Archive for April, 2017

Two Down

April 30, 2017

One to go.

I finished my Trauma paper today.

It was a big deal.

I am super happy and grateful it’s done and I’m also glad to let the material rest, it was challenging material, traumatic stuff you might say, and I am happy to let it be for a while.

I will still have to go back and dip back into the material as I will give a presentation of my paper in the class next weekend.

I can handle that, oh, I’m sure I will cry, it was a day for tears.

But also a day for laughter and much joy.

I just got back from a big dinner get together and fellowshipping and I am so awful glad I went, it was just the perfect break from homework and I got to be connected to people and see people and talk to people.

Like.

Real live people, not just social media interactions.

I also got asked out on a date!

I was not expecting that.

And yes.

I have a date for tomorrow.

That will definitely give me incentive to write my last paper.

I am also speaking at a spot at 6p.m.

I will have my paper done by 5:30 p.m.

That was the promise I made to myself.

So when I was asked I was actually able to say that I could go to dinner tomorrow night after my service commitment, because I already knew that I would have my last paper written by the time I went to cover the commitment at 6p.m.

And now I damn well better.

I don’t want to have a paper dangling over my head.

It’s interesting.

I could tell immediately that he was attracted to me and I was intrigued, and also a tiny bit cautious.

I don’t date guys in early recovery, sort of rule of thumb and sometimes when I meet a guy whom I haven’t seen around before I get cautious.

Turns out he’s from out-of-town.

But not so far from out-of-town that he’s untenable to date.

San Rafael.

That’s not too bad and actually it’s an easier bridge, the Golden Gate Bridge, for someone to navigate from to me as I’m so far in the Outer Sunset.

Just blocks from the beach.

The beach that I didn’t think I was going to get to go to and was feeling a little sad about that today when I walked out the door to yoga this morning.

It was glorious today.

When it’s warm in the Outer Sunset at 8:45 a.m. it’s going to be a nice day at the beach.

I was happy to get to yoga, so I had no thoughts about also trying to squeeze in beach time, I had the paper to write and I also had to meet a couple of ladies at Tart to Tart from noon until 2p.m.

I was glad to be out in the sun but had no beach expectations.

I got back to the house at 2:30 made some lunch, sat outside on the back patio and soaked up some rays and then sat down and cranked out my paper.

I was done by five p.m.

I started the writing at 3p.m.

Thank God for the time that I had this week at work, I had all the material ready and it was just a matter of following the guidelines for the paper and writing it.

I wrote an eight page, 2,300 word paper.

I was done by 5p.m.

It was still sunny and I didn’t have to be to the spot until 7p.m.

I decided to walk down to the beach and get some sand under my toes.

I threw on my flip-flops, grabbed a bottle of water and had a glorious 45 minutes of chill time, then walked up to Trouble Coffee and grabbed a treat cafe au lait.

I sat outside in the parklet and enjoyed the feeling of being done with my paper and knowing I was going to go see some friends tonight and hang out and go out to dinner.

I got the paper done, I got to go to the beach, and I got asked on a date.

Fucking not bad for a Saturday.

“Have fun, be flexible,” she admonished me.

This happens a lot recently when I meet with my person and she’s right, I can get buried in the doing and the going and the moving and the shaking and I can and do get isolated.

It felt so good to be with my people tonight.

And.

Yes.

Flirting with someone certainly did not hurt.

He actually asked for my number before going out to fellowship, so that made fellowship even more titillating.

I felt very alive.

I still do.

I am grateful that I get to do the work that is going to help me be a good therapist, but also have a full, well-rounded, happy life, is also a huge part of being a good therapist.

I get to model a good life, a life that I would advocate for my clients, I get to lead my own happy life, and being connected to others is a huge deal for me.

Grateful to get to balance it all out and rather awed that it worked out so well today.

Oh sure.

I had some anxiety.

I had some push back on sitting down and doing the work.

But.

I have my routine.

I said my prayers.

I did it anyway.

And two hours and eight pages later I was gleefully printing off my final paper for Trauma class.

It was an accomplishment.

I also couldn’t have done the work that fast if I hadn’t already done so much of the background work on the paper.

The same kind of work that I did for the paper that I will write tomorrow.

I have hella incentive now.

I’m up to yoga in the morning, back here, shower, breakfast, morning pages, then I’ll plunge in.

I hope to have four to five pages done by lunch time.

I’ll take a lunch break and then kick the rest of it out by 5p.m.

Just like today.

And I’ll celebrate by doing some service.

Going out to dinner.

And.

Making out after.

I can’t eat sugar, but that doesn’t mean a girl doesn’t like something sweet once in a while.

Heh.

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Jazzed

April 29, 2017

Until I look at my financial aid account, motherfucker I have sent you my Master’s Promissory Note three times, why the fuck is it not updated, where is my award?

Jesus school get on the fucking ball.

Ok.

Rant done.

I am in a good place, actually, and I should have known better than to look at my financial aid account.

I noticed yesterday that the school was still waiting on my promissory note, so I forwarded them the confirmation e-mail from the FAFSA people, you know, those good folks in government, ahem, and still, today, this morning, and again tonight, the school is “saying” they have not received it.

Sigh.

At least I am not getting too distracted by the bullshit to not focus on the stuff that really needs to be done, like my papers.

Here it is.

The weekend.

And here it is.

The last big fucking push.

I have to write two papers in the next two days.

I spent my down time, my break time at work, listening to the interview I did for my Community Mental Health class and jotting down notes and flipping through a book and post-it noting things that I am going to write about.

Basically the same process as I took for my Trauma class, but with a little less work, as there was less material to go over.

Still work.

And.

I got it done.

I have a good idea about what I will write for the paper, lots of notes, lots notations, quotes from the interview, and a good idea of what it’s going to take to do the writing.

I am not looking forward to either paper, but I shall do both of them.

