes.

Yes.

Yes.

Yes.

I am.

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Do It Anyway

September 29, 2016

Afraid?

Do it anyway.

Not sure how it’s going to play out?

Do it anyway.

Freaked out by the possibility of upsetting a boss you don’t even know?

Do it anyway.

Guess what?

I FUCKING DID IT!

I bought a ticket to Paris for May.

OMG.

I am going back to Paris, my heart is so full and so happy and yeah, all that stuff.

Happy! Happy!

Joy! Joy!

Oh wait, excuse me while I go put on some French music.

Giggles gleefully.

And I get to be there with my friend, my dear, darling, amazing, awesome French friend.

Who I will not actually spend every day with and every minute with, she has to study for her exams.

But when she needs a break, I’ll be there.

Walking through the streets of Paris in the May sunshine.

I adore Paris in Spring.

It is so pretty.

It’s a bit disgusting.

Heh.

When my friend approached me this past weekend at school about going over I knew to say yes, and here it is just a few days later and walking through some fear, and I booked the ticket.

I will be leaving here Thursday evening May 11th and flying back Sunday morning May 21st at 10:40am.  What with time change I will get into SFO in the early afternoon.

I will have all day Sunday to recuperate before going back to work.

Bahahaha.

I don’t have a job for May.

But.

I do have faith and when my faith is a little wobbly, I call my people and talk it out.

It wasn’t so much the money, but the thought of having to negotiate with an imaginary boss about the trip.

I called a friend who made plans to go to India when she was in the middle of a job hunt.

I remember how I encouraged her, I had absolutely no qualms about it, she should go, the job would happen, it would be just fine.  And it was, she got the ticket and got a job soon thereafter that had no problems with her scheduled trip.

I knew I could do the leap, I just had to have a little bolstering to get me to jump.

But jump I did.

Originally I was going to just go for a week, but my friend convinced me to do ten days, that way we could pop over to Provence if the weather in Paris wasn’t great–sometimes May can still be cold and a bit rainy.

Or to a spot on Ile de Rey.

Yeah.

That’s right.

Just an island off the West coast of France.

Oh my freaking God.

I’m going where?

Ok, yes please.

I was terrified though, for a bit of the day, anxious, overwrought, trying to figure out the work deal and I was just like, this is nuts.  

Also I had a found a super cheap ticket but the travel time there and back was crazy making, like 29 hours there and 33 the way back.

Huge lay overs in Istanbul.

Which could have been super cool, but I know myself well enough that even though I like to save a dollar or two, that kind of length is too much.

My friend said as much when I told her the ticket I had found.

She convinced me pretty quick to buy a different ticket.

I thought about it and said, let me sit on it today and I’ll probably buy when I get home.

I went and called around to my people and I got the much-needed perspective from my friend while I was sitting on a bench at Kid Power Park with the boys.

I realized a few things.

First, I could afford to pay a few extra dollars to get a flight that didn’t have a layover that was so long.

Second, that there will always be a job for me.

I don’t have to know what the job is, but there is a demand for someone with my skills and the right family is going to be just fine with me taking a vacation.

In fact.

I must have vacation time and sick time and paid holidays.

It’s part of the package and it’s to be expected with the level of skill I bring to a job.

I have a huge list of assets and I’m an asshole if I don’t or won’t acknowledge that.

I have a phone interview tomorrow with a potential family and I’m pretty sure they won’t want to pay my costs.

But.

I don’t know that for sure.

And.

Some one will.

I mean.

Hell, the family that I worked for Monday wants me a second day and the mom has people at her kid’s school reaching out to her and I have not even posted to Craigslist or contacted any of the agencies yet.

Suffice to say.

Even should a job say, nope can’t accommodate you.

I can find another job.

I’ve got options.

And.

I’m going to Paris again.

I repeat.

IN SPRING.

The last two times I was there it was winter.

I am so ready for warm weather in France.

I’m going back to France.

I am so over the moon.

And I get to do it with a Parisian.

With a chic, sexy, smart, stunning, big-hearted genuine amazing friend.

I mean.

I could have fun with my friend hanging out in a box.

But.

Oh.

The thought of walking through the Marais with her, going down Rue Temple, hanging out at cafes, walking through Marche des Enfants Rouge, eating out in the warm night air, maybe going to a show, just sitting and talking.

I want to go to Ile des Cygnes and just walk it back and forth.

Then hop up to the Metro and go.

Well.

Anywhere I want.

I want to walk the Left Bank and Rue des Ecoles.

Or.

My favorite books store-Le Merle Moqueur in the 20th arrondisement.

I want to see all the street art.

Oh.

Fuck me.

I will finally get to see the LVMH Foundation which had opened when I was last there, but I did not get to.

It’s the Frank Gehry building in the Bois de Bolougne that Louis Vuitton founded.

It is astounding.

I will make my traditional pilgrimage to The American Cathedral on George V and The American Church on Quai d’Orsay.

I will go to the Jeu de Paume again, I really liked it and would love another visit, loads of really good modern art photography.

