Posts Tagged ‘Glenn Ellen’

OMFG

August 20, 2016

OHMYFUCKINGGOD.

OHMYFUCKINGGOD.

OHMYMOTHERFUCKINGGOD.

Did I read that right?

I think I had to read the message three times because I couldn’t fucking breathe and then I was on the phone so fast it was ridiculous.

To whit.

The following (with certain bits and pieces deleted for anonymity sake) is the message I received this morning.

(This morning when I woke up mildly anxious to figure out how I was going to get off playa.)

Carmen; This is ______, T’s friend from J’s birthday (leader in _______)
 
T told me that you need a ride back from the playa Wednesday
 
We have a commercial pilot in camp, he is bringing his 3 seater personal Cessna
 
He’s flying out Wednesday to the Bay Area to pick up our camp lead’s son and he has a seat on the plane (only room for a small bag so you’d have to send your stuff home with someone else outside of our camp)
 
wanted to offer you this option as your first playa gift…. call me 123-456-7890 if you are interested ❤
Am I interested?
Oh holy sweet Jesus, of course I’m interested!
I don’t think I have ever gotten on a phone so fucking fast in my life.
It rang through and the next thing you know we are chatting like the old friends, as it turns out, old alumni!
She went to UW Madison like me, graduated a year after me, knew all the old haunts, Essen Haus, Angelic Brewing Company, and had in fact, almost not answered the phone because she thought it might be someone soliciting donations from the UW Alumni fund.
I still have my old 608 number from Wisconsin.
Hehehehe.
It was just the most astounding, amazing, over the top offer.
I can’t freaking believe it was offered, that I was given such a gift.
I’m fucking FLYING back from the Black Rock City Airport to an as of yet undisclosed Bay Area airport.
It’s a small plane, so I don’t believe it can land at SFO.
And frankly, I don’t care, I can get a bus, a train, a Lyft, a ride from so many places once I’m back in the area, I am so not worried about that part.
The only hitch is that I have to get someone to bring my gear back from playa to San Francisco.  It’s not much, but it’s stuff, tent, a few bins, a cooler, my air mattress, a folding camp chair.
I will start putting the feelers out tomorrow.
I just didn’t have the band width to do it today.
It was just a great big day all around.
I couldn’t even post it up to social media for a while because I was afraid the offer might suddenly poof!  Disappear and it was just all a figment of my very fertile imagination.
I told a few friends first.
That was fun.
The first person I told was my friend who happened to have coffee a few days back with the lady who gifted me the ride, she told me what had gone down.
They were talking all things Burning Man and my dear friend (who I happened to meet at Burning Man 9 years ago this burn!) mentioned that I was going and that I had to come back early from the event, Wednesday, to be in the city for my school program and that she had no idea how I was going to manage that.
I wasn’t doing too bad on that front, actually.
I had a friend at school offer to pick me up in Reno and get me back from there if I couldn’t find a ride, she would leave for school a day early–she commutes in from Reno–to get me.
I would just have to figure out how to get off playa, get my gear in someone’s vehicle, and manage to connect somewhere in Reno.
Tough.
But not impossible.
Then of course, the impossible happened.
When I talked with my new friend on the phone, go Badgers!  She told me the story and then said, “well, I knew how you were going to get home,” and that’s when she message me.
She was, I swear, almost as happy to gift it to me as I was to receive the gift.
Although, I feel I might have a little edge on being overwhelmingly happy with the turn of events.
Fuck me.
I’m flying home in a Cessna!
I love airplanes.
I love flying.
I secretly would love an airplane someday.
A pilot’s license would be awesome.
I have been up in airplanes before at Burning Man.
I met and befriend a gentleman who goes be Blind Pilot a few years ago and got to go up not once, but twice in his plane.
The thought of getting to fly all the way back to San Francisco is just amazing to me and feels like the chance of a lifetime.
I told a friend tonight and she freaked out a little, “wear a helmet!”
Giggles.
I’m not scared of flying.
I’m just that type of person.
And if I don’t wear a helmet when I’m riding my one speed whip around San Francisco I certainly don’t expect or plan on wearing one in a plane, regardless of how small it is.
I’m so psyched.
I’m so grateful.
I had these moments today that just blew fairy dust and sugar crystals deep, deep, deep into my heart.
Oh, Burning Man, how do I love thee.
Year ten.
Amazing, that.
It’s going to be short, just a four day shot, but my God, it’s really shaping up to be a fantastic burn.
I have some packing to do this weekend, but I’m ready for it, I have a clear schedule with few responsibilities after having canceled my date (which doesn’t mean I’m not up for a date, I just wasn’t able to quite match the schedule of the person who wanted to see me).
I do have to go back to Glenn Ellen on Monday.
I have the option of going on Sunday night, but I think I’m going to let myself sleep here Sunday night and just get up early and commute to work against the traffic.
It should be easier going out of the city.
Not that I’m even going to bother worrying about that.
It’s Friday.
I’m home for the weekend.
And I got a fucking FLIGHT back from the playa.
Luckiest girl in the world.
For real.
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Limbo Land

August 19, 2016

At least it has a pretty moon.