I also made sure and did a grocery run today in between work and doing the deal and I have no errands that need to be run or things that need to be bought.

I am all set for the weekend.

Tomorrow I’ll go to yoga in the morning, meet my person at Tart to Tart, meet another lady thereafter, do some reading, get right with God, inventory some shit, make the head stop running for a few minutes, than jam back out here and have a late lunch and launch into my Trauma paper.

I should be able to finish it before I head out to do that thing I do in church basements, then maybe, I’ll do a little fellowship, just so I don’t feel like I’m losing my mind from the school stuff.

Then Sunday will be a somewhat similar gig, yoga in the morning, then back here, breakfast, shower, do my own morning writing and then hit the Community Mental Health paper and crank it out.

I’ll roast a chicken, because Sunday roast chicken dinner is about the way to roll and I hope that I will be done by 5p.m.

5:30 p.m. at the latest.

I have a speaking thing at 6p.m. and I really would like to be done with the papers by the point that I get on my scooter to go to the Inner Sunset.

I’m not sure how it will all work, but it will and I will get the work done.

It’s all there in my head, it’s all there in the notes, in my books, I have it all there, I just have to compile it, write it, pull the pieces together and make it look sexy.

I can’t believe I am so close to the end of my second year.

One more weekend of classes.

I’ll be turning in all projects, I won’t have any papers or things due after the last weekend of classes, which is a first and I’m super grateful for that.

And two weeks from today.

Well, ah, yes, you know, I’ll be in Paris.

Two weeks.

I’m so close.

It feels further away than that and not really real at this point my brain is super focused on the work that is in front of me and all the words that have to march across the page and get my point across.

I am also, although I gripe about what’s the point of showing up for the last couple of my classes when all the assigned work has been turned in, looking forward to a chill weekend with my cohort, it should be pretty stress free for me, I’ll have all my papers done by Sunday and I can just show up for class and be chill.

I am going to hang out with my friends, go to lunches and dinners, I have one friend who is actually going to spend the night with me next Thursday.

Little slumber party.

We’ve done it one other time and its super fun to have a school friend to hang out with.

She’ll get into town late afternoon on Thursday and we’ll meet for dinner and then pop out here to my place, it will be good to have company and bitch about school.

Although, I do want to express my gratitude for doing what I am doing and that the school is doing the best it can too, sometimes it feels like I should be getting more support, or better this, that, or the other, but ultimately, I am getting a lot of what I need and I am excited to be this far into the program and to have met and gotten to know the quality and caliber of my cohort.

They are some damn good people.

I don’t think we’re going to save the world, but I do think we are going to make it a whole lot happier, sweeter, healthier, kinder place to reside.

I’m definitely a better person for the experience of going to this school and for learning what I have learned, I have learned so much, it boggles the mind.

That I have so much more yet to learn and experience is a constant leveling of my pride, a constant learning of humility and a constant surrender.

I hope I have soften some.

That I have let you in a little more, let down the walls a little, or at least directed you to the gate and showed you that though it may be latched, it’s not locked, and I’d like to, no, I’d love to, invite you.

Come in.

Sit down.

Relax.

Get cozy.

Let’s get to each other.

I bet we have a lot to talk about.

So much.

I can’t wait.

Just let me get through this weekend and I’ll be so down to have a cuppa with you.

I can’t think of anything I want more.

Night y’all.

I have to get some rest.

I have miles and miles to go.

I can almost see the light.

Almost.

There.

 

God Damn

April 28, 2017

I got a lot of shit done today.

I am, in fact, still getting shit done.

I am cooking a pot of chicken soup as I blog.

I am trying to do some peremptory food preparation for the next weekend of school so that this Saturday and Sunday I can give my full attention to the papers that I have to write.

Speaking of writing papers.

I got a lot of my Trauma paper mapped out.

I have four pages of notes and references from four different sources all set up and notated.

In fact.

I laughed at myself when I was finished listening to the podcast for the second time (in full, a couple of the segments I listened to three or four times) and I had all my paper notes and references complied.

Fuck.

I have a 10 page paper with all the work I complied today.

The paper is 5-7 pages.

I will have more than enough material to cut a fine suit from.

I am actually excited about writing the paper, I have such a clear idea of what needs to be done, I thought about writing it tonight, however, I wanted to wait until I had a clear swath of time.

And I like to have my down time when I get home.

Of course that down time tonight includes a couple of loads of laundry and making homemade chicken soup with veggies and brown rice, but it’s not writing and focusing in a scholarly way.

I am awful proud of taking the time to do the work that needed to get done though for the paper, I spent a great deal of my breaks this week working on the Trauma material.

I will be ready to pop out that paper Saturday and then turn my full attention to the Community Mental Health project that I need to do on Sunday.

I will work on that all day Sunday, nothing else planned, on the books or off, for that matter.

Tomorrow at work during my break I will go over my Community Mental Health notes and the half hour interview I did with the program that I am writing on.

I will basically do the same thing that I did for my Trauma paper, map it out, make notes, post-it note my notes, and go back over the reading material that I am going to utilize for my paper.

I’ll provide my frame-work for the paper and then be able to sit down on Sunday and write it.

That one is 8-10 pages.

I feel like it should be the other way around, my Trauma paper has so much richness to it and so much to explore, it should be the bigger paper, but I don’t make the rules, things might be different if I did.

Ha.

I’m super grateful that it’s coming together.

As I get closer and closer to my Paris trip.

Today to incentivize myself I wore my Chanel Rouge Allure lipstick that my dear French friend gave me as a birthday present.

Nothing like getting a gift bag of Chanel makeup for a birthday.

It was such a lovely gift.

Part of me, a very large part of me, is so thrilled that I will be wearing Chanel makeup on my trip, I know it’s silly, but Chanel products are above my paygrade, so when I got them, I felt like the proverbial kid in a candy shop.

The first time I went to Paris I discovered Sephora.

