Posts Tagged ‘amazing’

Doing This Thing

January 10, 2018

I have officially made the decision to go after my PhD in the Transformative Psychology program at CIIS.

I talked to the dean of the school this morning and she gave me some lovely insights into the program and what I need to do to apply for the program.

I basically have it all covered except for the personal statement.

I need two letters of recommendation, one of which has to come from my academic advisor in my program–he’s confirmed that he will write me a letter and we are meeting at lunch on the first Friday of the school weekend, basically a week from this Friday.

The other letter will come from my supervisor at my practicum site, who actually offered to write me a letter before I had asked him.

I need to e-mail him and say, yes, please do write that letter for me!

In fact.

Hang on a minute, I’m going to go draft that e-mail now.

Yes.

One more thing out-of-the-way.

I was also very grateful to discover that I had been correct in the reading of the PhD application demands–the scholarly paper the admissions department requires can be one I have already written for my current program!

That is super nice.

It’s an 8-10 page paper written in APA format (American Psychological Association).

The dean expressed that they want to see an example of my writing abilities and that I could absolutely use a paper I had already written, it did not have to be an original work.

Whew.

That is such a nice relief.

I really didn’t want to have to write a paper on top of getting my stuff together for this last semester of my Master’s program.

I’ll still need to provide plenty of other things besides the sample of my academic writing and the two letters of recommendation.

There’s also the application fee, $65, so worth it, frankly.

And a resume with pertinent and relevant experience listed.

My transcripts.

I will be very happy to provide those, especially with my current 4.0 grade point average, thank you very much.

A goal statement outlining what I plan to do with the degree once it is conferred.

And.

A four to five-page personal statement.

I mean, that’s a fair good amount of stuff.

But.

Doable.

So doable.

And, as I mentioned, the not having to write a fresh academic paper for the admissions team feels really nice.

The dean told me the deadline was end of February.

Once the application is sent in the admissions team goes through the applicants and decides who they want to call in for an interview.

At which time I would need to give some ideas about what I want to pursue, although said ideas do not have to be concrete, I can change what I decide to do the dissertation on if over the course of the program I find something really amazing and compelling.

But.

I do think I have been narrowing it down and although my idea is big and there’s a lot to explore, I’m super excited by the prospect of exploring it.

I feel like it will help me heal some trauma and in turn, I hope that I will be better equipped to help others walk through their traumas as well.

I’m super happy that I have made this decision.

I felt so freaking good when I got off the phone with the dean, I knew, I just knew it is what I am supposed to be doing.

I’m supposed to get my doctorate.

I am supposed to be of service.

I get to keep learning and growing.

It is fucking exciting.

A little scary too, but I don’t feel it will be that much harder than the work that I have done to get my Masters.

In fact, in some ways I think it will be easier.

The classes are self-directed and timed, I won’t be going into a classroom, I’ll be doing the work on my own, I’ll have my own agency to move at my own pace.

I suspect that I will want to move faster rather than slower.

The dissertation could take longer, the program is designed to be done in two years, but I sense that more than a few folks take longer to get to the dissertation.

I don’t want to do that.

Not to be worried about at this point.

I have taken as much action today as I possibly could in regards to the next steps.

I went to therapy this morning before work.

I went grocery shopping after therapy and managed to have the call with the dean of students from my car before I went into work.

I worked a full day.

Then.

I went and saw two clients this evening.

I e-mailed my supervisor at my practicum site for the letter of recommendation.

And.

I filled in a few more things on the doctoral application.

My god.

I’m really going to do this.

I am going to get my PhD.

Fuck.

My life is amazing.

AMAZING.

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Saturday Afternoon Sad

October 30, 2016

It’s been a sad day or so for me.

The sads, they caught up with me.

They had a tea party with the sorrowfulls and the woefulls.

They had a big cup of cafe au lait with the maudlin and the melancholic.

And then they moved the fuck on.

Like the grey scuttling clouds dusting me with blurry tears of rain on my scooter as I zoom zipped up Lincoln Avenue to meet my person at Tart to Tart.

She sat down across the table from me and cocked her head, “are you crying?  Have you been crying?”

Ugh.

Yes.

Off and all since yesterday.

There are reasons.

And there are reasons.

And there is a season to my sorrow and it will pass.

If I let it, if I talk through it, let it out, cry a little, laugh a little, tears sliding down my face just as my tender footed heart does a drop kicking curtsey of pain through the goal posts of my soul, I put my head on the table and collapsed for a moment.

“What’s going on?” She asked me.

I told her and cried.

I got it out and cried.

We talked and talked and thank God I have her in my corner, thank God for her experience, strength, hope, for her guidance and perspective.

“Of course you’re sad,” she said, “let it out, but don’t wallow in it.”

We talked about things I could do.

Basically nothing.

Well.

That’s not true.

I have to surrender people, places, and things, I have to let them go, I can’t control situations, I can’t control people, I can’t make the trains run on time.

I am just not that fucking powerful.

What I did do though was take her suggestions to do some writing and also to be gentle with myself and do something nice for myself.

I text my friend and said, “hey thanks for the Ghost Ship pass offer, but I’m going to rescind my ask, I’m too emotional to be in a big crowd with loads of drinking and drugs.”

I needed to be with my people tonight.

My fellows.

My fellowship.

My friends.

And I was.

But.

Before I got there I decided to celebrate me.

My life.

My recovery.

My sobriety.

Because without that I would have nothing.

And I am so very grateful, so overwhelmed with the awe of it that I am still here, still sober, still doing the deal, still showing up, that I needed to do something special and just for me.