And I cannot go to Paris without going to Centre Pompidou–very possibly my favorite museum in the world.

And ahem.

Probably popping into Abraxas for another tattoo.

I mean.

When in Paris.

Am I right?

Mwhaahahahaha.

I’m going back to France baby.

So excited.

Talk about having some incentive to get through the school year!

Luckiest fucking girl in the world.

Seriously.

 

 

 

You Are Really

September 28, 2016

In demand.

My boss told me this afternoon when she arrived to the house.

I was busy cooking broccoli soup when she came in.

“How did it go?” She asked, in reference, I’m assuming to the gig yesterday, which she had alluded to when asking me to make a batch of the soup via text when I got into work.

“Good,” I replied and smiled.

As though the two families weren’t in communication, they would have seen each other at school today.

And it did go well.

“Well, you are really in demand,” she continued.  “They loved you and wanted to know if they could get another day with you?”

Oh really?

Nice to hear, but I do wish I was being involved with the conversations.

If wishes were horses, beggars would ride.

“Would that work for you?” I asked, calculating that it could work for me, depending on what day of the week they wanted me.

“Oh, absolutely, in fact, I was asked by another parent if you’re available in January,” she finished.

Oh really?

I mean, how very interesting, timely, and rather amazing.

I was asked for my resume yesterday for a friend who has a friend who just had a new baby.

I worked on it today before work, updated it, added my graduate school program (what person wouldn’t want someone who is getting a master’s degree?  Especially in psychology, didn’t I tell ya, I’m in Child Therapy class right now?) to my education and updated my current job position.

It looks pretty damn good.

So it was sort of funny, is it odd or is it God?  When I had the conversation with the mom.

It went really well.

We talked about references and referrals and she told me point-blank that she wanted what was best for me, that yes, they would love to have me two days a week, but that was their needs and not mine.

Um.

Yup.

I explained that I was concerned about continuity and with benefits and that it’s a challenge to try to get health insurance and days off for holidays and vacation when I’m piece meal with my jobs.

I don’t want three gigs.

I want one.

To that end we also talked about a soft end date for me, being most likely the end of December, possibly before.

The second family that I started working for this week want me until December 12th.

It might be good timing for me to finish up with both families around the same time.

I’ll also be in my last weekend of school that weekend–the 9, 10th, and 11th.

I was a bit bummed today to realize that was the last weekend of school, having just received a wedding invitation for a dear friend for Saturday December 10th.

I thought for a moment about not going, then I was like, fuck that, I’m going.

I’ll do my morning class and leave at the break for my second class.  I’ll miss the evening class, but whatever, I can’t not go to my friend’s wedding.

I sent in my RSVP yes earlier.

I also talked with my French friend about Paris in May.

Oh, the sound of that.

I do so adore it.

I’ll probably buy a ticket here pretty soon.

Although I may wait until I suss out employment.

But.

Fuck.

The tickets are a good price right now.

I found one for $741 round trip direct.

That’s sort of insane for Paris.

I wanted to buy the ticket right now.

I’m just going to pause one more night and wait on my friend’s confirmation of the times that she will be in Paris.

She’ll be studying for her exams and I’ll be mostly on my own to do my own thing.

No problems with that.

The only thing I will want to do prior is get a new camera.

Mine did hit the dust, literally and figuratively after Burning Man.

I was able to retrieve the photographs off of it that I had taken, but there was no getting the camera to work anymore.

I had to say good-bye and trashed it.

I will definitely get another one before I travel.

Heck.

I may want one for November travel as well.

I’ll be headed to Nevada for Thanksgiving.

I was invited to a friend’s house and she’s willing to make the trip to pick me up and to bring me back.

Road trip!

I’m excited for a little side trip to Nevada.

I’m sure it will be pretty, it will be great to have some time with my friend, and it’s nice to be wanted.

That’s what today felt like.

Lots of being wanted.

I felt really good today.

Very alive.

Of course, it may just be that I got caught up on all the sleep I missed over the weekend with classes and the new gig yesterday.

I decided to skip yoga and sleep in.

I am so glad I did.

I needed to work on the resume and I paid rent and put some money in my savings account and did some writing.

I felt all adult and accomplished and proud of myself for taking the time to deal with the stuff that’s been nagging at me to do since the whole work thing sort of dropped on me last Monday.

Grateful beyond words that I have a job while I look for my next one, that I have great references, that my family is willing to refer me out and that they already have people asking for me.

Again.

It’s really nice to be wanted.

It’s something that I need to know.

I haven’t always wanted to see it or acknowledge it, but it’s important to see it.

I sent a thank you text to a friend of mine today for giving me some really insightful words regarding my job and moving forward and she replied, “just reminding you of your superhero powers.”

God, it’s good to be seen.

And.

Loved.

That’s what I feel like today.

Thanks friends.

Y’all rock.

Seriously.

Wow

September 27, 2016

That was a long day.

I mean.

Seriously.

First day at the new Monday gig and it went 10 hours.

Whew.

But I got through it.