Oh my god.

I wasn’t able to get myself much, I was there on the slimmest of budgets.

I remember I actually got my sister a lipstick, as they had a brand that was the same as her name, although slightly different spelling, and I got myself a set of red barrettes.

I loved those barrettes so much.

Today, when I put on the red lipstick it reminded me of those hair clips and I realized, yes, that’s definitely a souvenir I will let myself get when I am in Paris, hair clips.

Maybe some red ones like the ones I got my first time there.

It seems surreal that I will be going back.

I remember when the woman I was working with in Paris told me that it was going to be ok that I moved back home to San Francisco, that Paris would always be there, that I could come back and make another go of it.

I’m so grateful that I had my time living there and I can contrast it with the life that I built and then re-built here.

I have it really good.

Oh.

Sure.

I make half the median income that the city recommends to get by and I am taking out student loans for therapy, hahaha, but ultimately, my life is really rich.

REALLY.

Abundant.

It’s gorgeous.

I have so much.

I have an amazing job.

I have a great therapist.

I have an internship.

I get to go to graduate school in San Francisco.

I get to live in San Francisco.

I get to write every day.

What writer doesn’t long for that?

Every day.

I get to live a recovered, full, useful life.

I get to travel.

I get to go to Burning Man.

I get to ride a scooter to work.

I get free parking when I’m there.

I have laundry in the garage, I get to wash my clothes for free.

I have chicken soup cooking on the stove and hot sheets in the dryer.

I am listening to amazing music on my Macbook Air.

I have a lot.

I have happiness.

I have self-esteem.

I do estimable acts, that helps.

I have red lipstick.

I have pretty perfume.

I have love.

I have friends, family, chosen and of origin, I have my cohort.

I have Ocean Beach a hop, skip, and jump away.

I have beautiful tattoos.

I have poetry.

I have abundance, joy, happiness, freedom.

I have.

All the things.

All the things.

 

Yes!

April 27, 2017

I made it through the financial aid rigmarole.

I had to fill out one more piece of information when I got home today and finally, all of it is done.

I will be getting an award and I was notified that I would get it once the last form was filled out and sent it, that it would take 24 hours to process, I would get an award e-mail and then I hit accept.

The school will receive monies to pay for my summer practicum internship and supervision–$2380.

There will be a little left over from the award, enough to get me two more months of therapy over the summer.

I don’t have to touch my travel savings and I will have tuition paid for.

Thank God.

It all worked out.

I never really thought it wouldn’t, it was just some unnecessary stress that I got to work through.

I also spent some time checking in with my employer about summer hours, I’ll be working a little more than I do now.

Currently I’m pulling 35 hours a week, three weeks a month.

The other week during the month I work 28 hours–the week I’m in school.

During the summer I won’t have school on Fridays.

I won’t have official classes, I’ll be doing my internship at nights and on weekends and my outside supervision and therapy two days a week before work.

I ain’t gonna lie, it’s a lot to juggle.

But I see all the pieces coming together and it should work.

For my work schedule I’ll change-up to a slightly early start on the days I’m not in supervision or therapy before work and I will work 8 hour days on those days.

I’ll go from working 35 hours a week to 38 with the flexibility to go to 40 if the family needs me to.

I’ll do my internship in the evenings after work.

Four nights a week I’ll be doing the internship, and one day, Saturday.

I’ll be putting in a lot of hours, but the investment is worth it and although I am sacrificing a lot, more of my social life than I can imagine, as it’s not much at the moment, although, got to say, proud of myself for hanging out for an hour between work and doing the deal tonight.

I was so tempted to blow it off and just do my homework, but I made myself put down the books and walk to Java Beach and play a hand of Speed and socialize for an hour.

It was really much-needed.

I have been told repeatedly this week to have fun.

“Go get laid, have fun, blow off some steam!” My person told me when I met with her on Monday.

I’m trying to figure that out.

Not much by way of nibbles on the dating front and though there’s interest in me to pursue, I’m not really sure how to go about that right now.

Putting out to Universe.

I need to get laid.

There.

That should do it.

Hahahahahaha.

I actually reached out to an old lover last night and then immediately thought, ah, that’s not going to happen, why did I do that?

Not that I’m afraid of rejection, more that I can go bark up the wrong tree.

There is no squirrel there dear, go look elsewhere.

And there wasn’t.

As I have said to myself many a time, no response is a response.

My feelings are facts, but sometimes it feels like I either try to awful hard at this whole thing or I could give a fuck and I just bury myself in school and work.

There is an in between I’m sure.

Dating can also be a distraction from dealing with the thing at hand, but I am wanting to do it.

I am.

When have I not been willing to date?

I have tried lots of things.

Maybe this therapy thing will help.

Ha.

I can usually recognize when I am not on the right track, but sometimes, I get stuck and I go chase after someone and there is nothing there and I’m like, stop it, enough energy expended there.

Move on.

So moving on.

And being open to see whom God wants me to see, not whom I want me to see.

Those are different people, I am sure of it.

I’m listening to Lilac Wine as sung by Jeff Buckley.

I had to pause.

I had to sing.

I don’t even remember what I was whining about.

Luxury problems.

I’m alive.

Jeff Buckley is dead.

I saw him once.

At the Barrymore Theater in Madison, Wisconsin on tour for his album Grace.

It was one of the best concerts I have ever seen.

There are concerts that I remember because of the power of the music or that something momentous happened, or because of whom I was with when hearing he music.

Jeff Buckley touring for Grace.

Soul Coughing, Ruby Vroom.

Beck, Odelay.

Paul Simon and Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys, Summer Fest in Milwaukee, 2001.

J. Davis Trio, at the Angelic, but also the show in Chicago where I got so trashed I was hung over for two days.

But my God it was worth it.

Anni DiFranco, Not a Pretty Girl, Civic Center, Madison.

