Posts Tagged ‘goals’

We Were Talking

August 10, 2017

About you tonight.

Oh you were?

“Yeah, we were saying that you’re doing too much,” my friend said and gave me a hug.

Well.

Of course I’m doing too fucking much.

And I’m ok with it.

I am a busy woman.

But pockets of time present themselves to me and I get stuff done.

I managed to sneak in making a pot of soup in between a phone call, work, and covering my Wednesday night commitment.

I am good like that.

I also, wait for it, dropped off my paperwork to the school practicum office!

Killed two birds with one stone.

I had the mom ask me to take the oldest boy out on a solo adventure with me.

We went to the Exploratorium today down on the Embarcadero at Pier 15.

On the way, we swung into my school campus, rode, “the slowest elevator in the world,” according to my 7-year-old companion, and dropped off my evaluation to the woman who runs the practicum office.

We chatted a bit and it was nice to down load a little about my experiences and how it feels to be running with clients.

I have seven now.

My charge was as patient as a 7-year-old could be and after three minutes of chat I corralled him and we made our merry way to the FMarket trolley.

We also stopped in at the Peets Coffee across the street from my campus and I got a large nonfat latte and he got a steamed milk with whipped cream.

He was so cute.

It was adorable hanging out with him all afternoon.

When it’s just he and we have the best times.

We played all over the Exploratorium, the museum of science, art and human perception and had marvelous experiments and adventure and looked at all the things and played with all sorts of miraculous contraptions.

It really was great.

We ate lunch there and he ate most of my lunch because it was tastier and I happily shared and he cuddled with me hard and fell into a bit of a food coma and collapsed on my lap and hugged me and said, “scratch my back,” and I did and it was fabulous.

There’s nothing like a seven-year old boy snuggling on my lap to make me happy, he just loves me so much and it makes my heart super full.

He can be a total handful when he’s around his siblings, but one on one, oh my god, melt my heart.

He literally sat in my lap the entire way back.

We took the FMarket all the way into the Castro then hopped on the 24 bus and rode it to Church and 30th.

He’s a big fan of the Beatles and walking up the hill we sang Beatles songs and held hands.

Mostly “I Say Hello and You Say Goodbye,” over and over again.

I’m not much of a vocalist, I mean, I can sing, everyone can sing, but my little guy can really sing.

I was happy to hold my own and actually harmonize a bit with him.

And when I couldn’t hit the high notes, well, he did.

I feel pretty in love with the little guy and it was so nice to have the day with him.

We got back to the house a tiny bit before mom and his siblings and I got dinner going while he played Legos.

Dinner was pretty simple, I made his favorite dish, organic ground beef pan sautéed in good olive oil with garlic and onion, sea salt, rosemary, black pepper, and a bechamel sauce that I make right as the beef has browned up and then I put it over brown rice fusilli or whatever non-gluten pasta I wrangle up out of the pantry.

The boy loves it.

It’s amazing to watch him inhale it.

I love cooking.

It’s a nice perk to my job.

I know some nannies who would be horrified to have to cook, but I do really like it.

I love my family and I love making them dinner.

In fact, the mom told me that they, the kids, were excited to come back from their big trip and eat my food.

That was nice to hear.

The mom let me go a few minutes early and since I had dropped off the paperwork to my school I was able to slip home, do some practical stuff, eat a quick dinner, make a pot of soup and take a phone call before heading back out the door to my next gig.

I know I am busy and it was sweet to hear my friend and I looked at him and said, I get it, I do, I am busy and it’s a lot and yeah, I’m probably doing too much, but I don’t feel like I have much of a choice.

Although, that’s not necessarily true.

I could quit school and have oodles of free time.

But.

I would just be a nanny.

And I want more.

I am too smart and too driven to just stop here.

I want this.

I have been groomed for it, or so it feels.

And yeah.

This last year of school is probably going to be full tilt boogie.

But.

I know.

I know without any doubt.

That I will get through it.

I haven’t felt anxious at all about my schedule and the things I need to do.

It feels like it’s all falling right into place.

I can’t fuck it up.

I can’t manipulate it into happening.

If it’s supposed to happen it will.

I just get to show up today in the best way I know how and do whatever work is in front of me.

And yes.

When I can.

Well, yes, a girl will like to play.

And I shall.

No worries.

It’s all happening.

All the things.

All the.

Wonderful.

Amazing.

Awesome.

Things.

Oh, yes, they are.

Thank God.

 

Small Steps

July 28, 2017

Add up.

I keep telling myself that as I slowly start tracking my hours for my MFT license.

I also reiterated that to myself and an old friend that I had the pleasure of catching up with today over coffee and lunch in Hayes Valley.

We hadn’t seen each other in years and it was like old times.

And yes.

We’ve gotten older.

And older is all I’m going to get.

I don’t mind.

I like myself more and more.

I feel like I am entering my prime, not exiting it.

I have so very much to live for and I am so grateful that I have carved out this life here in San Francisco.

I don’t have to think about how long it will take to get my hours, I will get my hours, it will happen, the time will pass and one day it will be a story that I tell someone else who is beginning the process.

Things take time.

Sometimes things happen quickly, they fall into place, and there is a beauty and grace to it.

I am often reminded of what a very wise woman said to me years ago, “if it’s meant to be you can’t fuck it up and if it’s not meant to be, you can’t manipulate it into happening.”

My career path is like that.

For the longest time I tried this and that and the other to make it as a creative.

A writer.

A poet.