And yes, the 20 month old did nap, but it was a challenge to get her down, it didn’t happen right away and there was a lot of stops and starts with it.

Harder than I had anticipated.

But.

Then again.

Oh, the baby sweetness and toes and feet, and the stroller and being outside and not being on a monitor all the time.

The freedom.

Not that I did anything different from what I really always do.

However.

I felt less restrained and more comfortable, although a bit awkward, new house, new things to figure out, new switches, sets of keys…

Fuck.

The keys I have on my key ring right now.

Nice to be trusted.

I literally have the keys to three different million dollar homes in San Francisco.

Crazy.

And grateful that I am so trusted.

“We really felt good leaving her with you, and she’s obviously so happy and you guys look like you had a great day,” the mom said when she came home.

“And oh my God, the house, it looks great,” she added.

Then paid me.

In cash.

Thank you.

Thank you very much.

Glad to be of service.

But man oh man.

I don’t think I could keep up these kinds of hours for very long.

It’s too much.

Even with the baby napping part of it.

I was up to go to the bathroom before the sunrise and as I was about to hop back in bed, gratefully thinking I had a few more hours of sleep, my alarm went off.

I actually cried out loud, “NOOOOOOO.”

6 a.m.

Oof.

I know some people are morning people, and that’s great, I’m much more of a morning person than I used to be, but 6 a.m. is an early start.

Especially after putting in 29 hours of classes over the weekend.

And a full rather hectic week of work prior to that.

It was a big week, weekend, and now the start of the next week, which began with a 10 hour shift with a new family, family dynamic, household, schedule, and children.

No biggie.

Falls in heap on floor.

I’ve got my alarm set for 8 a.m. for tomorrow.

I’m hoping on getting to the yoga studio.

It’s been too long since I went.

All the tumult last week, the weekend of school and this super long Monday has meant no yoga for a week and a half I think.

Too long.

I may change my mind and just wait until Wednesday.

It might be nice to get a full night’s rest and be prepared for whatever is going to be happening at my regular job the rest of the week.

And.

I have also been approached by another friend who has a friend who just had a baby and is beginning the nanny hunt.

I need to update my resume and forward that to her.

I was just too busy today with the new job to do it.

And I feel too tired right now to fully give it my attention.

Although I know I should get it to her as soon as I can.

I haven’t looked at my resume in a few years, it’s time to polish it.

It really doesn’t need a whole lot, just an update on what I have been doing for the last two years, my current job and graduate school.

Ooh.

I get to put my masters program on my resume, excellent.

That will be fun.

I had forgotten about that.

I actually brought school work with me today, but didn’t get the chance to address it what with the baby’s erratic sleeping.

Homework.

Oh.

All the homework.

A day off is probably not a bad idea.

I also went to see some folks at Our Lady of Safeway tonight and that was good.

A little reunion of sorts.

And.

Bumping into a guy I always have had a sort of crush on and not doing anything about it.

No chasing.

I have to say though, I’m getting tired of writing down the paragraph every day of what an adult man looks like and what qualities I am looking for in a romantic mate.

And waiting to be pursued.

But then again.

I see very clearly when it doesn’t work for me and how chasing is never the answer, so when the man tonight didn’t seem all that interested, I stopped thinking about the pursuit and just came home.

There is nothing to do.

No Tinder dance to tango.

No OkStupid.

No chasing boys.

No mothering men who need care taking.

Just sitting still and really letting it all go.

I don’t actually need to be in a relationship.

I have so very much.

Yes.

It’s a goal.

But I’m not going to wait on my life to do things and feel things and have experiences.

Fuck no.

And by letting go, surrendering to the moment, I usually am better off anyway.

They say surrender is going over to the winning side.

I like that.

I have not been successful at dating.

Although, I think that’s incorrect.

I have dated and learned a lot in this past year, starting around February, the day after Valentines Day, when I allowed myself to be approached at the grocery store and asked out on a date.

I have dated a lot since then.

Tried a lot of stuff.

Hooked up a few times.

Went dancing.

Had some meals.

Had some uncomfortable dates, some fun dates, some horrible dates.

I wouldn’t say I’m a failure at dating.

I’m actually a lot better at it then I was at the beginning of the year.

I can’t make magic happen though and I think that’s what is next.

Just letting the magic come to me instead of trying to figure it out.

Figure it out isn’t a slogan.

And until then.

Well.

Fuck.

I have a lot going on.

Full time work, full-time grad school, full time recovery, yoga, writing.

I have enough.

I am enough.

Life is great.

And this Monday is done.

Stick a fork in it and turn it over.

 

Making Plans

September 26, 2016

I knew I was going to say yes before she even finished asking me.

I know to say yes.

Even when there was a tiny voice in my head that said, “but what about work?”

What the fuck about it?

I have no idea where I’m going to be working in May.

Granted.

Yes.

I will have a job.

One always comes around.

For instance.