Primus, Coliseum, Madison, WI, can’t remember if it was Sailing the Seas of Cheese tour, but I think it was.

Moby, Play, Civic Center, Madison, WI, and also Moby at Lightening in a Bottle three years ago, I was up front and it was amazing, I felt like I was on fire with the music.

Underworld, the Fox in Oakland and also two years later at the Warfield in San Francisco.

Paul Simon at the Greek Theater last summer.

Mike Doughty, three times, small show at Cafe Montmarte in Madison, his first solo tour after Soul Coughing broke up and he heckled my friend who was shrooming.  Then the show at the Fillmore when he covered Ruby Vroom and I was the only person in the audience that caught the Edna St. Vincent Millay reference, and got a smile and shout out for that.  And last summer the 2016 Living Room tour where I got to meet him in person, and talk about Burning Man.

Spearhead in Madison, Wisconsin, I forget the venue now, but they were on tour for their second album and Michael Franti pulled me up on stage and danced with me for a song.

Tori Amos, Little Earthquakes, Barrymore Theater, Madison, Wisconsin.

Nine Inch Nails, Pretty Hate Machine, Coliseum, Madison, Wisconsin.

Sleater Kinnery at Union South, UW Madison Campus, holy shit was that amazing, they were just on the floor, no stage, four mikes and a couple of amps.

I went to a lot of shows in Madison.

Goldfrappe at the Fillmore.

Gary Newman, also at the Fillmore, here in San Francisco.

I’ve clubbed a lot here in San Francisco too, so many djs–Mark Farina, Teisto, Sasha and Digweed, Paul Van Dyke, Oakenfold, Kid Beyond, BT, Dmitri from Paris, Derrick Cater, Frankie Knuckles, Sunshine Jones with and without Dubtribe, Tortured Soul, Eric Sharp, Carl Cox, Armand Van Helden, James Ziebela, 2ManyDj’s, Basement Jaxx, fuck, I’m forgetting a lot of shows.

So much music.

I haven’t been out to enough shows.

Maybe I’ll focus on that instead of dating.

Heh.

Right now though, sleep she calls.

Homework is still on my plate and work has got to get worked out.

I’m still listening to the glory of Jeff Buckley.

Hallelujah.

 

Financial Aid

April 26, 2017

Fucking hates me.

But.

I don’t care.

I have gotten a lot more assertive in asking for help from the financial aid office at school, especially since I have had to jump through hoops that I didn’t even know were there to get what I need to get.

After innumerable e-mails I think I am almost there.

Of course there was one thing on the application that made no sense to me, not an iota and I probably filled the damn form out wrong and they won’t give me the money.

GIVE ME THE MONEY.

I need it for therapy.

That sounds a little desperate, I know.

What could be so bad that the lady has to have, HAS TO HAVE, being the operative word, therapy?

Oh, you know, sexual abuse trauma, incest, neglect, physical abuse, history of alcohol and drug abuse, poverty, racism, eating disorder.

Nothing at all that indicates needing therapy.

Ha.

I am being a little flippant.

I have addressed a lot of these issues and I have done an extraordinary amount of work on them over the years and I have done therapy before, but.

My school program requires it as a part of my degree.

And really, it does make fantastic sense, I need to have my shit taken care of so I can show up and help others take care of their shit.

It’s the classic put your oxygen mask on before helping others on the plummeting airplane.

And.

And.

AND.

I found out from my therapist today that my hours with her do actually count towards my 3,000 hours that I need to accrue to get my MFT license.

It’s going to change though, the BBS (Behavioral Board of Sciences) is going to phase that out.

By 2021 you won’t be able to count personal therapy hours toward your 3,000.

And the thing is, I want those hours to count very much, because as it turns out each hour or personal therapy is counted as three.

THREE HOURS.

Holy shit.

So.

It turns out that tonight I went into my Track My Hours app and I made sure that I was using the Pre 2021 dashboard  and I entered in my hours as my therapist suggested I do and voila!

15 more hours.

I have had, after today, five sessions with her.

Multiply that by three and I now have 16 hours.

There is was in black and white.

Valid hours: 16.

Total hours to accrue: 2,984.

Fuck yeah.

I will take that.

This is going to be huge and such a help to be able to acquire the hours.

My therapist went through the same program that I am doing and we talked a lot about the process and I was so freaking grateful to be seen and have my experience validated, especially in regards to the financial aid stuff and when she said, oh yeah, these hours count, you’ll have your 3,000 by 2021, you’ll be able to use your personal therapy and all you need is for me to sign a piece of paper with my MFT license on it.

Such a huge gift to find this out.

And.

She also suggested that I actually do talk to my offsite supervisor about my work as a nanny, considering how much time I have spent in the heart of so many families, that I actually may be able to get some of my child and family hours covered.

I would never have thought of it, I had a teacher who told me she thought nannies should get hours accredited to them, considering how nannies tend to be involved in a lot of family dynamics and bear witness to children and how they grow and learn, that it would make sense to grant nannies some hours.

I mean.

Fuck.

I’m going to at least check it out with my supervisor.

It’s probably unlikely, but hey, I do have over a decade of work with children and families, that kind of work experience should count for something.

And it does.

My therapist validated that today too, that I have been doing this work for a very long time, that I have, in essence been learning how to be a therapist for years.

She’s right.

It’s nice to let someone be right.

It was nice to be seen too, we have a good connection and I am so grateful for the sessions.

I already can tell that things are working themselves out and it’s an unexpected and lovely support of my experience with school and the anxiety that comes up for me when I am dealing with all things school.

I feel a lot more open with what’s happening and so grateful that I am doing the internship this summer, especially now that I know if I can all my hours by the end of 2020 I can count my therapy hours too.

Such a gift.

Just have to repeat that since I want to pinch myself and gleefully clap my hands.

Who knew?

Therapy doesn’t have to be a vale of tears.