Maybe a screen writer, I certainly had and do have some interesting ideas for movies, but nothing panned out.

Oh.

Sure.

I have this, my blog, and it’s panned out fantastically, I throw my stuff at the screen in front of me, I process my day, I get things out, I figure it out mostly by not figuring it out, but by taking the creative action of just showing the fuck up here consistently.

But.

I have never really made it as a writer.

Not that I’m not a writer.

I’m fucking writing right now.

I’m good.

I’m not great.

But I would hazard that I am better than plenty of folks that do get published.

Perhaps it’s that I don’t understand how to submit, or that I don’t submit the right stuff or that I am not as good as I believe, it’s beyond me is what I’m saying.

One day it may not be.

Today it is and suffice to say.

I don’t give a flying fuck.

I love writing.

I love poetry.

I love expressing myself.

And this is my medium.

I don’t write for an audience.

Oh.

Sure.

Sometimes I may be addressing you, sometimes things sneak in and there’s a message between the lines, I won’t say that there’s not.

But I do really do the writing for myself.

But it’s not a career.

The dividends that have paid off are vast and varied, the people who I have met because of my blog, the things I have done, the experiences I have had, especially when my blog was a little more public, were and have been astounding.

Too many to list here.

However.

Most of the time the pay off has not been cash money.

In some round about ways, though, it has paid off more than handsomely.

I expressed to my friend today that I am often a bit ridiculed, or teased, ridiculed seems a harsher word than the poking fun I get from my cohort, for how fast I can write papers for class.

It really hasn’t been too much to sit down and knock out a big paper in one sitting, in a few hours.

If I have an idea of what I am writing, if I have done my research, taken good notes and done my reading for the class, I can crank it out.

I can do that because I do this, consistently, my rate of typing is fast.

I haven’t timed it in a long time, but it does seem that my thoughts fly from my brain and to my fingers quite quickly.

I will publish, I know that.

I will publish poems.

I will publish essays.

I will publish my memoir, although it needs severe re-writing.

It may not be the book I originally wrote.

But it will have the skeleton of the manuscript, I am sure of that.

My writing goals have not been met, but they will be, I am sure of that.

When isn’t important.

And I will publish psychology papers.

In some odd sort of twist that may be where I find my first publications, I don’t know exactly, but I do think that I will find that as an avenue for my work.

I have had great reviews of my school papers and I think with some tweaking I could probably submit some of those papers to psychology publications.

Who knows.

I just know that it will happen.

And I’m fine with the process being what it is.

I don’t have to manipulate it into happening and I can’t fuck it up.

Unless I stop.

Which right now seems impossible.

I have stories and stories and stories.

All the words.

There are so many.

So beautiful, like birds on a wire, like the scattershot of sunshine sparkling from the froth of waves, like the way love endears itself further into my heart when I am least expecting it.

My friend and I parted ways and I reflected as I got on my scooter and headed over to my job, my day job, that I have it pretty motherfucking good.

I do.

I have discovered many things about myself in the dozen or so years my friend and I have known each other and they all seem to have played beautiful and rich into the hand that I have been dealt.

I am on the path and in the place I am meant to be.

“You look amazing,” he said.

And you know what?

I feel amazing.

I think that shows.

Happy.

Joyous.

Motherfucking.

Free.

 

Not The Day Off

April 12, 2017

I had planned.

Actually.

I hadn’t anything fixed in my plans.

I had some ideas.

And nary a one of them was met.

Fine.

I am alright with that.

It was still a nice day off.

I had therapy in the morning.

I realized when I got there that I had left my phone charging on the table in my tiny kitchen.

I had even noticed it, and said to myself, self, don’t forget that phone, self, your phone is on table.

But.

Well.

Ack.

It was forgotten.

I took it to mean I should be electronically free for a little while.

It was interesting though.

Trying to get into the building where I go for therapy, it has a key code and I couldn’t remember it at first.

I had all the right numbers, as it turns out, I had just not tried them in the correct sequence.

I eventually got in, but it was sort of funny punching in the numbers and wondering how this was going to look to my new therapist.

We did chat a little about me forgetting my phone, happens sometimes when I get moving too fast or I am trying to do too many things, I was folding laundry because I didn’t want to come home to a basket of it and I was a little rushed.

I even remember thinking, really, are you going to be late to therapy because you’re folding leggings and socks?

Get going!

And of course.

I got.

And I forgot.

It was not the end of the world, but I can tell as the weeks just begin to build, that I am scared of what may come up, of the stuff getting unpacked, the things crawling out into the light of day, the raggedy dolly being pulled out from underneath the bed, that the therapeutic alliance is being created and if I trust this woman.

WELL.

Shit might happen.

I was joking with a friend about emotions and naming them and he said, “yeah I know, when this thing happened (insert thing, I don’t remember) I felt like shit.”

I said to him, “shit is not a feeling.”

“Yeah, you’re right,” he said, “I felt like crap.”

We both laughed.

Thing is.

As much as I might be afraid to address the stuff, I do want to shine some light on it, find the wounding, clean it out, heal it and let myself experience more living, more experiences, more joy, more laughter.

I feel like there’s a lot of things that I don’t appreciate enough because I still have these super old defensive mechanisms that kick into place sometimes and I am not always aware of them.

I want to shed them.

I want new tools for my life and experiences.

I want to grow.

I don’t want to stay stuck.

It’s a challenge.

And I’m aware that I may throw a monkey wrench into the process, but I can also see quite well that I am the only thing in my way of moving forward.

So.

I had my session and I scootered back home.