This new gig tomorrow could lead to my next job (I am still working for my current family, but I’ll be Monday with this new family).  The family is fantastic, friends of my current family, living up in Eureka Valley, on a block, is it possible?  That doesn’t have parking permit issues, meaning I can park my scooter on the street without having to worry about moving it.

The 20 month old is delicious.

And.

Oh.

Wait.

For.

It.

She takes two-hour naps.

Bless you little girl.

I am so excited for two hours naps and parents that don’t work from home.

I got the impression that there will be some overlap occasionally, that one of the parents will be there, but for the most part it will be me and the 20 month old for six hours and then a mixture of the two other brothers.

Both of whom are in school.

This gig starts this Monday and will be every Monday until December 12th.

I am thinking at that time I will have secured my next gig, whatever that will be.

I may also take a little time off at that time, give myself a week or so to let myself have a few days off to acclimate and transition.

Plus.

I’ll be thick into my final papers for the semester.

But.

I’m also thinking further ahead.

All the way to May.

Yeah.

Like that.

Because today I was asked if I wanted to go on a trip to France in May.

Of course I said yes.

Duh.

I already have looked for tickets.

I know better than to not say yes.

Especially when I was told that I would have all my housing covered.

I would stay with my friend and her family.

She won’t be as available to me as if we were really going on holiday together, she’ll be studying for her exams in France, but I was like.

WHATEVER.

She’s my dear friend.

I love her.

Of course I’m going to say yes.

Besides.

Hello.

FRANCE.

Yes, please.

We would actually go to a few places, not just Paris, take the TGV to Provence, for instance and to the seaside.

Oh yes, I don’t care where I’m working, I can make that work.

Plus, I’ll have a little more financial aid that will come into my pocket come Spring semester.

After my disbursement was made, paying for my summer classes, retreat (intensive, it was an intensive), and my current semester I received $675.

Which you know.

Means working as much as I can to cover the rest of my costs, because that’s basically a half month of rent.

No food.

No phone.

No gas for the scooter.

No insurance.

Definitely no yoga.

Just some money toward 1/2 a month of rent.

I remember laughing to myself when my current employer asked if I would still want to work when I won the scholarship I was awarded.

Um.

Yeah.

I have to.

I live in San Francisco.

But that doesn’t mean I can’t save a for a ten-day jaunt to France.

I can fucking well do that, especially if I don’t have to worry about the cost of hotels and places to stay.

Plus, South of France in May?

Of course I said yes.

I am still saying yes.

I have no clue how it will work out, but I told my friend I knew it would and yes, what a perfect way to cap off the end of the second year of school with a trip with one of my dearest to France.

I’d still fly into Paris, and probably from Paris too.

The TGV, the bullet train, will get me to and from really quick and it’s super affordable.

God.

I am so excited.

This will definitely be a different trip for me than the last time I went to Paris.

First, it will be in Spring.

I haven’t been in Paris in Spring in a while.

It really is the best time to go.

And then to the South of France, in warm weather, all my sundresses are longing to be donned, all my sandals ready to be buckled around my ankles.

Fields of lavender.

The sea-side.

The pool with deck chairs.

Oh goodness.

Such deliciousness awaits, strolls with my friend in the dusk, after dinner when she ends her day of study.

Farmer’s markets, flower markets, and I’m sure I’ll stumble upon some art.

I usually manage.

Second.

It will not be with a man who I am in an unrequited love relationship with.

Nope.

No thank you.

I was deleting some files earlier and stumbled across a section of photos of the two of us in LA last summer and my heart banged around in my chest and I felt some sorrow, a sweep of sadness.

I deleted some of them, but I kept the majority.

I don’t have to wallow in something that never came to fruition, but there was love there and to be reminded of having been loved and having loved another, is a great blessing, even if it was a painful experience.

My.

Oh.

Fucking.

My.

How I did grow.

So.

Yes.

Yes, please, another experience with my dearest Paris.

And my first time going to Provence.

I have been to the South of France, Toulouse, to be exact, but not since 2002 and it was just three days and well, I was tipping back the cocktails a wee bit, so my experience I dare say this time around will be much sweeter, happier, and joyful.

I knew I was going to be going back to France again, I just wasn’t expecting the conversation to pop up today.

How glad I am it did.

It colored everything with delight.

My sweet, sweet life.

Ma vie en rose.

(My life in the pink)

How lucky am I?

Luckiest girl in the world.

Seriously.

 

Almost There!

September 25, 2016

I have successfully made it through two full days of school.

You know.

Oh.

Only.

About 22 hours so far.

And.

Seven hours left to go.

Yes.

Sunday is always the easiest and the hardest.

I’m generally ready to wrap it all up and move on.

Yet.

I feel the loss to the “real world” of my cohort and my two best friends in program.

I am such a lucky girl.

I really am.

I have gotten to have this terrific experience and make some amazing friends.

There are people in my life that I so appreciate and love that it makes me almost faint with the feeling.

I had a really nice lunch today with one of my friends and we talked love and life and school, crushes, relationships, sex, travel, Paris, grace, talent, gifts, the things we appreciate about each other and how we just got to be in the right place at the right time to make the connection.