Although.

It is also that.

A vale of tears.

I was sharing about a very sweet interaction I had with a previous charge and a gift that he had given me, a painting of my house, where I live, and this beautiful watercolor of a rainbow, “Carmen!  This is where you live!”

In a house under a rainbow, full of color and light and love.

“You had a lot of emotion come up for you when you shared that,” she said.

Understatement, pass the kleenex box please.

“Can you tell me about that?” She asked.

He saw me, this little boy saw me, and I represented love and color and joy to him, that my home, where I live is in a house full of rainbows, and if you have seen my home, well, there might be some truth to that.

What she said next I’m not sure that I could express how it landed, nor exactly what she said, but I can tell you how it felt, it felt like love, that the love in me was being reciprocated by the love in that little boy, that he saw me for who I am and he shared with me what that love looked like for him.

That we saw each other’s essence and what a gift for me to give that to him.

I had never looked at it like that and it felt.

Well it felt.

True.

It was a really lovely way to wrap up the session and I left having felt something big shift.

I don’t have to analyze it or reason it out.

I can just feel that I was seen, I was, and that I am a big fucking rainbow of love.

I’ll take it.

Thanks therapy.

I’ll take the hours too.

Only 2,984 to go.

No big deal.

Heh.

Number One

April 25, 2017

It’s official.

I have logged my first hour of supervision towards my MFT License for the state of California.

Only 2,999 to go!

Heh.

I’m so happy it’s hard to believe that I could be this excited about having to work so many more hours, free, mind you, or not free if you consider how much I have taken out in student loans to pay for the Master’s in Psychology degree that I am working on, but excited I am.

I also just set up my Track My Hours account, which is a BBS (Board of Behavioral Sciences) approved way of tracking the hours needed to get the license.

It’s happening.

I will be tracking solo supervision with my off site supervisor, once a week.

I met with him today and we talked about being in service to the client, tracking my hours, figuring out what my record keeping was going to be like, confidentiality, my time off for the week I’m in Paris (I can only miss two supervision dates for the semester, Paris will be one of them and Burning Man the other, at least for this semester), and what I want to think about or questions I may have for our next session.

I’ll meet with him two more times before I start taking clients at my internship.

There I will be accruing the majority of my hours for practicum, solo one on one client hours, child hours, couple hours, group hours.

I will also be tracking my own therapy hours, since my program requires I do 50 hours of personal therapy with a licensed MFT as well.

Tomorrow will be my fifth time meeting with her.

I am actually excited to share about getting my first hour of supervision today and what that feels like.

Exciting.

Exhilarating.

Happy.

There’s a very long way to go but I know that I need to acknowledge this milestone, it is a big one, my first hour.

It’s like the first dollar of a new business.

Especially as this is going to be my career, this is what I am doing, this is what I am, a psychotherapist.

I will be licensed and I will have a private practice.

I will also go for my PhD, because, well, I can be of more service in my community, I might as well, as my supervisor at my internship is supporting me in that endeavor.

And.

Ha.

Dr. Martines has a really fucking nice ring to it.

Don’t you think?

I’m really thrilled right now and happy.

I still have loads to do this week, two more papers to write, some more work to get out-of-the-way, but it’s happening, this is happening, one little hour at a time.

One day at a time.

Showing up and suiting up and learning.

God damn.

All the learning.

I also received a verification e-mail from my Couples Therapy teacher, my final paper made it to him.

Grateful that’s out-of-the-way.

And I got a small present, from me, to me, in the mail.

My perfume in a small travel size that I can take with me when I go to Paris.

I ordered it because I knew I would want to smell good when I’m there and it’s another little carrot for me to get the work done so I can go.

I am going to need every single second of that ten days in Paris because life is going to get really full once I get back.

I start my internship the day after I return from Paris.

I will be jet lagged as fuck, but I will be there.

I will also be in supervision that day as well, and a full day of work, and all those things.

I however will be fine.

Ten days in Paris.

So close I can taste it.

I can hear it.

I was talking to my supervisor today about it, he asked where I’m staying, how much French do I speak, what will I do.

I mean.

What won’t I do?

But first.

Here and now.

Therapy in the morning and work and having a conversation with the mom about hours for summer, the kids will not be in school and she wants me to start earlier.

And work more hours.

40 instead of 35.

I’ll be able to do it since won’t be in school.

Neither here nor there, yet.

Just on the horizon.

Day to-day I have my marching orders to get through what needs to be taken care of.

Travel perfume.

Check.

Passport.

Check.

Cute sandals for walking around Paris?

Check.

Place to stay?

Check.

I’ll be grabbing a museum pass at the airport when I fly in and I’ll be off and running, well, walking, one strolls through Paris, not runs, unless one is there to run the marathon, which I am not.

The only marathon I am going to be doing is how many museums can I get to in one day.

If done well, I can get the Jeu de Paume, the Orangerie, and the D’Orsay in one day, they’re all rather close together and accessible.

I can do the Louvre, or not, although if I have the pass I probably will, in one day, and there’s so much that to do anything else except drink coffee, is probably too much.

I’ll do the Pompidou on its own.

I’ll hit the Musee Moderne and the Palais de Tokyo on the same day, they’re right next to each other.

I might go to the Rodin museum.

I will absolutely get myself out to the LVMH that Frank Gehry designed.

And I think I may hit the Musee Marmottan Monet.

Aside from that, walks in the Marais, markets, and Claire Fontaine notebooks.

Oh.

Heh.

And a tattoo.

I will want to do that too.

Perhaps something to commemorate my first hour of supervision.

Yes.

I rather like that idea.

Anyway.

Off to have some tea and get a little rest.

I have much to do.

And do it I shall.

HOUR ONE LOGGED!

Heh.

Sorry.

Just had to say it one more time before I turn in.

It’s kind of a big deal.