I got my phone, 100% charged, ha.

I texted my friend who I was meeting for lunch and confirmed timing and headed right back out.

We hung out, shot the shit, talked about my trip to Paris.

God.

I could talk about my trip to Paris a lot.

In case you were wondering.

I leave a month from today on May 11th.

One month away.

Four weeks of work.

Three papers.

One weekend of classes.

So close.

I can taste the baguette.

Not that I will be eating any.

Perhaps I should say, smell the baguette.

There is just such a delicious smell to bread in France, the butter they use for the croissants, oof, the smell is heady and rich and so much more nuanced than what I smell from a croissant here.

A few places do get it right.

Tartine has a croissant worth writing about.

Again, not that I have tried any recently, but it is still something magical to ride past the store front on 18th and Guerrero and smell the bread and the pastry being made.

I always reminds me of the smell in Paris on the blocks where there is a good boulangerie.

Grateful again and again that I booked this trip.

I will be missing my darling and pregnant friend with whom I was supposed to be taking  the trip with, however, I know myself, I know my abilities, and I know that I will have a grand time.

I am not afraid to travel on my own, although company is nice, it is not necessary.

I shall create the company I crave.

And that really is all that matters.

Being aware of what my needs are, being able to access them, and take care of them.

Like today.

I just needed to chill out on my friends couch and talk.

Sometimes that is the best thing I can do.

Not do a whole hell of a lot.

Have a nice lunch, hang out, talk, connect with another human being, share adventures in life and make more plans to have more adventures.

I promised myself I was not going to have anything to do with school today or yesterday and that was accomplished.

Perhaps the most important thing was that.

We did leave my friend’s house and have adventures out in the world, running some errands in the SOMA, having coffee at Wicked Grounds, which always amuses, there are few choices for coffee in the SOMA and who doesn’t want to go to a sex positive coffee-house in the leather district in San Francisco?

Hello.

Their coffee is not the best, but when you don’t have a choice, it will work, and the crowd is always eclectic, and the scenery is fun to check out and it’s cheeky and cute.

We ended up giving up our table to a group that were coming in to run a rope bondage workshop.

I love San Francisco.

Then I headed back to the Castro, caught a quick bite and did the deal with my person.

It was a perfect.

Lovely.

Low key day off.

Hell.

I even snuck in a little self-care session when I got home.

Heh.

I am ready to go back to work tomorrow and I even have time to unwind with a video and some more hot tea before calling it a night.

Tomorrow the work and school grind is back on.

And that’s ok.

Because at the end of the tunnel.

Light.

The golden flares of brilliance off the edges of the Seine at sunset, the river smote with light, swans, and the Eiffel Tower in the distance, a dream, just there, smitten with the smell of baking bread, adrift in the dust motes of love scattered there on the waves.

Yes.

I see you Paris.

Please do wait for me.

I will be there soon.

Je t’aime Paris.

Trop bisoux pour toi.

Surprisingly Together

April 8, 2017

And well grounded.

I don’t even feel all that tired.

Which is sort of shocking, considering that I just got back from doing an 11 hour school day.

I was prepared though and able to carry through with all the things that needed to be attended to and I did some good self-care, got up early, took a nice hot shower before breakfast, made a nice unsweetened vanilla coconut/almond milk latte, I rode the MUNI into class, rain, and connected with all my sweet friends.

I also feel that there was a distinct shift for me in being able to focus on the classes and material as I have all my practicum stuff nailed down, I don’t have any anxiety about trying to make it all happen.

It all happened.

I’m registered and all my paperwork is signed.

It’s like walking the plank with my eyes wide open.

I have started the journey and I have no clue exactly what I am about to leap into, but I am on the way to leaping.

I have a few weeks of “freedom” haahahaha, that’s funny, (final projects, papers, and one more weekend of class) before I have to start supervision, and about a month and a half before I start at my internship.

I will have Paris before that.

Although, it does now look like I won’t be in the Marais, my friend’s house had some unexpected water damage and there will be construction happening.

I will be staying with a friend of hers in the 10th.

This is going to be a new one, but not that new, I’ve done Air BnB before when traveling, I’ll be staying with someone new, but he’s in a great location and he’s a dear friend of my friend and frankly anyone who is her close friend is going to be a good friend of mine.

I have nothing to complain about, I get to stay somewhere free in Paris.

That is a huge gift.

She is a huge gift in my life.

I am so grateful for her and for my other friends that I reconnected with today.

There were lots and lots and lots of hugs.

Some tears too.

Life happens and it’s hard and we all showed up for each other in some pretty spectacular ways today, I felt honored and privileged to be a part of the cohort and happy to be seen by my friends.

I also got some extraordinary remarks, comments and feedback on a paper I wrote from my professor who I hold in most highest esteem, her opinion of me and my abilities means a lot to me.

I know I’ve got her up on a pedestal, but she really is an amazing teacher and I needed an amazing teacher to be able to do the work that is required for doing trauma work.

“I suppose you learn a lot about yourself,” my driver said to me tonight as we chit chatted about my program.

Folks often have this idea that I’m headed out to some party or some fun Friday night thing but no, I’m just going home after doing 11 hours of school, which leads to a conversation about what I am studying.

My driver asked me so many questions and it was really fun to share some of the things that I am learning and practicing and I could also tell he was trying to get, “Just asking for a friend,” information about whether I thought Couples Therapy had any efficacy.

I basically gave him a session on the ride home.

It was like Taxi Cab Confessionals except from the passengers purview.