I stopped my car, my cute little VW rental in powder blue, on the down slope of the road.

Sonoma Mountain Road.

To pause, stop, appreciate the beauty of the big, full, pumpkin orange moon in the sky, peeping through the trees.

I took a photograph with my phone.

Perhaps not the best way to capture that glory, but a small remembrance of the moment, a stop, a pause, push the reset button and breathe.

I’m out of town.

I’m out of my element.

I’m in Glenn Ellen.

I’m doing the travel nanny gig in the hills replete with vineyards and blackberry brambles.

It is a pretty place.

I keep using that adjective, but it is apropos.

As I drove off the property headed to Sonoma proper, the town, not the mountain road, I caromed around the corners and marveled that this was my life.

I was a little sad, I’m not quite sure why, a sweet sad song on the radio perhaps, a hint of melancholia, a wish to be with someone, other than my lonesome, but I gently reminded myself that though lonely in the moment, I am really never alone.

The sun slanted ahead of me, as it was going down in the West and I was heading East, splashing a gold liquid shine onto the trees and the hills and the dry yellow grass.

It’s drought time up here.

Has been for a while.

But even with the absence of moisture, there was no absence of beauty.

I was also deeply reminded that I am a California native.

I was born here.

And though I was raised for a good part of my life away from it, it speaks to me in murmurs and memories, it has seared itself into my being and my first senses and experiences happened here in the Golden State.

The synchronicity of it did not escape me, the almost deja vu like experience of driving in a VW Bug down twisty roads in the golden highlighted moment of the day right before dusk falls and the sun sets.

My mom’s boyfriend when I was a young girl had a VW Bug.

I have many memories of being in that little car.

Which was not so little when I recall it.

I used to ride around in the back, lying on the shelf between the back seat and the window.

They didn’t give a fuck so much then about car seats and seat belts.

I would watch the sky overhead pass and the clouds too, would impress themselves upon me, layering me with all good things, all things California.

I took many naps in the back seat of that car.

The rental car handled beautifully and hugged the corners and seemed to almost drive itself.

It took me a minute to get used to craning all the way around to make sure I was backing up well and that there were different blindspots to the vehicle than in other cars I have driven.

But.

It has begun to feel like home.

Being in that car.

Transported from this house in Glenn Ellen and back out into the world.

I did not want to return.

There was a moment, unacknowledged while in it, but there nevertheless.

I can feel it in my heart.

When I thought, I just might keep on driving.

Take it for a spin down the coast, ramble about the state, fuck the job, don’t come back, see you later, alligator.

Of course.

I did no such thing.

Rather I zoom zipped over to Sonoma to the clubhouse there and got right with God.

Brief pit stop at the Whole Foods to pick up some hair conditioner since I have run out and a couple of late season white nectarines.

One more day.

Then I’ll be back to the city for the weekend.

I canceled on a date I had for this Sunday.

Not sure I can afford the time to hang out and also, oh man.

I have to pack for that thing in the desert.

All my friends be like packing maniacs right now and I am stuck, in limbo, in Glenn Ellen, mentally going over what I have to do.

I was hoping to do a dry run on my tent, but I don’t think it’s going to happen.

I’ve got bins to fill.

Clothes, gear, this and that, stuff and things.

I ordered a few more things on Amazon this past week to make sure I wouldn’t have to run around willy nilly in my last hours to gather supplies.

See I have to pack this weekend, there is no other time.

I’ll be back here, in Glenn Ellen, either Sunday evening or early Monday morning for one more work week before I go.

I’ll work up until 6p.m. on Friday, then speed on out of town, drop the rental car back at SFO, catch a hired car back home, pee, then pack my cooler and smash everything into my ride share to the playa, who’ll be picking me up at 8:30p.m.

We will be driving all night to end up on the playa Saturday morning.