 

You’re Killing Me

April 24, 2017

WordPress You’re Fucking Killing Me       *This blog written 4/23/17 while WordPress site was down.

 

I just want to write my heart out after having written 25 pages of academic writing over the last two days all I want to do is free associate my ass off and yet, again, you foil me.

My site is still inaccessible.

Sad face.

At least I found out the reason why, the site did an update to work out “some bugs” and that happened on, yes, of course, 4/20 (hmm, who was smoking the doper that day) when I was trying to post up my poetry post.

It’s the fucking 23rd and I still can’t write posts on the site.

It’s annoying and there’s absolutely nothing I can do about it.

I was able to leave a comment on the WordPress Facebook page, amongst 100s of others that I was not able to access my blog and hopefully they will get it worked out tomorrow.

I mean.

I have a big ass week ahead of me.

I have just begun the work, or so it feels, the work is always happening.

I told myself, well, I wrote to myself this morning about the work and how it would get done and that I was going to be ok and I could write the damn paper, even though it feels like all I did yesterday was work on the paper, but that was the transcription.

I reasoned with myself as I sat and did my Morning Pages that whatever happened I was ok today and was going to be ok.

I quickly listed all the things I had already done that morning—yoga, abstinent, healthy, organic breakfast, washed my dishes, took a shower, made a latte, I had prayed and made my bed, I was writing my pages, I was ok.

Further.

I was going to meet with a ladybug today and do some reading with her at a café and I had a speaking engagement that I was going to do at 4p.m.

The paper was going to get done and I would be ok.

I go through the same emotional shit every time I write a paper, at least I recognize the pattern and I do the work anyway.

In fact.

Once I was into the paper writing, after another quick prayer and putting away my dishes (got to have a clean house to write a paper), it went so swimmingly that I was startled when my alarm went off letting me know I had to head out the door to the Church Street Café in the Castro at Church and Market.

Shit!

I am almost done!

But I was ok with that, I had maybe another page to write and I was well aware that I could do that when I got home, which, of course, I did.

I was super grateful to get out of the house and to sit in a café and not talk about school stuff, oh a little snuck in, but it wasn’t too bad.

The focus was on recovery and the conversation on the reading.

Grateful.

I got to go do the deal shortly thereafter and I got the nicest compliment after speaking from someone who has seen me from the very start, I mean day one.

“Is it just me, or have you dropped your defenses a bit more?” He asked while giving me a very big hug.

“Yes,” I smiled.

“It is lovely to see,” he smiled back and walked away.

I remember him telling me years ago how defended I was and I had absolutely no clue what the fuck he was talking about.

It has taken me a long time to soften, to sweeten, to let you in.

The walls they go up now and again, but for the most part, I see that I have relaxed my vigilance and I am much more vulnerable than I was, especially in the beginning of my recovery.

I still have so far to go, but I feel it, this easing of my defenses and it is a comfort, it has been “sometimes slowly” my entire recovery and in hindsight, fucking thank god.

I also realize my tolerance for pain is much lower, my threshold will not withstand the shenanigans I used to do to keep people at arms length.

Eventually my arms got tired and I dropped them.

Only to receive more love than I could have ever imagined.

It is lovely.

Lovely to have that experience, and then hop on my scooter come home and throw a chicken in the oven and let it roast up while I was finishing my paper.

14 pages.

I finished the one page that it needed to wrap it up, proofed it, edited it, made sure I had all the important stuff the teacher wanted for it, including the correct e-mail to send to the paper to.

And voila!

It’s off into the ether and I’m done with it.

So grateful.

Super fucking grateful.

I still have two more papers I have to do.

I have cued up the next thing I need to do, listen a second time to a two hour podcast on This American Life that I will be basing my Trauma paper on, on my phone, so I can listen to it at work (although not when the little guys are home from school, not appropriate listening for them by far) and I know, know very well, that I am in it for the next week and a half.

Next weekend I will have to finish two papers.

One I will write on Saturday and one I will write on Sunday.

And then it will be done.

One more big fucking push.

And tomorrow I start supervision.

I will basically have started summer school before the spring semester has finished.

Rolls eyes.

No break for me.

Well.

Ha.

Paris.

Oh, Paris, I cannot wait.

Yesterday I wore a pair of tights I bought in the Marais the last time I was there as an incentive to get me working on the paper.

Today I wore a dress I plan on strolling the streets in.

I also have loaded Paris weather on my phone and I have been checking that.

It’s getting warmer, 70s predicted for next week.

One paper closer.

I am getting there.

Two to go.

I can do this.

I can.

Paris.

I will see you soon.

Je t’aime trop.

 

Eleven Pages of Writing

April 24, 2017

Eleven Pages of Writing. *This blog post written 4/22/17 while WordPress site was down.

 

Eleven.

And I’m not done yet.

Of course, it was the biggest part of the paper that I dealt with, the brunt of the work, but the actual paper is not written yet.

The eleven pages was transcript.

Sigh.

I hate writing transcripts.

Super grateful that it is no longer a part of my career.

I did do it once as a part of my internship when I was in the newsroom at KQED as a radio news intern.

I had to transcribe a few times for my reporters, the interns definitely got the grunt work there, that’s for sure, I recall I had to transcribe a speech that Arnold Schwarzenegger gave to the state of California when he was the governor, it might have been the worst thing I have ever done for four hours.

And although this transcription was not so difficult, it was still challenging.

It’s a lot of stopping and starting a recording.

It took hours of work and I’m grateful I did it and now I will be able to write the paper.

But.

Not tonight.

I was afraid that this might happen.

Especially when I saw how long it was taking, it just takes forever, but I did do a lot of thinking while doing the transcribing and I did get a lot of ideas down and I also made notes in the margins about what I could have done differently.

So much of that.

What I could have done differently.

I was transcribing a half hour session of a Couples Therapy mock dyad I did last Sunday with a couple of friends who helped me by-play acting being in a relationship.