It also let me realize, in the telling, that I know a lot more than I even realize and that I can disseminate the material well enough to a lay person to make concepts clear and ideas and it was sort of cool to just let myself talk and hear the theories fall out of my mouth.

I really had a moment of being, “who is this person talking?”

And it was me.

I am sure I will have my doubts and troubles, my anxieties and fears, but I feel that I have come a really big way and I feel like I can see myself being able to take on clients.

I can do this.

I really can.

And.

I am going to be good at it.

God damn it’s nice to find my niche, to know where I am most needed to fit myself to be of maximum service, to know I can be of help and do well by myself as well.

There is life long learning as well.

I appreciate that.

I will keep growing.

I will keep getting to find out and experience different things.

There will always be books to read, articles to write, experiences to be had, I have such a full rich life, this work only adds a deeper complexion and color to a glass that is full to overflowing with love and experience.

Grateful.

That is where I stand.

In a place of deep gratitude.

And I always could see more softening in me, more resilience, and more acceptance of myself, where I am in the program and where I can ease up a little, in the classroom and in my interactions with other students in the cohort.

We are a pretty incredible bunch and I’m super lucky to get to learn from them as well as my teachers.

All the learning.

It’s amazing.

I am so grateful that I am allowing it to keep happening, to keep engaging, to keep growing, to keep pushing at the edges of boundaries and seeing what else and where else I can grow.

Yes.

Growth is painful.

But as they say, “pain is the touchstone of spiritual growth.”

I have had some growth spurts this year, and it’s only April.

Leaning into.

Learning to love myself more.

Doing the deal.

And showing up.

That’s pretty much it for today’s check-in.

Off to get some more sleep than I did last night.

So.

I can get up.

And.

Do it all over again.

Write Your Own

February 1, 2017

Happy ending.

He told me yesterday after giving me a stupendous hug.

“You’re a writer, write your own story,” he added, then, “you’re going to help so many people, Carmen, you really are.”

I felt bowled over with his love and confidence in me.

It is so very nice to have friends.

It is amazing to have the fellowship and community I have.

“You’re going to be in Oakland Saturday night?” She asked on the phone today when I had a moment at the park while my charge was playing in the sand box. “Of course I’ll go, I’ll pick you up from the BART station, we can grab some food and catch up.”

Yes.

Oh yes please.

Community.

Love.

Friends.

All the things that I need to get me through the day and through the week.

And it’s been a good week.

I had a great day at work today.

I felt super helpful.

I got to run errands, pick up one of my charges from school while the mom was at the one month old check up for the baby at the doctors, my little ladybug charge went with mom and I got to pick up big brother at the school.

We had a wonderful chat, ended up running into a classmate on the way to the train, detoured and climbed the hill to Dolores Park.

My office with a spectacular view.

The boys ran around the park for an hour, then I got a text from the mom, and headed back to the house, stopping at the little organic market on the way back to the house.

I was greeted with much affection and hugs, I got loads of hugs today from my charges.

Such sweetness.

And.

Oh.

It happened.

It finally happened.

“Oh!  Can you take the burping machine,” the mom asked, handing me off the baby, to go help the little lady bug in the bathroom with a sudden need for mom.

It happened so fast and unexpectedly and it was just divine.

She passed me the sweet, warm, soft bundle of baby.

Oh.

Oh my.

The smell.

Oh, God.

My first thought, “I want one.”

So bad, God, I want a baby.

Tears welled up in my eyes and I breathed his scent in deeply.

All babies have that scent that milky, sweet, skin soft, bread baked with love and dusted with buttered pixie dust.

I can’t quite describe it, powdery, warm, human, I was lustful with the longing to have one of my own immediately, now, now, now and the tears, oh they held, hung up in the bottom lashes of my eyes, trembling just there, but never quite cresting to slide down the round tops of my cheeks.

I turned to the window, the huge, gigantic wall of glass with the entire skyline of the city spread out below, the sun spinning it’s last light a golden crust of fire illuminating the glass buildings and spraying red gold brilliance into the heavens, and shifted the baby up on my shoulder a little bit.

He sighed, gurgled, and settled.

I patted his back softly, I crooned my little song.

I have a lullaby that I always sing to my charges, it’s a version of Hush Little Baby Don’t Say A Word, that I have adapted for me, the nanny, not the mom, not the dad, to sing.

Hush little baby, don’t say a word/I’m going to buy you a mockingbird

And if that mockingbird won’t sing/I’m going to buy you a diamond ring.

And if that diamond ring turns brass/I’m going to buy you a looking class.

And if that looking glass should break/I’m going to bake you a chocolate cake.

So hush little baby, don’t say a world/I’m going to buy you a mockingbird.

Then.

I croon a hum.

Not a song, no words, just a soft repetetive hum, up and down, soft and low.

And I sway, foot to foot, a rocking motion that seems innate inside my body, so natural and comfortable I don’t even realize I’m doing it.

I remember once sitting next to someone while I was rocking a charge to sleep in my arms and sitting there, in a folding chair, listening to what I needed to hear and attending to the little boy child in my arms, an eighteen month old who was teething pretty hard, and just swaying in that chair, that warm lump of child draped across my breast, and the man sitting next to me whispered, “I think that little boy might be the luckiest male alive.”

“I wish someone would rock me in their arms until I fell asleep while singing me lullabies.”

It wasn’t until much later that I realized he was hitting on me, I was rather stupid at that point of my recovery.

Sometimes I have blinders on.

Anyway.