I hope to get my tent and such set up before it gets too hot and then sleep through the worst of the heat.

I have evening plans.

Yeah, ahahahaha, plans at Burning Man.

But I do.

A girl friend is having a birthday party and I’m a going.

I can’t wait.

I will get dressed up.

In what?

Who the fuck knows, but dressed up I will.

And I get a head of myself.

Pull back.

Pause.

Breathe.

Because I am still here, in Glenn Ellen.

Still doing my homework and reading and keeping up with all things graduate school.

Because that’s happening too.

I have two papers to write before I leave for playa and a lot of reading to do.

Not as bad as last year, but enough.

All the things.

They will get done.

Or.

They won’t.

Either way.

I’m alright and the moon, like a quiet place to rest in the sky, my pillow of beauty to lay my cheek against, moves asunder and smooth through the night.

My heart a float.

Here and now.

Here and now.

Here.

And.

Now.

My Body Hurts

August 16, 2016

My brain hurts.

Everything hurts.

I am not sure why.

It’s not sick hurt.

It’s like I slept on my back hurt in a strange way.

But I slept like a baby, like a tired baby with hot milk in its belly.

In my own bed for the first time in eight days.

I remember putting my head on the pillow and rolling over and I was out.

I mean.

OUT.

I woke up to go to the loo at some point.

I think.

I mean, I usually do, as I like to have a cup of tea before I hit the hay, but I don’t even remember if I did, it was just an assumption.

I woke up when my alarm went off and got moving.

Now that I remember it, I did feel sore when I woke up, but I think I just shrugged it off.

And perhaps it’s tension or psycho-somatic, or who knows, I certainly don’t have to figure it out, but it is certainly there.

And there is no sleeping in my sweet, cozy, dreamy little studio tonight.

No.

I have made my return to Glen Ellen, to Stone Tree, to a week of being in Sonoma, but instead of being in Petaluma, I am at work.

The family’s vacation spot for the summer.

It’s not a bad bed and fuck, the room I have is huge, I mean, really gigantic.

Bigger than my in-law, that’s for certain.

It’s just not my bed.

I will be wrangling up some ibuprofen in a little while, after I blog and make a cup of tea and I think, yes, an episode of Mr. Robot.

I tried to do some Burning Man stuff, order a few last minute things, but I found I didn’t have the focus in me to do so.

I just paid my phone bill and that was all the online activity I could handle, no Amazon shopping for me tonight.

I made it out here ok, although there was a bit of a miscommunication between me and the mom and I didn’t realize that I didn’t have to lock up the house after letting in the housekeeper.

So I was in and around the Mission for many unnecessary hours.

That being said, I made an appearance at one of many fine church basements in the Mission and got right with God.

I figured, a week out of town, a week away from my fellows, from my favorite cafes and food and San Francisco, from my bed, my home, my things, was going to warrant a little getting steady with my emotional, mental, and spiritual needs.

I will be getting compensated for the additional money I had to spend on the rental car, which is nice, but I haven’t had the opportunity to speak with the parents about it.

The conversation happened via text this morning while I was at the house waiting for the cleaner to show up.

And today when I got there.

Well.

I was too busy catching up with the boys who wouldn’t let go of me.

Dinner was had with one leaned against me and the other in my lap, there was no removing myself.

The youngest was such a little darling, he was napping when I showed up and dad had to run to town on an errand, the older boy and mom were out, and it was just the little guy and me and the dog.

Said dog who was so happy to see me it made my heart warm and fuzzy.

When he woke up, the look on his face, incredulous joy.

“Surprise,” I said softly, touching his sweet face, and wiping his little sweaty brow.

He sleeps hot.

“Carmen!  Oh, Carmen, I missed you, I want to go pick tomatoes with you in the garden and make you a salad,” he said all warm and soft and cuddly and my god, my heart.

So much.

So much love.

He crawled into my arms and wrapped himself around me and told me how much he missed me and how much he loved me, and then he took my hand and we walked to the garden and picked tomatoes off the vine and fresh basil.

When the oldest boy got back, he proudly showed me all the places they had picked blackberries and then insisted that we go back up to the garden and pick even more tomatoes, because he too, missed me, loved me, and wanted to make me a tomato salad.

They remembered from last year.

The tomatoes were out of hand and I probably ate two or three each meal, mostly chopped up with sea salt and olive oil, black pepper, lemon balm (it’s a type of herb), oregano, and fresh basil, splash of balsamic and I am a very happy girl.