They did a great job.

Me.

Not so much.

That being said I did have a few moments of headway and I did do a few things, if not well, at least not flaming bad.

I also know that I am not expected to be a fantastic couples therapist after one semester of work.

It will take time and it will take practice and this was a practice, it was not “real” therapy, it was a practice session it was for me to learn.

And learn I did.

Which is the point and I’m happy about that.

I still have to write the official paper, but I have the transcript worked out, edited and cleaned up.

I have to include ten minutes of the transcript in my paper.

I could have just listened to it, the recording, and choose a ten minute chunk, but in listening to the entire thing and typing it up as I was listening I got to see what worked well, what didn’t work, what could have worked better, and I feel like I got a deeper understanding and a deeper learning.

I’ll be able to sit down and write the paper tomorrow and it should not take more than two hours to write.

I may even pop it out in an hour and a half.

I have looked over one of my books for the class, made some notes, and I have the transcript ready.

I’ll kick it out tomorrow.

I have a few more things going on tomorrow than I did today, but I should still have the space to do the work.

I don’t feel as anxious about doing it as I did earlier this week and I know that I just have to do the slow and steady wins the race deal in regards to all the homework that I have to get through before the last weekend of the semester.

I will probably spend a little time every day this up coming week on my two other big paper projects, this paper I worked on today will be done tomorrow.

I will finish it that was the plan.

Well.

The plan was to finish it today but I didn’t take into account how long the damn transcription would be.

I think I knew it was going to be a while, which was fueling some of my anxiety around the writing, in fact, when it comes right down to it, I bet the time I took to do the transcription will actually be less than the time that I take to write the formal paper.

Speaking of writing.

Day three.

THREE!

Of not having access to my Word press site.

I do not understand what is going on with it but I can’t access it to post blogs to.

Once again I am writing my blog on my Word application and then I’ll post up to my Facebook.

I am not excited about this, but I remind myself I need to blog and I need the time to decompress and shake all the homework out of my system so I can rest well tonight, sleep soundly, get up and do it all again tomorrow.

I did a few other things than homework today, yoga class, laundry, grocery shopping, made a pot roast with root vegetables, did the deal, but did not do the fellowship after.

I thought about it.

But.

I had eaten pot roast before heading out and I wasn’t hungry and I knew that it might be better if I came home, looked over the transcript one more time, flipped through my notes and then slept on the paper.

I’m staring at the reader for the class and thinking I will also flip through it before I give it a complete rest.

The blogging helps, it really does, I’m happy to be writing regardless of my blog site being down and I am ok with the wonky look of it when I post to Facebook.

I now have three blogs that will need to post.

I will post them to the site when it’s back up, even though I’ve put them on Facebook, that way the subscribers still get to see what I’ve been up to and the site holds my drafts and it’s nicer to have them all there than here on my computer.

I can access my drafts and I can read the blog, I just can’t post.

It’s the second time, third time, maybe, that it’s happened.

Hopefully the kinks will get worked out soon.

And with that.

I have to finish up so I can go finish up the rest of my prep work for the Couples Paper.

I’m almost there, even if it feels like I haven’t even started.

I’m almost there.

I am.

Damn it.

Second Day

April 24, 2017

Second day in a row that my wordpress site is down. *This post written on 4/21/17

I can read blogs, but I can’t write them using the site.

Last night I wrote a rather long poem and I just posted it directly to Facebook.

I was very appreciative of the response I got, but it wasn’t on my blog and thus my readers who subscribe to my blog, many of whom, most of whom, are not friends of mine on social media, and they can’t read it.

I don’t like dropping my readers.

And I don’t like not being able to post.

Sigh.

Writing again in my Word application on my MacBook and I will save and hopefully post up in the next day.

I have so much writing to do and the writing that I want to do, my blogging, is not quite happening the way I had hoped it would.

I persist.

This is my place, this is my easing my mind, and this is my working it out and letting go of the day.

So.

I write.

Even if I can’t post.

I write.

It’s important to me and it’s my process and it keeps me sane, it really does.

I need sanity.

Especially after breaking down into tears at work tonight while I was cooking dinner for the family.

Work was not the problem.

Work is great.

Love my job.

LOVE.

School was the issue.

And not even homework, but the hoops for financial aid and the feeling of constantly having to navigate through the minefield of paying for the degree.

It has been a frustrating experience and it was no less so today.

I have been watching and waiting for my notification that my financial aid processed and what the award was to be and how much and let me pay off my tuition bill, which, the school never has any problem getting to me, no, no problem there, but I haven’t seen the award.

I start supervision on MONDAY.

I need to take care of this.

I did the application and all the footwork in March.

So.

I called yesterday and I got a message today telling me that they had no record of my application.

Seriously?

Fuck.

The office asked me to send the confirmation e-mail to them and so I did, and then they asked that I fill out some more paperwork.

So.

I did.

And then they gave me some very basic, very direct, step-by-step instructions of what I needed to do.

Fantastic.

Thank you.

Except.

  1. CIIS Institutional Summer 2017 Financial Aid Application
  2. Log on tofinaid.ciis.eduwith your Username and Password
  3. Select the 2016-17 Award Year from the drop-down menu at the top
  4. Complete the two-part questionnaire under the “Apply Now” tab and submit

There is no “Apply Now” tab on the page.

Fuck this crap.

There was another set of instructions that I followed to the “t” and was able to send into the school so I am hoping that will rectify the situation.

I still called and left a message.

Of course.

It’s Friday.

I won’t hear a thing back until Monday and I’m sure there will be more hoops to leap through.

At least I was able to pull it together at work, give myself a moment in the bathroom, breathe, pray and wipe away the tears.

I am not being dropped, I will be taken care of, and the money is there.

I soothed myself and got back to attending the making dinner for the family.

I was happy to be doing something active and consuming.