She is amongst a few of my friends whom are incredulous that I am not in a serious dating relationship.

At this point.

I have no real issue with it.

I’m who I am and I am exactly where I’m supposed to be and there’s no changing me or making me better, I’m just perfect.

Imperfectly so.

I don’t have to embark on some self-improvement plan.

Granted there is still so many areas where I can and do get to grow.

Great.

Glad to hear it.

I’m down for some more fun though.

That’s generally where I am at this point in the school weekend too, I want to play, but I still have one more day of getting through and tonight is not the time to play.

Despite having just done a big session of play therapy in my Child Therapy class.

Not quite the same kind of playing that I am alluding to.

Ahem.

Anyway.

I’m just glad to have the energy to be writing my blog and doing the little things here at home to get me ready for my last day of the class.

Then.

I’ll have almost a month off.

Well.

Not really off.

I have papers that will need to be written.

Two so far on the plate.

And of course, loads and loads of reading.

I think I may also have another paper to write, but I don’t feel like looking at the syllabus right at the moment.

I am just happy to be getting through the weekend.

I also made an appointment to see my advisor next Friday and well, get some advising.

Sometimes the experience feels overwhelming and I don’t think I’m going to make it.

Then.

Days like today, when everything flows and I have connection to the material, not always to the way it is taught, I don’t feel quite as connected to the classes and teachers as I have in the previous semesters, but there is some excitement in learning new tools and having new experiences.

I still feel like I need a little play.

I have some dance music on ye olde Spotify.

The Kungs.

I am quite digging on them.

My dear, darling, amazing, sweet, kind, French friend made me a play list and I fell in love with so much of it, and a few of the artists I have ended up adding to my list of albums and I have been listening to The Rooftop Sessions from the Kungs and it just makes me happy and joyful and full of dancing energy.

I could just jam out on this for a little while before making another cup of tea and winding down for the night.

I really don’t want to wind down for the night.

But.

Ah.

Balance.

And I suppose this is good for me, a weekend of school before starting the new gig on Monday.

I’m not terribly happy about that, I haven’t spent a lot of time thinking about it today, I figure no use in getting resentful.

I don’t care for how I felt manipulated into taking the job, but despite the way it happened I do believe it will lead me other places.

I remind myself.

There are no mistakes in God’s world.

I’ll be heading over to the new family after school tomorrow to see the house and get a lay of the land.

I’m going to make it brief and see if I can hit up some of my fellows after that.

I miss my people.

I also do, after a long weekend of school, I don’t get the interactions and connections that are so vital to me over the weekend, especially getting grounded before starting out another week of work.

That being said.

I have had strong connections to my school friends and I feel really held and supported within the cohort.

I feel like I have a place and I have a talent for doing the work.

Grateful.

So grateful.

For these things.

People who see me and allow me to be myself.

I am more and more my authentic self and easier in myself with embracing it all.

There is a great feeling of seeing myself and being transparent.

I feel like there are times when I am pigeon holed or seen in a certain light or manner or style and there’s good reasons for that.

Some of it is a defended stance, I have had a lot of grief at the hands of some and I am tender around how I interact with the world.

But.

Sometimes.

Some people.

Wow.

I just let them right the hell in.

Two of my friends in school remind of that.

How lucky I am that we connected and that I get to be with these bright, beautiful creatures.

It is an amazing gift.

God damn, this music is so good.

I’m crushed out on my life.

My music.

The warm feel in my heart for my friends.

The blessing of getting to be in grad school.

The growth.

And.

Oh.

Yes.

All.

The.

Love.

Seriously.

Luckiest girl in the world.

The Pink Lady

September 24, 2016

Rides again!

Yes.

I got my new Corazzo jacket in the post today while I was at school.

So glad to have a nice motorcycle jacket again.

Of course I got the pink one.

Please people.

I love pink.

Not.

However, that it is my favorite color.

Nope.

It is not.

But.

I like being a cute girly girl on my scooter with my little applied star stickers and my star and sparkle helmet.

And.

My awesome new Corazzo pink riding jacket.

I was a little flummoxed when I got home, though.

For a minute, or five, it was not much fun, I thought the latch on my scooter seat was broken and that I couldn’t get my seat open.

Which meant.

I couldn’t get to my purse, my house keys, my phone.

Fuck me.

I stood outside the gate, I could see the package inside the door.

Irony.

God having a good chuckle at me.

I don’t know.

But.

I did manage to get my seat open, turns out the latch was never really quite latched, the strap to my purse was caught in the spot where it should have latched.

Instead it just reminded me to slow down.

I tend to go fast.

Zoom.

Zip.

Slow down.

Take it easy.

One moment at a time.

No where that I have to get to that fast.

I can be quick to the gas, pressing it forward, going quick.

I like speed.

Sometimes, most times, it’s a feeling of freedom, but it can also be a way to escape the situation, quick, get the fuck out of here, run before there’s a feeling, a connection, an intimacy.

Grateful I know this about myself.

And.