Both the boys helped me make the salad and then they both ate out of my bowl and dredged their fingers through the olive oil and vinegar and ate bites of grilled chicken off my plate and just were relentless with touching me, cuddling with me, sitting on me.

“Carmen,” the oldest boy whispered to me, “please massage my back again,” he said, then tugged on my hand, when I had stopped to take a bite of dinner.

I melted, just a little bit.

Ok.

A lot bit.

We sat chair to chair and while his brother basically licked the bowl clean, I rubbed his shoulders and told him about my graduate school adventures and the animals I saw at the institute–hawks, the deer, the does and their fawns, the jack rabbit in the grass, the ears so high and big.

I tried to get a photograph of it, it was just huge, but it loped off into the high grass before I was able to get my phone up and open to the camera.

After dinner, which began to devolve, I think the eldest has a bit of a cold he’s struggling with, I let the boys smack me with pillows.

I had a sense that though they were not necessarily mad at me, there was a need to be a little aggressive with their feelings, get out some of the consternation and energy from not getting to see each other for the two weeks I was away from them.

They had missed me and they had feelings around it and they needed to express that too, not just the snuggly love stuff, which not withstanding was divine to experience, so a pillow fight ensued.

And it was absolutely the best.

I set a timer and let them hit me with pillows for three minutes solid without defending myself or hitting them back with the couch pillows.

It was so much fun.

The giggles.

Mine and theirs.

Then, when the alarm rang, we all just collapsed in a heap on the couch and snuggled more.

I was with them far past what should have been my end of day, but I couldn’t resist catching up and re-connecting.

I’ll be here until Friday.

Drive back into SF in the evening then have the weekend in town.

I’ve got some organizing to do in regards to Burning Man, then depending on what next week looks like, I’ll be heading back to Glenn Ellen in the evening on Sunday, I think, for one more week of summer vacation travel nanny fun.

Then off to Burning Man next Friday.

Oof.

Not quite ready yet.

But not really able to do anything more tonight.

Too tired to figure it out right now.

Time for Mr. Robot, I’m into the second season now, cup of tea, apple, bed.

Night y’all.

See you on the flip.

Hello Again

August 15, 2016

My friend.

I have missed you.

I have missed my bed.

I have missed the smell of my home.

I have missed the fog.

Not really, but it certainly felt like I was being lovingly, if in a rather chilly, cold, wet way, embraced with wide open arms.

My heart blew open a little wider as I saw the Golden Gate Bridge after coming out the other side of the Robin Williams tunnel.

Which I had not been through since it had been re-named and it gave me a pang of sorrow still at the loss of the man to this community, here in the Bay and all over the world, I suppose, but especially here.

Then the sweep and the swoop of the Industrial Orange painted bridge and the wallops of fog blowing in.

I reached into my bag and pulled out my cardigan and glad was I that I had remembered to put it in with my bag before leaving the school retreat in Petaluma.

Which, fyi, is not a retreat.

I got a chuckle from a message I received while I was crossing over the bridge in regards to how was my weekend of getting seaweed wraps and mud baths.

Ha.

I repeat.

It’s not a fucking retreat people.

My friend who gave me a ride back from the “retreat” said, “I just tell people it’s an intensive,” he added, “retreat means spa time to every one.”

And granted.

This year was certainly easier than last year.

For a number of reasons.

Amongst which, probably the top was that I know my cohort and I’m close to them and I have some really awesome and amazing friends, two of whom I got to bunk with for the eight days and it was so nice, really, awesome, to get to spend the week with them.

To check in, to chat, to snuggle, to walk hand in hand with my girls.

It was fucking fabulous.

It was also really nice to get re-connected to a lot of the cohort and also to make new friends, strengthen bonds and deepen friendships that have begun to bloom.

I had some intense, amazing, awe inspiring, very eye opening experiences and I have now a stronger sense of what I want and what I need from the program and also for myself in general, from life, from my heart, and I feel an easiness and grace that I did not have quite so much before going into the retreat.

Er.

Intensive.

I mean.

Really.

9:15a.m. to 9:15p.m. every day.

Except today, we got out early at 4:15p.m.

Yes.

Of course I had breaks for meals and tea and wanders, short, but sweet through the garden and a couple of times in the hot tub.

Yeah.

There’s a great big hot tub there, I think the most crowded I saw it was about twenty people.

The effort for me, though, felt like a lot to get in and out and shower and dress and undress and sometimes, most times, I just skipped it.

But.