I was very happy to see how the kids ate up the food and the mom was happy and I got to hold the baby and I got smiles and hugs and thank you and it was all super sweet.

It was the antidote for the crazy I felt when dealing with the school.

Ultimately.

I am grateful.

I had my question responded to, I was given the information I needed, and I was able to get most of it taken care of, the rest will follow and since I did the big important stuff, which was the government loan FAFSA and they sent me confirmation emails that my application was accepted, I know that it will be done and taken care of.

Sure.

It didn’t happen my way and it was confusing and I don’t know how come I have had this experience with the school now three times in regards to my financial aid, but in the end, I have always received enough to pay my tuition and get to the next thing.

The next thing is to write my Couples Therapy paper tomorrow.

And.

As I stare at my little carrot on my desk, I see you carrot, incentive, gift, kick in the pants to get the job done and finish out the semester, I see you and I am so happy that I got you, I know I will get through this process with school.

I got a very useful item for my trip to Paris in the mail.

I received my “World Travel Adapter Kit” today.

I have always relied on friends when I have traveled to have the proper adapter for my phone or laptop and I realized it was time to be an adult about it and invest in my own.

I will only continue to travel and now I have my phone charger and my laptop charger taken care of.

All the places I can go and have my computer and my phone.

ALL THE PLACES.

China, Korea, Brazil, Continental Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong.

I can go and I will be set.

I have a few other small things that I ordered for the trip and as it gets closer I am more and more excited.

Ten days off, no work, no school.

Ten days in Paris.

All the rigmarole with school is fine, it’s working out, my work is working out—in fact I just got a very thankful and kind text message from the dad at work about the amazing dinners he’s gotten to come home to and the happy kids.

That made my day.

Grateful to get to do this work and to learn and to realize again and again that I may have fear, but I can walk through it and I can always ask for help.

Such a relief that.

I am not doing this alone.

Thank you all for your love and support.

It means the world.

A world I am very much looking forward to traveling through.

So much looking forward to.

Seriously.

 

Date Night

April 24, 2017

Date Night* Written 4/20/17 WordPress site down

 

And Debussy.

I am listening to Clare de Lune and my heart feels full.

It is a good thing.

I just got back from a date and it was really quite lovely.

Lovely is not quite the right word, I am sure I will find the correct words, they elude in this moment.

But.

There is poetry here.

Sitting by the fire.

In a space full of recognition.

The doorway after the threshold.

The moment.

The moment when.

The moment, a monument of time, a granite faced creature to scale.

In that moment when.

I looked into the eyes of those across the table and did not feel shy about my history or my lineage or my drama, trauma and crazy, when I realized I had so many words, so much to say.

I could embarrass myself with a wealth of things to say, so many words.

All the words.

Piled on the table like small crudities, rare and delicate and delicious.

A smorgasboard of words.

They tumbled from my mouth and I could tell stories.

Oh.

The stories.

There are so very many.

I don’t often have the luxury of expressing myself the way that I expressed myself tonight, and all the words lined up in my mouth, a minuet of dancing syllables and vowels that bowed and courtesy and waltzed out across the table, into the air, fragmenting into poetics and poesies.

Chains of daisies, a small girl, yellow sun dress, the kind with the little elastic ribbing and the shoulder ties in string bows, sitting cross-legged in a field.

Clover.

There.

That smell.

The one field on the drive into work.

The rich, verdant, lush, overbearing sweetness of it.

Almost, but not quite a velvet purple crocus of sweetness, but deeper, with an edge, just a tiny peppery edge, that alleviates the sweetness to make the smell palatable.

All those things.

In the cross hatch of the tablecloth.

The tea bag, white Moroccan mint.

I don’t even like mint tea.

But there I am ordering it, as my mind is not concerned with the tea.

No.

Just the company.

The stories.

The tall tales.

The tall man across the way.

A waiter takes our order.

He has blood trickling from his right nostril.

I point it out to him, he walks to the bar, wipes his nose on a napkin, returns, takes our order and brings me mint tea.

The shimmering line between strings, either ecstatic in the exuberance of the violin-cello.

Or.

Discordant, the chop of a credit card breaking piles of cut cocaine in the employee bathroom.

The whisper in the hallway of the deeds done and remembered, recalled, and integrated now, the fire in the hearth.

The echo down the history.

The pub.

Harold Pinter plays.

Shakespearean sonnets with turns in the quatrain and the final couplet sings to me of the music of the spheres and the lifting of eyes toward heavens as yet only alluded to.

“Do you ever get up early in the morning and go down to the beach and drink coffee and watch the sunrise?”

No.

I never have.

The sunrise on the beach.

The mermaids they sing each to each.

The shells in a paper sack, mussels, indigo violet, malevolent blues studded with dried seaweed, the remnants of drift wood fire.

The sunrise.

The drive up the coast.

The view of the ocean from the red checked table-cloth booth, a vinyl booth my little girl legs stick to as I wait for pancakes and syrup to be set in front of me.

The sun.

The sun in my mother’s hair, reddish fired tinge, a halo of gold in the brown, mirroring the flecks of gold in her green eyes.

Undone by the beauty of my mother I dragged my fork through the buttery stickiness and surreptitiously lick the tines to catch-all the maple sugar in my mouth.

I think kissing you would be.

So sweet.

Yes.

Down to the ocean.

To the beach.

Let us go then you and I.

I shall wear my trousers rolled.

Or at least my bib overalls, and watch the foam-flecked waves throw themselves at my feet as the sun comes up again over the promises of urchins, spiny, but broke open, buttery cream orange uni, the soul, just there.

Just there.

You will kiss me in the dunes.

And all the words will come undone.

Tossed into the sand.

Where they will stay.

Like.

Scattered dropped magnetic poetry.

On the old fridge down the hall in the artist loft.

Rearranged once in a while by the hand of a passerby.

Blue scar pretty jealous skin.

 

 


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