Grateful my friends are persistent with me.

I am thinking of my two best girl friends in my cohort and how wildly grateful I was for their presence today in school.

Especially after the unnecessary anxiety I felt yesterday.

The classes turned out to be just fine today.

And yes.

I do still have reading I need to do, but I handed in both my papers and there were folks who did not have the papers to hand in.

And I could tell there were plenty of folks who hadn’t done all the reading either.

But I had done enough, enough to stay in the flow of what was happening in each of the classes and to participate, which is huge in my schooling experience.

If I participate, the teacher remembers me, I get attention, positive for the most part, and I am a part of the experience.

That’s what I prayed for today, to be of service to my cohort, to show up without expectation, to be myself, to help where I could and to do good self-care.

I brought my lunch, my dinner, my homemade cold brewed coffee.

I had tea for the evening class that wasn’t caffeinated.

I had lunch with one of my darling friends.

I have a lunch date with the other tomorrow.

I was extended a Thanksgiving invitation that I am very seriously considering taking too.

So glad for these women in my life.

So glad that I just showed up.

Showing up is so much of the battle for me.

It’s a big deal.

Especially when I can run from things, or stick my head in the sand or not participate out of fear.

Actually.

I have gotten a lot better at walking through the fear and letting myself be emotionally vulnerable in class.

I mean.

Fuck.

I am going to school to become a therapist, I better be in touch with my feelings.

I volunteered to do a demo with one of my professors today and that was great.

The class got to practice assessing my presenting problem.

Was it PTSD?

Or.

Was it Major Depressive Order?

I’ll let you in on a secret.

It was probably both, but what I was presenting with was PTSD.

And it was the first time I actually understood what the hell was being shown when I was originally diagnosed with it.

I read it in the DSM 5.

I noted the presenting symptoms.

And voila!

I got to diagnose myself.

Not that I recommend that.

And frankly.

I did feel some tenderness around myself and a lack of wanting to engage with certain people and relationships in my life.

I needed a break from looking at all the child hood stuff.

I had to take it gentle and do some self-care.

There’s still stuff to work out and I could go into further detail, but really, why?

It’ll get worked out and it doesn’t need to quite be in this public of a forum.

Besides.

Read enough of my older blogs and you’ll make a damn good guess at some of the traumas I got to live through.

And come out stronger.

Not that I’m advocating trauma for growth.

It just happens to be a part of my journey.

That’s all.

No judgements around it other than I get to be really kind to myself.

Which meant coming home tonight instead of going out with friends from school.

Or.

Friends from life.

“What are you doing tonight?” A new friend text me as I was wrapping up my final class of the day.

I told her I was still at school.

Really my plans.

Go home.

Rub one out.

Take a shower.

Write my blog.

Drink some hot tea.

Watch a snippet of a video.

Go to bed.

Get up and do it all again tomorrow.

The only difference being.

I will be attired in pink.

So.

Very.

Pretty.

In pink.

Yes.

Please.

There Is Only

September 23, 2016

So much I can do.

I told myself as I felt completely blown out of the water by an e-mail I got from one of my professor’s today right before I left for work.

It was a cheery, chatty little hello death bomb.

You want me to what?

Why are you telling me this now?

It’s the fucking day before class and I’m working you twat.

Fuck me.

You can’t spring an assignment on me that last-minute.

I was spaced out the entire time I was on my scooter heading into work.

I kept having to pull my attention right back to the road, to the moment, to the feel of the wind on my body, to the blue sky over me, to the cars in front of me, the lights and the intersections.

By the time I got to work I felt overwhelmed and anxious as fuck.

I called a few people.

I felt the fear like a strangle hold on my neck.

I couldn’t breathe.

I started diagnosing myself with affective disorders from the DSM 5.

Just a little light reading before heading into work, no  worries.

I joke with one of my cohort that there should be a diagnosis in the DSM 5 for anxiety caused from being in graduate school.

I broke it down to myself today.

I can only do so much.

Listen.

The fact that I got out of bed, made it, and prayed was a big deal.

The fact that my rent is paid, my phone is paid, I have a clean home, my fridge is stocked with food I have cooked for the weekend of classes, that I have a job to go to, it’s enough.

I told myself these things.

I looked up at the trees, green, gold, red tinged with yellow against the cerulean blue sky, the cooing of mourning doves on the telephone wire, the warm sun, the cool wind.

I breathed.

In and out.

All I need to do is this.

Breathe and do the next action in front of me.

Panic is not going to help.

I look at all the things I do right.

I am not drinking, smoking, or blowing lines of cocaine.

I don’t eat sugar or flour.

I have a prayer practice for fuck sake.

I’m doing ok.

If grad school imploded.

I’ll be ok.

“Carmen, even at your worst, you are a rock star student,” she just assured me over the phone.

Thank God for my people and their perspectives.

Plus.

I had a major curve ball thrown my way with work this week.

Not like that hasn’t affected me a bit.

Please.

Be nice to yourself.

I caught my breath.

I got my bearings.

I knew I was ok.