I did socialize more, I hung out more, I connected more with the cohort and I feel stronger for it, more supported.

I had some work stuff come up and I got to work through it and do some stuff for myself that I’m not sure I could have done on my own.

Sometimes I just need a friend to help me write an e-mail, or tell me it is not just ok, but really important to ask for what I need.

There will be some conversations with my bosses tomorrow.

It’s been a strain and I’m not really through it yet and honest to God, I’m too tired to think about it or do anything about it right now, but it basically comes down to proper compensation for the accommodations I am doing for the family.

In a nutshell, renting the car for the trip was a bit of a shit show despite the help I got in regards to getting the car rented.

It all worked out and I’ll be driving for the next two weeks an adorable light blue VW Beetle.

It is so stinking cute it’s sort of hard to even describe it.

The gentleman at the car rental place was so sweet with me and totally helped me out, I was having a bit of a melt down.  The original rental was through Enterprise, my boss had made the reservation.

But guess what?

They don’t take debit cards.

I was hyperventilating at the desk.

Tired.

I was so tired.

Gestalt’ed out from all the work at school and in class and all the processing, jesus fuck there’s a lot of fucking processing in this program.

Sometimes it took every bit of me to not shout, shut the fuck up!

Enough fucking processing people.

But.

I didn’t and I learned to soften and ease up and let go and work, I mean really work, on judgements and projections and all sorts of super psychological stuff.

Stuff.

Yeah.

Real technical I am.

I also laughed my ass off, slight aside, when I got home to find the book for the class that I was taking all this past week had finally showed up.

A day late, and a dollar short, as they say.

But I’ll be taking it to Glen Ellen in my spiffy little blue Bug, I still have to write a final paper for the class.  The other class I took the final exam in yesterday, Ethics, and I got 100%.

Thank you, thank you very much.

Back at the car rental desk and trying to not cry, I might have put my head down on the desk, or maybe I just thought about it, I asked, what other companies there were at SFO and if I could rent from and have them cancel the car I was supposed to take to Glenn Ellen.

There was such a place!

I dashed down to flights of stairs, bombed through the queue and got the sweetest guy, who was so accommodating and helpful and dropped a huge amount of money on my debit card to rent the car.

It was obscene.

I don’t want to think about it.

And.

Then I thought about how I get to learn to value myself more and my time more and how lucky am I that even before I am a therapist, even before I go for my PhD, because, oh yes, that is happening, more on that later, I get to learn how to set boundaries, ask for what I want and practice conflict and repair.

I have to ask for my time to be compensated.

I have to set some boundaries and what ever happens, no matter how uncomfortable, I just need to go for it, because I can’t handle the the transgressions on my time and energy any more.

Oh.

And yes, I’m in the market for a new job.

I think that it’s time to return to babies and families that work out of the house.

I need some simplicity and a returning to the land of baby sounds really delightful.

Big, fat, delicious baby naps.

So I can read, and start preparing for my next steps in my academic career.

Like, um, the PhD track I’m going to be on.

Yes, yes indeed.

Dr. Martines.

Has a mighty nice ring to it, doesn’t it?

I like it anyway.

And I’m happy.

Oh so happy.

To get to do all the things.

REALLY.

All the things.

 

Just Add Another

July 20, 2016

Thing to an already full plate.

But fuck it.

I signed up for an American Red Cross CPR/First Aid/AED child/infant/adult class for the last day of the month.

I don’t have any free time really in August.

August is going to be interesting.

And actually I do have a couple of odd free dates in the first week of August, so if you want to hang out and you’re not doing anything the 2nd, 3rd, or 4th, hit me up.

We can do the MOMA.

Get coffee.

Hang out.

Make out.

You know.

Whatever.

Heh.

My certification lapses at the end of this month so I was trying to book in for one of those days that I will be free, but the classes weren’t available and I ended up having to sacrifice a Sunday afternoon for the class.

That being said, it may work out just right for me.

I was thinking I would do the class, then grab a BART and take the train over to Oakland and go to a friend’s housewarming/engagement party.

Looks like a lot of my friends will be there and since I’m already downtown, the BART doesn’t seem all that untenable and it will be nice to get out of the fog and be in the sun, catch up with old friends and see my friend’s house.

It’s hard to believe that I am making plans for the end of July and that August is like right there.

August looks like this: school retreat, out of town working for the family as they spend a couple of weeks in Sonoma at Glenn Ellen, then BurningMan, then back and right into the September with a Mike Doughty show on the 1st and my first weekend of school on the 2nd.