I stood there, swaying back and forth and crooning my little wordless tune and he sighed, and melted asleep.

Tears again, but not so heavy, just a misting on my face and the mom and daughter came out of the bathroom and mom said, “oh, he fell asleep!  Would you mind holding him while I finish up dinner?”

Would I mind?

“I obviously hate this,” I said and smiled, my heart so happy to be holding this little mite of a human being, this precious cargo entrusted to me, such simple delight.

Such a gift.

I held him for an hour, he slept high on my breast, held in the crook on my right arm, warm head nestled into the curve of my neck, tucked just there under my chin, soft and warm and perfumed with all things love.

And.

It got better.

I mean.

How it happened I could not have orchestrated.

I could not have directed, it just happened.

The family ate dinner, dad was late coming back from work, and they sat down.

They chatted and laughed and we shared the view.

The mom and the little girl ran off to a bedroom to hunt up a library book and the oldest brother approached me, “can you read me this story?”

We pulled out a big chair, I sat down gentle, with his baby brother still sleeping on my shoulder, then he crawled into my lap, I put my arm around him and he settled into my lap, curled up in a boy ball, his feet in stripe socks nestled on my knees.

I read him the story.

His brother slept on my right shoulder, he cuddled into my left.

Then his sister came by and leaned into the chair.

I reached up, stroked her corn silk hair and smiled.

I was completely surrounded with love and trust and sweetness and vulnerability.

It was amazing.

Then someone poked someone and someone else pulled someone else’s hair and I had to settle them down and point to the baby, but we settled back in and I read the story until it was time to go.

Magic.

It was extraordinary.

And I carried that magic with me, a bubble of gossamer love and light, the cusp of the new moon sailing off toward Venus, the midnight blue threads of clouds scudded  with white bottoms and grey satin shimmers.

I felt a sail, a sloop, a crooning slip of love sending me home on the rails of city lights.

Write your own happy ending.

Write your own fairy tale.

Tie it up with a black grosgrain ribbon and hang it from the star shining above the new moon.

Kiss it into being and tuck it under your pillow to dream upon.

Give it pumpkin colored tulips in a tall Mason jar.

Spin it colored pastel and light like a globe of hope and desire.

Overcome the old sad story you’ve told yourself all your life.

And write your own damn happy ending.

I mean it.

Just do it.

Right.

Fucking.

NOW.

 

 

 

Unexpected Thank You

January 25, 2017

I got the sweetest text message from my employer when I got home from work.

She thanked me for putting up with the crazy kiddos and for making a delicious dinner.

Aw!

My pleasure.

And really, the kids are not crazy, kids never really are, but when they are sick they can be a little off and my little lady today was definitely off.

I was greeted by her sweet face at the door when I came in, she was home sick from school and we spent many hours hanging out on the couch, we cuddled, read stories, played cops and robbers at one point when she had some energy, horses and unicorns, dog picnic, and loads of stickers and coloring.

It was definitely a far fuller day then I have yet experienced and I think I got a little taste for what it will be like when the dad returns to work full-time.

He is in transition and has started back one day a week.

That day was today and I had a little a ha moment and a lot of gratitude for all the time I got to have yesterday to read.

I had brought my books and reader with me from my Couples Therapy class.

I had some high hopes.

They were pretty much left at the curb when I was greeted by my little friend at the door.

I was fine with it though and I really did have a lovely day and there is something nice about being needed and I felt helpful and useful and really appreciated by the family.

I really like them.

Such a nice thing.

The mom and I had a really sweet conversation today talking about my health insurance of all things.

She wanted to know how I was going to be affected by the recent political change and whether it would have an effect on my insurance.

I don’t know.

I suspect that I won’t know for a little while and I’m not going to worry about it.

I am going to focus on what I can do for the person in front of me, in the moment, in the here and in the now, to the best of my abilities.

But.

I did share that when I heard the news my first thought (I edited my version to my boss) was, “well fuck it, then I’m going to cheat on my taxes.”

I’m not, of course.

But that was my first thought.

I was and have been very taken with how much the parents, the mom especially, have treated me, engaged with me, worked with me, I feel like I am slowly, really going to be a part of the family.

I feel very embraced by them and very respected and that is just such a nice thing.

And it makes me want to do my job even better.

I find that when I am treated humanely and with kindness I will bend the fuck over to help out and do a good job.

I’m a little concerned about this, but not too much, I don’t think I’m going to lose myself in the job and I also have been encouraged to stop, rest, take breaks, drink tea.

I’m down with all of that.

Plus, they have been flexible with my school stuff.

Which feels like a super big thing.

Especially since I head to my first open house tomorrow night.

I have to leave work about 45 minutes early.

I’m gong to have to ask them to allow me some lenience in regards to doing that, leave work early, for the next couple  weeks on Wednesday.

Plus whenever I get called back to interview.

I am just going to have to suck it up and talk with the mom tomorrow.

Today was too busy, dad at work, mom out taking care of stuff, one sick kid at the house and dinner to cook was enough work for me.

Plus.

The baby.

Granted.

I haven’t done much with the baby yet.

Mom has got him and dad too.

It’s beautiful watching him grow.

He’s 3.5 weeks old.

Anyway.

I do have to have the conversation and if I can’t get out all the days that I need to, well, so be it.

I keep telling myself I won’t slip through the cracks, I am enough, I’ll get practicum placement and it will all be just fine.

REALLY.

It will.

I have not been taken this far to suddenly get dropped on my ass.