I knew it was enough.

It just has to be good enough.

I just show up and that’s the majority of the battle anyway.

The nice thing for me too is knowing that I have to do a certain amount of self-care, this blog is one of the things I do for myself.

And you thought it was all about you, didn’t you, you sexy thing.

No.

I don’t much write with the audience in mind.

If I do I might freak out.

MY MOTHER COULD BE READING THIS RIGHT NOW.

Jesus fuck.

That’s enough to make a person edit themselves.

Heh.

But no.

I digress.

I know there’s only so much that can be done in a day and I do so much.

Really I do.

Even when I lose focus, even when I get complicated in my head, even when I want to shout, don’t you see how hard I’m trying?

There is no one to shout these things to.

Just me.

Whistling in the dark.

As the case may be.

But I think of the owl, the heart shape of his face, the cold dark eyes, the white fluttering wings, and I feel that I am just exactly where I am supposed to be, learning all the things I need to learn.

“People tell you who they are in the first moments you meet them,” he told me gently.

Yes.

What do I tell people in those first moments?

Can I treat myself kind so that others may give themselves permission to do so as well.

Can I smile.

Offer the kindness of a gracious demeanor, can I say thank you and please and you are welcome and it’s nice to see you too.

Can I remember a person’s name.

I can.

And I got through the day.

Granted I had to talk myself out of a hole a few times.

I fell in it.

But.

I also got to smile at the cashier at the market and wish her a happy day, I got to say thank you to Dave Hale who always has the best apples at the Bartlett Farmer’s Market, I got to get hugs from the boys and kisses from the dog.

I got to raise my head to the sunshine and lift my face in the wind.

I get to show up tomorrow and I get to be in graduate school.

If life were fair I’d be in the gutter.

Or.

Dead.

I mean.

Let me be honest.

I should not be here.

Too many things colluded against me for my life not to be viewed as a miraculous, magical, amazing gift.

I get to do all these things.

And I’m grateful I got this thing called perspective in my back pocket.

All I have to do is look around my beautiful little home to know that.

I have so much.

And when my head tells me I’m not enough I know that I don’t have to listen to that lie, that’s just an old tape that needs to get thrown in the garbage, not put on the negative feed back loop.

The highlights of my life are still to come.

It is only getting better.

Seriously.

 

Fleece Lined Tights

September 22, 2016

And falling into Fall.

It’s autumn.

Hello my favorite season.

Though it’s not the same as where I grew up in Wisconsin, the changing light does signal to me the season is upon us.

The crisp cutting of the wind, the smell of the few deciduous trees in the neighborhood turning their green to gold, red, yellow.

The smell of beach bonfires.

A shift, a tilt of the earth.

An owl overhead.

A barn owl.

A white barn owl hovering above me, my heart beat against my chest.

Was I really seeing this?

Its wings a blur of silent fluttering as it shifted in the blanket of air moving over the dune then it dropped.

So fast.

A blur.

I ducked my head.

I literally thought the bird was diving at my head.

I have had birds swoop me for my hair.

It is not the most pleasant experience, just let me tell you, although my best friend in Wisconsin thought it hilarious when we were walking in Olbrich Gardens and swallows kept swooping into pluck at my head.

The owl was coming for me, I know that, I can see it, it was a sign.

Yeah.

Like that.

I believe in signs.

Is it odd?

Or is it God?

I sent a message to a friend of mine that I had gotten to reconnect with out at Burning Man and I told him the story of what was happening in my life and the owl in the dunes last night.

He’s a shaman and his animal is, yes, an owl.

Although not a barn owl.

Here is a decent link to some of the spiritual significance of a barn owl.

And I mention that it was a barn owl, as I have seen a Great Horned once riding my bicycle through Golden Gate park, but never a barn owl, never so freaking close, never silent and there and hovering over me.

Whew.

It was intense.

I felt like a ghost had walked on my grave.

I instantly thought of death.

And death not of myself, but of another, then I realized, no, not death, change, extraordinary change, wild change, a deep knowing that the world is about to become something else, a gigantic shift in my perspective.

I came home and cried a lot last night.

I was cold in my feet.

My hands were cold.

I wrapped myself deeply in my blankets, my heart sore.

Tender.

Vulnerable.

In these moments.

A small knowing opening.

A change creeping in the open back door with the cold wind of fall.

What is working?

What is not working?

I wrote a lot of inventory last night, stashed the blog I had been working on, posted a part of it earlier today, it was incomplete, but complete at that.

I got up early, then went back to bed.

I fell asleep, as the cool morning grey light was sliding in the cracks between the bamboo blinds on the back door, silvery and shined with the coming of day.

I did not get up and go to yoga.

I got up, instead, and read some of my readers and knelt by my bed, I prayed.

Earnest and with longing and with a much lighter heart than when I went to bed.

I washed my sheets and made my bed a new.

I started fresh.

I showered.

I made breakfast, persimmons, another sign of fall, and apple in my oatmeal, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt.

Hot fresh coffee.

Writing, my morning pages.