The month is like booked.

Crazy.

I reflected earlier though that August for me, even when I wasn’t in school, has always been pretty booked.

At least for the last nine years it has.

Burning Man takes up a lot of head space, physical space, preparation space, emotional, spiritual space, space space.

It just is a lot.

I have no answers still in regards to rides and shelter and this and that.

But.

I did get a notification from UPS that my signature was going to be required for a package delivery tomorrow.

Of course I’ll either be at work or I’ll be at a morning yoga class.

Which I committed to going to, so maybe I should go sign up for that.

Hang on.

Ugh.

It’s not a teacher I’m very fond of.

However.

It’s yoga and I’m going.

Done.

I’m working a slightly different schedule tomorrow so that the mom and dad can double date with some friends.

The said 8/8:30p.m.

So I’m just preparing myself for 9p.m.

Although still hoping it will just be 8p.m.

Then I can make my evening commitment at 8:30p.m.

But if I can’t make it, I wanted to make sure that I did something outside of work other than work, thus yoga.

And it’s good to be as regular as I can with it, I can tell it in my body now and I like how I feel when I’m getting to regular classes.

Three is the optimal, though I would like to be doing four classes a week, it just hasn’t always worked out that way with my summer time work schedule fluctuating as it has been.

This weekend will be nice and busy too.

Meet with my person Thursday after work for a little doing the deal and a chicken dinner at Firewood Cafe.

Then Friday, doing the deal, a party, and…

Saturday, meeting another one of my people, it takes a village I tell ya, at Tart to Tart, then up and over to Noe Valley to record a podcast.

Coffee after with a friend.

7p.m. commitment.

Then.

Who knows.

Probably catch up on sleep.

No Saturday evening things happening.

That’s a little open.

Sunday, yoga, which I hope to squeak in on Saturday too, but might not.

Then two ladies back to back and after a coffee date and walk down to the beach.

It’s date 1.5.

We met last week Friday at Public Works for the Desert Heart dj collective party.

He was with friends, I was with friends, but we danced a bit and hit it off and he got a hold of me yesterday and said let’s hang out.

So coffee and beach walk date.

And the weeks.

They do pass by.

Time it does so fly.

It’s amazing how quick.

It’s amazing how full my life is.

I am blessed to have so much happening.

A full and grateful heart, a full and gratitude filled life.

It’s awful nice.

I’ll have one more week of “normal” work hours next week, then start shifting into the August scheduling.

Which reminds me.

I also need to figure out how to get to the retreat and back for school.

That shouldn’t be too hard though.

Although, that being said I still need to work out a few details since I’ll be going to work from the retreat.

I may actually end up coming back to San Francisco, renting a car, and then driving back to Glenn Ellen the last day of my retreat, depending on when it lets out.

Ack.

Lots of stuff to juggle.

But.

Also lots of fun.

Despite the school year quickly approaching I am looking forward to seeing friends from my cohort and getting re-acquainted.

And it will be a much different retreat this year as I know the folks in my cohort and I know the space and the facility.

There will be an easing in that should be much softer and gentler than the landing I made last year.

Especially, as I recall that getting a ride there was crazy pants.

The person I was supposed to get a ride from canceled last minute, like minutes before I was supposed to go.

Fortunately I was working with a lady when I got the text and she just said, “hey, I can take you,” and that was that.

See.

Things will work out like that for me and the event will as well.

For me and everything in my life.

As long as I keep in fit spiritual condition.

I will be taken care of.

I always am.

Seriously.

Oh, Sweet Friday

April 30, 2016

How do I love thee?

Let me count the ways.

One sparkling, clean, fresh, tidy home.

I got up early today and I did the deal, wrote, breakfasted, coffee’d, wrote some more, and ran up to the market to pick up a few things for the weekend–my little co-op will be closed for International Workers Day on this Sunday, May 1st.

Which marks three years back from Paris for me.

I remember leaving so well, like it was yesterday and I am marveling at the amazing amount of life that I have lived since I have returned from my adventure in trying to be French for a little tiny time in my life.

It was so very, very, very hard.

But it was so worth it.

Every tear I cried, sluiced away in the memories of buttery smells from the patisserie by Square D’Anvers–which I am quietly and joyfully reminded of every time I ride my scooter to work past Tartine on Guerrero Street.  Tartine is the only place I have ever smelled that same delicious baking smell from outside of Paris.  It has something to do with the butter they use for making the croissants and something to with the bread making.