I am grateful that I did not understand how much work there was that had to be done.

I mean I might not have applied  to the program!

I did though and I’m doing well and I like what I am doing and I love that I will get to help others out as well as continue to grow and nurture myself.

It will be years before I make real money.

But I will be making triple, quadruple, maybe more, quite likely more, when I think about it with some honesty.

I don’t know what that’s going to look like.

But I have plans.

A year’s prudent reserve in savings.

Paying off my student loans.

But if you want to do that, feel free, just let me know and I’ll send you the information.

Heh.

Having a car.

Yes.

I am a scooter queen and a bicycle loving girl.

But man, sometimes I just want a car.

More travel, obviously.

And.

A house.

One in San Francisco.

I know.

I am crazy.

But.

I bet it will happen.

Sooner than I think too.

How?

Who knows, magic maybe, honestly I don’t need to know.

I will be fine if I don’t own a house, but it’s always been a dream of mine.

Ooh.

A retirement fund.

I know.

Sexy.

Right?

Old lady traveler on the move, you know it!

The journey is the point though and I don’t want to not be here in the present enjoying my small, sweet, cozy home, the music playing, the lamps glowing, candles flickering, the pictures and paintings and photographs on the walls.

I have a damn good life.

I do.

Grateful for all the things.

All the things.

And.

The.

Love.

Obviously.

That.

Always.

 

Are You Done Yet?

August 26, 2015

Yes and no.

It was with some relief that I sent off my last two papers.

Thus the culmination of having arrived at the point where I could say, yes!  Bring on the Burning Man.

Except.

Well.

There’s more to do.

Argh.

I realized that I will have to stay up to par with my reading, all the reading that needs to be done for the first weekend of school–really, my first week at school on campus–which is the weekend after I get back from Burning Man.

It already feels like I have been doing school work for a month.

Which I have.

The reading, the papers that were due before the retreat, the retreat, the catching up on reading, the getting here, to Glen Ellen for work, working, back to SF, then back to Glen Ellen, more working, then more reading, the writing of all the papers.

In toto: 5 papers.

A ten page paper.

A seven page paper.

An eight page paper.

A short one page creative brief.

And another two page reflection paper.

The last two papers I did this evening and it was in the process of looking over the syllabus that I discovered, god damn it Professor Kich! That I had another paper due that was a reflection paper (similar to the one he had my class do previous to arriving at the retreat) in regards to the reading that needs to be done for the class that opening weekend on campus.

And if he’s got reading, you can be sure that there is other reading that I have to do.

I felt instantly deflated.

As though none of the work I had done was worth it, that I was constantly going to be doing work, the work, it never stops.

Then, I reflected, of course I’m going to feel this way, I’m in graduate school and the work is not going to stop.

At least not for the next three years.

That’s the deal.

That’s the reality.

So.

Don’t bemoan what there is left to do.

Just get to it.

I did what I could.

I felt a little blown out from the big paper writing last night and it took me a moment to get into the papers tonight.

But I did.

And I had done some reading, just a half hour, while on my break while the family went for a hike in the Jack London National Woods, this afternoon as well as another hour and some change this evening after finishing the two small papers.

I had seen the Kich assignment when I was reviewing my reading this afternoon, but it didn’t really sink in until I sat down later in the evening to do the last of the papers.

Despite feeling like I was getting off the work in a reasonable time, way ahead of schedule I felt almost immediate panic at the thought of having to stay on top of the reading for the upcoming session.

The thing is, I remind myself, I have done a hell of a lot of work since the end of the retreat and I have caught up on the reading and surpassed what I need to read for one of my classes.

Granted, one of my classes the god damn reader is not available for it.

Damn it Dubitzky!

Get it together.

I’m sure it’s not the professor’s fault, the reader can’t be printed yet because there are some sort of copy write issues happening with it, royalties haven’t been paid or something of the like.

I haven’t even looked at the syllabus for the class.

I know there are other readings for it and I will explore those when I can.

I can also take care of doing some reading tomorrow as well as when I get back.

I’m not taking my books with me.

Although it is a definite consideration.

But I have been to Burning Man enough times to know that I won’t read there.

Not the way I am going this year.

I am not going to be stuck, isolated from the rest of the event, with the exception of going to the commissary three times a day.

I knew there was something wrong with my last couple of burns when the highlight of my day was going to the commissary so that I could interact with people.

I will not be that isolated this year and I am allowing myself the freedom to play and play as much as I can.

Which does not mean in the conventional sense of the word, I’m not going to be imbibing in extracurricular substances or drinking or partying in the common parlance of the saying, “work hard, play hard.”

NOPE.

Rather, my play hard will be dressing up, drinking loads of coffee, wearing fun makeup, sticking too many flowers in my hot pink hair, dancing without a care in the world like no one is watching, even if they are, bicycling across the playa, hanging out with friends at camp, going to do the deal in my favorite village, visiting Camp Stella and Run Free, having reunions, making new friends, making out, there has to be making out, I deserve (and need, frankly, need it at this point) to be kissed, and kissed well, more dancing, late night walks under the stars in deep playa, looking at art, playing with art, singing, giving hand massages, connecting with people, those I love and those I haven’t yet met but know I will love, connecting with my favorite little person who is not so little anymore, rides on art cars, snuggling in furry blankets, seeing fire art, FIRE! FIRE! FIRE!

Oh there will be playing.

And there will not be blogging.

Yup.

You heard it here first.

I have decided, officially, to not take my laptop.

I cannot afford to damage it and I want to have an unplugged experience.