I went to the MOMA.

I had a quick-lunch at La Fonda Mexican Grill, carnitas anyone?

Then scootered down town.

The traffic wasn’t bad and the last bits of rain had cleared.

I parked in the motorcycle parking just off Minna Street and popped into Blick, the art supply store and yes.

I bought myself stickers.

Because a girl likes stickers.

And I wanted to give myself the little things that mean something to me, I’ll write every day for weeks in my notebook in the morning and every day I will put down a little sticker in the margin and it will remind of the day, the moment, the heart-felt sorrowful tears and also the gratitude and joy of being alive and on my scooter in my pink lady motor cycle jacket.

I mean.

I used to use and drink in that neighborhood and to see where I am now in comparison to where I was, it’s a fucking miracle.

I am not exaggerating.

Not a bit.

Not a tad.

Not at all.

I am a fucking miracle.

My life is extraordinary.

Miraculous.

Awe-motherfucking-some.

Sure.

I have feelings.

And I can swim in them.

Or.

I can be a light.

I can be a beacon and I can shine.

Maybe some will be draw to that light.

Maybe.

I got my stickers and went to the MOMA.

I stood in the short line, the members line, and got my ticket.

I asked what was the favorite thing in the museum for the desk person.

He told me about the Bruce Connor exhibit.

It was exquisite.

There were so many mediums the artist worked in it was enthralling to see the breadth of his work.

I watched a few films, I stood in front of photographs and felt wonder.

I felt awe.

I felt warm and held.

I felt safe.

The MOMA was always my safe place when I was using.

I used to work at a high-end fancy pants restaurant around the corner and I would drink in the neighborhood, I knew the industry people, I went to the Palace, House of Shields, The W Hotel, Dave’s on 3rd.

I did cocaine in all the places at any of the times I could get my nose into it.

Shit.

I did key bumps in the bathroom at Starbucks.

But.

I could never bring myself to use in the MOMA.

It was sacred.

This church of art.

My first home, the first thing I did when I came to SF, I went there, I wanted to see the art, I wanted to walk the Occulous Bridge, I did so again today, I got a membership.

I have a membership again and the skeleton of the museum is there, nooks and crannies that remind me of the horrors of dancing along the skein of insanity that threatened to entrapped me as I hollowed out my soul using and drinking.

But now.

Well.

Now.

All gratitude.

All the love I have for myself, the awe I felt when I bought a postcard from the gift shop that was a photograph from the Bruce Connor show that was a street graffiti that side “love” where it should have been a right turn arrow on a street in Oakland.

That was the only thing I bought at the gift shop.

I am a museum gift shop junkie.

I like to get my magnet or my postcard.

Today, though.

Shit.

I almost bought a Polaroid camera!

There is a company, I did not know, that when they heard that Polaroid was no longer going to make the instant camera and film, stepped in and bought the processing plant and the equipment.

It’s called The Impossible Project.

I was pretty smitten.

I mean.

I almost did it.

I almost bought it.

The camera is actually not that expensive.

$150.

The film is a bit though, $20 per packet and you get 10 Polaroids.

I waffled.

I just paid rent.

But.

Heh.

My birthday is coming up and I resolved that I will get myself one.

I would love to bring it to Paris with me in spring.

How amazing would that be?

I also will be getting another camera, a point and shoot digital to replace the one that I finally broke at Burning Man this past burn.

A Fuji Fine Pix.

I priced them about a month ago and they’re a bit expensive, but the one I had before last me 9 years!

I took it with me to 7 Burning Man’s, to Paris three times, Rome once, London once, New York, Los Angeles, I literally took over 10,000 pictures with it.

I probably took triple that, I just realized.

My photo library has over 10,000 photos.

And I am a mean editor, I delete the shit out of my photos, so yeah, I probably shot over 30,000 photos with that camera.

I’ll be getting another one of those, yes please, and thank you.

But.

The Polaroid.

Well.

It truly called to me.

Whispering sweet secrets of my seventies childhood.

I always wanted one when I was a kid.

I never asked.

I didn’t think I would ever get one.

I remember when my cousin got one.

Christmas I think.

That could have been the year that my mom told my sister and I that there was no Santa Claus.

See.

My cousin’s parents were going through a divorce and man oh man was she getting the spoils.

My mom was poor.

God we were so poor.

And there was certainly not going to be a Polaroid under the tree.

We were living with my aunt and my cousin at the time.

My sister shared a room with my mom or my cousin, I can’t remember.

And I slept on a mattress in the basement.

It was horrible.

And there was no Santa Claus.

No.

NO there was not.

So this year.

Hey Santa, I’ve been a really good girl and I’m super grateful for my life and my sobriety and all the amazing things I get to do and be and well, it might help the sadness you know.

If I got a new camera instead of coal.

I know.

It’s early.

But you know me.

Always looking ahead.

Yet.

When I stop and pause and breathe.

I see.

That I have been given the best gift.

The most amazing gift.

The awareness of grace and how I have been snatched from the jaws of insanity, psychosis, and terror.

Hospitals.

Institutions.

Death.

I am grateful beyond my ability to express.

And when I sat on the top of the infinity fountain that spans the view of Yerba Buena park, across from the MOMA, I basked in the sun.

I basked in the light.

I pulled out my postcard.

“Just look how far you have come,” I wrote.

I printed my name and address and stuck a stamp in the corner and dropped it in the mailbox on the corner of 3rd and Mission Street.

Thank you God for my amazing life.

I really am.

The luckiest girl in the world.

Even when I am sad.

Most especially then.

It’s ok.

Because.

I know that I am loved.

 


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