I am no expert, but my nose, well, it knows.

Three years since I moved back from Paris.

And here I am at the nadir of my last month of my first year of graduate school.

Here I am heading into a well deserved weekend from a great job with children I love and a family I respect and am privileged to work for.

A family that confirmed they want me full time for the summer.

Whew.

Although there will be changes in my schedule which I am not horribly thrilled about, I’ll start much earlier with the family than I do now, for instance.

I will be back to working 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

40 hours a week.

I’ve been averaging 35 hours a week when I’m not in school and 28 when I am.

Plus, I have worked a few extra hours here and there and been hyper flexible with them in regards to coming to the house and doing extra stuff for them when they have travelled.

We will review at the end of summer in regards to fall employment.

I am not afraid of that, although I felt a momentary twinge of fear, it went away fast.

Forget you fear, even should the family decide to not run with me as their nanny and I really can’t see that, although, who knows, come this fall, I will find other employment or it will find me.

l have ten years of nanny experience and I’m getting a Masters in Integral Counseling Psychology to be a Child Psycho Therapist.

Who the hell wouldn’t want to hire me.

Yeah, humility, not always my strong suit, but I certainly don’t need to be anxious about employment, I have always, always, always been taken care of.

As long as I put my recovery first, everything, absolutely everything has followed.

It has not always followed the way I thought it would, but everything has been better than what I could have planned or hoped for.

I mean.

If I had had my way, I’d still be in Paris.

But God had his way.

And.

I’ve been back in San Francisco, making it through the crazy tech times and the boisterous economy and the sky rocketing rents.

Side bar.

My land lord sent me a text asking for my e-mail address and my first thought, was “fuck, here it is, she’s really raising the rent,” and then I remembered what my person said to me–“be positive Carmen, don’t always go to the worst case scenario,” and decided that wasn’t the case at all and sent her my e-mail.

She replied by sending me an invitation to her birthday party.

Ha.

Oh.

I fucking love my crazy head.

So.

Yeah, I’ve been doing a lot of that practicing being positive.

“You seem to be coming through this whole Burning Man thing, the not going, really, really well, I am so impressed,” my person told me last night.

I reflected.

Yeah, it was hard and I was sad, but it passed quickly and I know, really deeply, that there is something else I am supposed to be doing, some other experience.

I don’t have to know what it is.

I just know that I need to have the experience rather than Burning Man, otherwise I would be going to Burning Man.

There are no mistakes in God’s world.

I’ll go next year.

And what with confirming my full time employment with the family I was also asked to go with them again to Stone Tree, the place they rent out for weeks in the summer for a part of their summer vacation travel plans.

I will once again be up in Sonoma, outside of Glenn Ellen for a few weeks come this summer.

They go twice, once in the early summer and then again right before school starts back up for the boys in August.

I also found out that they will be traveling to Oregon, but I won’t be going with them, I’ll stay back, do some house work and then.

Hmm.

Maybe Wisconsin?

I have really felt a pull to see my best friend from back home and what with my other friend being in Minnesota not too far from the Twin Cities, I may kill two birds with one stone and see a couple of dear friends.  I have to double check dates and times.  I won’t get paid proper vacation time for it, but I’ll get a short week, 28 hours, for their time away and I will still get my full week of vacation time for my second year school retreat, also in August.

It looks like summer is going to be big regardless of what I do.

It’s not here yet though.

My sparkling clean house attests to that.

First the weekend.

Yoga in the morning, shower, breakfast, coffee, writing, meet my person.

Then.

Yes.

My date.

Eek a mouse.

Finally here.

Yay!

It’s the weekend.

I am officially arrived.

Thank fucking God.

Seriously.

Out Of The Frying Pan

August 17, 2015

Into the fire.

Or intermediately into the fire?

I mean, I suppose the fire will be when I go to Burning Man, but wow.

It’s hot out there folks.

Today, my last day at the Noetic Institute up in Petaluma it hit 99 degrees.

Tomorrow, here in Glenn Ellen it will be 97 degrees.

That is warm.

At least for this San Franciscan lady.

I suppose it’s just preparation for the high temperatures I’m going to hit up in Black Rock City, so hey, might as well get used to it.

It, the heat, actually did not feel too bad for me.

And it wasn’t outside that I felt the most heat.

It was in the class room.

In the T-Group model that I spent a lot of time in today, all of today, and all of yesterday ( Friday and part of Thursday was well), and, dude, intense does not do it justice.

The good news is that I lived through it to tell the tale and I did not run, I did not hide.