My phone will go with me and I will use it for photos and I will also have my Fuji camera on hand, there will be much photography.

But I won’t be blogging or logging on to the internet out there.

I won’t be reading or writing papers.

I will be having fun.

I will allow myself this.

I will not take on extra.

I will be of service to my community.

But I will not sacrifice myself and my experience any longer.

It’s time for me to go to Burning Man.

Really go.

So whatever reading doesn’t get done.

So be it.

I’m doing good.

I’m ahead of the curve, I’m not going to sabotage myself or my experience.

I am going to have fun.

If it fucking kills me.

I jest.

A little.

Congratulations!

March 7, 2015

Greetings, and congratulations on your acceptance to California Institute of Integral Studies!

Dear Carmen,

Congratulations! I am delighted to inform you of your acceptance to the California Institute of Integral Studies.  You have met all of your admissions requirements and have been fully accepted to the  Master of Arts Weekend program in Counseling Psychology with a concentration in Integral Counseling Psychology for the 2015-16 Fall Semester.   You will soon receive an acceptance letter in the mail.

 

HOLY SHIT.

I’m going to graduate school.

Oh my.

HOLY SHIT.

I’m going into debt.

Who cares!

I’m going to graduate school, graduate school, graduate school.

Gonna get me a Masters of Fine Arts.

And learn how to spell.

Or at least sit quietly and listen to what other people need, that’s the point of being a therapist, and being of service, that’s a nice thing too.

I ran upstairs to tell the mom at work.

I had put down the monkey for his afternoon nap and coordinated with the mom at lunch about what marketing needed to be done, what I was going to make for dinner, and retrieval of said grocery items that needed to be bought.

I picked up my phone from the counter where it had been re-charging, I re-charge my phone frequently, I take a lot of photos of the boys at work and that will zap the juice from my phone faster than you’d expect.

I have been in the habit of checking my e-mail of late and I did just that before heading out the door.

I caught my breath.

There.

There it was.

I could barely read it.

I just saw the congratulations part and my whole body filled up with light and love and gratitude and I could feel the breath tangle up in my chest and tears stung my eyes.

I got in.

“I never once thought you wouldn’t,” my dear friend told me later on the phone, “I never doubted.”

I didn’t really either, but I also didn’t want to be too cocky about it.

I felt like it was happening almost without me giving it much thought, I just kept taking these little tiny steps, little bursts of faith-based actions, and there it was the culmination of those efforts, ever since the confrontation with my employer out at Burning Man.

I am reminded of that day, the morning after I got yelled at by my boss, and how it changed me, how I allowed the change to happen within me.

There was an art piece out on the playa that my darling friend and I walked to the afternoon after the ridiculous rain storm hit and the gates were shut down and I had spent five hours hiding out in the Commissary.

It was “The Wheel of Fortune.”

A circle of doors that led where?

As it turned out one opened the door of a Major Arcana Tarot card.

I walked in through Death.

How apropos.

I had come to the realization that I was no longer going to be a nanny, or at least, that I had to do something different, and that graduate school was in order and that I had to change, my employer didn’t have to do a damn thing.

I had to change.

The death of self, the death of the idea that I knew better, the death of my old hopes/dreams (being a highly sought after published writer with all sorts of fame and monies), the surrender to the Universe that I really did not know what was best for me.

But that I hoped.

True.

To live a life of purpose and meaning and service.

My friend and I walked around the circle and looked over the cards on the back of the doors–the art work was superlative, dandy steam punk inspired, gothic, rich in rendering, there was a circular velvet covered bench to sit on in the middle, the open blue sky above.

I, in my mind, had decided I was going to exit through the Lovers door.

I mean, that’s what Burning Man is about, another of my unrealistic hopes, to find a lover and partner at Burning Man, get me some LOVE on.

Love

Love

But after talking and sharing with my friend about the epiphany I had when I did some inventory on my job and shared it with a fellow the previous night and the perspective he gave me, I completely forgot about exiting through the Lovers Door.

“Let’s go see some more art,” she said.

We got up off the bench, still chatting, and without realizing it, I walked, not through the Lovers door, but rather.

The High Priestess.

Oh.

The goosebumps on me when I realized what I did.

I walked out with my friend into the open playa, we had little adventures and saw much art, but that door stood open in my heart and I embraced what I needed to do next.

Then I took little actions.

I”m not saying that Burning Man completely made it clear to me that I was supposed to follow this path, but yes, as a matter of fact, it did.

I was also ready for change and despite being in a lot of fear about what it would look like, I knew that it had to happen.

I remember that night when I got back to camp after the event had opened the gates and the masses held back with the rain had been let in, I sat down in the little Bambi Airstream, my gilded cage, and booted up this very laptop.

I looked up CIIS on the web and I RSVP’d the open house for fall 2015 admissions.

And well.

Jesus on a raft.

It looks like I’m going.

Especially as I just paid the non-refundable enrollment fee of $300 to hold my spot.

I also tried to navigate the financial aid forms too, but I got a little overwhelmed and stopped.

Enough actions for today, I need to remember to enjoy this, this feeling, rich in gratitude, love, abundance, joy.

I can take tonight and bask in the glow.

I believe I have earned it.

I won’t be resting on my laurels for long, I promise.

But for the moment.

Oh.

It does feel good.

It does.

I’m going back to school!

 

 

You Seem Really Happy

February 19, 2015

That’s always a positive response on a first date.

Yup.

Knocked one out of the cafe.