Then.

A message to my friend, the one who has an owl on his business card.

I told him the situation.

I told him what was on my heart.

He told me the owl had come for me.

Yes.

I felt that.

That it was a deep knowing, to look inside.

He suggested some inventory and that I share it with the clearest person I knew in recovery.

I did that last night.

Guess who I talked to shortly thereafter on the phone?

Yeah.

Like that.

I got some great guidance and a wonderful suggestion.

And I took it.

Strong signatures of barn owl symbolism are abundant creativity as well as fantastic capacity to produce well beyond what others may do. This productivity will not always be visible either since the barn owl hunts primarily at night when others are sleeping. The barn owl is monogamous which speaks of a steady commitment to what you are producing in the world.

Oh yes, that too.

I am here to produce for the world.

Through my writing, through my connections to my community, through school, through love and how I just move through this life.

I feel really blessed to have the experience.

And I don’t have judgement or scepticism about what happened, there was so much happening, that it was what I needed to see.

I needed to see it, then look inside, see what was right with the experience and what was not.

Then to get some outside perspective and to really listen to my heart.

You know what happened today.

Nothing.

And.

Everything.

Clarity.

I wrote on a pink piece of paper and folded it into a small square.

I stood by my hot pink bunny bank from Paris.

I stroked his nose and whispered a prayer.

I looked up and saw the photograph of my mother and father one Christmas long, long ago, 1973? And saw in that dark hair and in those dark eyes a kind of sweet soft mystery and a deep love.

Good bye father.

Good bye to all those old fantasies held onto like a stubborn child.

I Shepard that small girl, daddy’s girl, along with a warm hand.

Not any more my dear.

Time to grow up.

Time to sit and let the sun branch out its warm fingers on your back, a strong hand, a warm guide, and let the wind lift the curls off the back of your neck.

And when you see that last leaf fall from the beech tree.

You will know.

The kiss on the back of your neck.

And the knowledge that all along.

You just had to come back home.

Sitting on this bench.

In the slanting autumnal sunlight.

Of the spirit.

Rich.

Golden.

Blessed.

Graced.

The beat of silent wings above your  heart.

Love.

Love.

It always comes.

Right.

Back.

Here.

To you.

To me.

Always.

This.

Profound.

Love.

 

Just Whiling Away

September 21, 2016

The time.

The time it goes by so quick.

I’m getting ready for my next weekend of school intensive and I do not feel prepared.

And that’s to say that I have done the two papers that are due and have done a substantial amount of the reading.

However.

I have not done it all and it’s a letting go and a surrendering to what is happening that I am just going to be ok with it.

And.

I’m fucking going to yoga tomorrow.

Not that I really want to, my brain says, oh no you don’t, you got reading to do.

But.

I need to get the crap out of my system and stretch and move.

I won’t be all weekend.

The most exercise I manage is walking from class to the student kitchen to get my meals.

Occasionally up and down the stairs if I’m on separate floors for different classes.

So, yes, yoga.

And gently forgiving myself for not having all the reading done.

Life happens and I’ve been busy, well living.

I know that’s hella vague, but that’s what I got to report at this moment.

That and asking to be directed to the next job that I will be working.

I’m pretty set on leaving my current situation by the end of December.

Although I have not spoken to the parents about it, I will be.

They seem to be of the realization that I will be taking my skills elsewhere.

Yes.

I have some trepidation about finding new work and I super dislike the having to get out the resume and polishing it up and updating my references and all that, but it’s what I have to do.

I may not get into it too deeply until after I make it through this weekend at school.

I will be starting my new Monday gig this upcoming Monday.

I’ll be heading over to the house in Eureka Valley after I get out of class on Sunday so that I have an idea of the lay of the land and the house and the family needs, etc.

I think I may take my laptop in with me and while the baby naps, oh baby naps!  I will spend time updating all my stuff.

I should probably do homework too and spend some time catching up on the reading, although I do hope to have more done, I don’t believe I will get it all finished before this Friday’s class start.

Which reminds me.

I need to make a meeting happen with my advisor.

I e-mailed him a while back about a time, but I am just realizing now that he’s not gotten back to me.

He’s also the head of the department, so I’m sure my little e-mail may have gotten lost in the shuffle, always a good idea to get back and check in.

I have not yet met with my advisor and it’s definitely time.

Oh.

All the things to do.

And the best I really can do, ever, is just what ever is right in front of me.

At the moment, this blog, which I am stubborn to relinquish to the demands of grad school.

Although, heh, it often does fall prey to the demands of dating.

I will lapse if I have a date, have you figured that out yet?

Ah, I digress.

As though you didn’t know that.

Anyway.

I may have to leave you shortly, is my rather vague way of hinting that I may have other things happening in my life that are not just work concerns.

That being said, all work and no play makes Carmen a very dull girl.

And no one wants Carmen to be a dull girl, now, do they?

I do feel a little dulled down after reading the text books that I have been delving into.

Again.

Oops.

Got to get.

Maybe I’ll pick this thread up in a moment.


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