Although, if I am honest, which I was not able to really sit down and do last night since I was still so thick in the heat of it, I did flee.

I, however, waited for the class to be done before I fled and I did not make a scene.

What I did not realize until I was almost in full-blown panic attack, was that I was having a panic attack.

I got myself to my dorm room and I swear I might have hyperventilated if I had stayed in my room.

I dashed out the dorm and tumbled down the steps.

I found a friend.

A dear.

Sweet.

Wonderful.

Amazing new friend.

And she walked with me to the dark of the hillside and let me spill it all out and have myself a good cry, and should you be wondering did I tell her about T-Group, no, I did not.

What happens in T-Group stays the fuck in T-Group.

I did however tell her about the flight or fight that came up for me, the deep shaming I experienced and the rush of anger that had preceded it.

I have not been that angry in so long I was not able to name the emotion for a moment.

I think it’s been a couple of years since I have experienced the level of anger that consumed me.

My skin got so hot I literally had and sustained a red flush on my chest and face for about 45 minutes, perhaps an hour.

I had so much adrenalin and so much blood coursing through my hands and chest and face, it was the most intense feeling and yes, that’s right, I got to have it again today.

But.

Not as bad.

And no panic attack this time.

The T-Group model, I believe, is meant to elicit an emotional response but what I saw was historical for me and I was triggered, and I hate, hate, hate that word, but that is what happened and I haven’t been triggered so hard before.

Ever.

I feel, in hindsight that it was happening, this build up, for a while, and I wasn’t able to name it.

I can name so many emotions, I have a veritable language bouquet of emotive feeling words that I can use and use them I do.

But anger?

I had no idea that it would take that much to get me to feel it, no, that’s not correct, I was getting signals from my body, but I chose to ignore them because I didn’t think they were such a big deal.

The small irritations that happened.

Annoyance that built and built and built and at some point boiled over.

What I learned was that I have to speak my mind much faster than what I think I do.

I have to express and lay a boundary–that’s a big part of the nature of the groups–way before I feel like I do.

I kept brushing it aside, the annoyance, the gnat of a feeling, go away, you’re not worth it.

And every time I ignored that feeling, out of fear of confrontation, which is another point of the T-Group-not to avoid conflict but to learn how to navigate through it– because of that fear I wasn’t sure I’d be able to control or navigate, it got bigger.

Doing the opposite of what the model was trying to teach me to do.

Until the explosion last night.

Which wasn’t seen by anyone other than my dear friend.

I suspect that people in my group were aware that I was really uncomfortable with the emotion and that I was straining to contain it, but no one knew the extent and what do we not do outside of the T-Group?

Process.

It all has to be done in the container the model provides.

So.

It erupted and there I was exhausted, wrung, blown open and I hadn’t even gone in for the night, and I still had to pack my bags–we had to have all of our things out of the dormitories by 9 a.m. when classes started.

I had originally thought, oh, if check out is at 9 a.m. then the classes end on Saturday.

Boy.

Was I wrong.

Classes were held today.

Granted they were truncated, for which I am so grateful, but we still had them all day long and our breaks for meals were cut into to accommodate the new schedule.

After breakfast.

Right to T-Group.

And there it was the trepidation, the fear, the anxiety.

I kept walking through it, I kept showing up for my group and I am so grateful I did.

But yes, in the afternoon the issue did come to a head and I was able to address it.

With a gallon of tears and the second hottest body temp of my experience–yesterday’s anger reaction prior to the panic attack being the hottest.

I got it out.

The conflict was resolved.

But.

I soaked through my shirt with sweat.

In an air-conditioned room.

I still can’t believe that happened.

And.

Yes.

I learned.

OH DID I LEARN.

Grateful for the learning lesson, grateful to be pushed so hard, grateful to also be held so securely and safely with my facilitator who help me to do the work without doing it for me.

I learned.

Teachability, what a gift.

I also got some fantastic feedback and a deep love and gratitude for the process.

Did I like it?

Hell fucking no.

Did I have the courage to walk through the fear and do the learning anyway?

Yes.

And just for that I know that I am going to be an amazing psycho-analyst.

I really am.

I still have so much to learn and do.

Oh Jesus, sweet baby Jesus, in the manager.

Do I have work to do.

Oh man, I have some papers to write and reading to do.

But.

I am well established.

I am on my way.

I am in it.

I through the fire.

It was hot.

I have been made the stronger for the forging.

And.

The steel was worthy of the flame.


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