Park, seems, so, cliché, but cafe, where we sat, drinking tea and hanging out, feels about right.

He asked me later if I was going to blog about it.

Of course I am.

Not about him.

But about the date, why yes.

If it pertains to my life, then I am blogging about it.

That’s what I do.

I do have boundaries and I try to be discreet and I do my best to not involve other people; it’s taken some practice and I haven’t always been the best at it, but I do leave others out.

Especially should they be in my circle of people.

I will say I had a nice time, there was laughter, we have some things in common, he has nice blue eyes, I could see myself having another date, there was a connection, and dare I say a little chemistry.

That’s nice.

He bought my tea and got there early.

I appreciate that.

The small things count.

I like my door being opened, I like having a tea waiting for me, or flowers, or a thoughtful gesture, it means that it means something.

I got half way through my day and I have to admit, going on a date was the last thing on my mind, it was there, the thought, the anticipation, but by the time I was half way through the work day I was wondering if I was going to get out of it alive.

Let alone have any sass or sparkle for a first date.

But it feels like it went well and we acknowledged that there was more to explore there and mutually agreed to another date.

Nothing has been set up.

If he wants to see me further, he knows my number.

And enough about me that a second date shouldn’t be too difficult to negotiate.

We also talked about the fact that we are dating.

Though we are both looking for monogamous relationships, yay!  We are both seeing other people, we both have dates set up for this weekend with other folks.

I received a few texts this morning at the park while I was still in the early part of my day and didn’t know that I was going to be run over with the demands of potty training, nap time melt downs, things getting thrown in restaurants, and the general melee that just sometimes happens with little boys.

It was a nice moment to get the texts from the other gentleman I’ll be seeing this Friday.

We caught up over the weekend, he was out-of-town in the East Coast and in the crazy weather, and confirmed that we would be meeting this Friday for tea at a cafe in the Church and Market area.

Excellent.

I’m really doing this dating thing.

It’s happening.

I also responded to an OkStupid ask and said I would be up for a coffee date with a gentleman from Alameda.

Which is sort of breaking my date only in the city rule.

I had one gentleman in San Jose ask me out and get a little pushy about it.

I just don’t see sustaining a relationship with someone who has to commute to date.

There’s more than enough fish in the sea here in San Francisco.

But the guy on OkStupid had one of the best, if not the best profiles I have ever seen.  We are also an 89% match, which is a huge plus, and he’s tall-6’5″.

Mama can wear her heels out dancing.

Thank you very much.

So I said yes to a coffee with him as well, although we have set nothing up yet.

Life.

It is happening.

What else is happening?

Oh yeah.

This.

Hello Carmen,

You are scheduled for an interview on Thursday February 26th at 3pm in room 210.

This message was in my inbox when I got back from my evening out tonight.

I have a date to interview for the cohort at CIIS for the Masters program in Integral Counseling Psychology.

Yikes.

This is happening.

I mean, this is really happening.

I told my employer this week, yesterday, now that I think of it, that I was going to be interviewing soon and would let them know when.

Next Thursday.

Holy crow.

I am very grateful I got my shit together and applied for student financial aid last week.

It feels like it’s moving along.

I’m going to be going to graduate school.

Who is this person?

I mean, yeah, I have wanted to go to graduate school for a while, there’s something about having a Master’s that appeals to my ego in a hard-core way.

But I never, not once, suspected that it would be to get a Masters so that I could be a therapist.

Huh?

Aren’t I the one that needs therapy?

Ha.

I suspect that will be part of the program as well.

A week from tomorrow.

Wow.

Makes dating seem like no big deal.

Which I feel like is the point of asking as many guys as I have and trying new things and putting myself out there, do it so much that it becomes no big deal.

“You need to date a bunch of guys, five or six, all at the same time,” was the suggestion.

Now in my mind, which is diseased, let me not forget that, I hear, “you need to sleep with five or six guys all at the same time.”

Well.

Um.

Not at exactly the same time, but you know what I mean.

I have this thing where I am used to just seeing one person at a time, not actively dating a bunch and finding who works out and who doesn’t.

I have an idea, an old one, that I have to be loyal to the person I am on a date with, see it all the way through, and if it works, fantastic!

And if it doesn’t, wait until it’s completely obvious and then move on to the next guy.

Turns out I don’t have to do this.

I really don’t know what actions I have to do or take or how many dates it takes to get to the middle of the Tootsie Roll Pop, but I am willing to try things that are outside my bag, my small bag, of dating tricks.

And oh yes, have fun.

If it’s not fun, than it’s not worth doing.

Light, easy, no getting caught up in expectations.

Just show up and see what happens.

I suspect my interview will be much the same next Thursday.

Eek!

I really am doing this.

All in baby.

Graduate school, dating, life.

That’s how I roll.

You’re Going To Get Old

September 20, 2014

Anyway.

Might as well do it with panache.

And daring.

And walk through the fear.

I received the materials today from the graduate program that I have been looking at and realized, fuck.

I don’t have all the pre-requisites.

I would have to put off the program for another year.

I got abysmal.

I trashed the program materials in the recycling.

Then I called a friend.

Who would know about having to do more school than she thought to get her degree and it was really good to get some perspective and the fact is that I do want to do this and I do think I would make a really great child psychologist.

I do.

The program is five years.

I would have to do the pre-requisite classes, which would add-on another year.

But.

Then.

Hey, you know, I would be a doctor.

Not a medical doctor, no, but a doctor and I could teach and I could have a private practice and I could lead a richer fuller life by helping others lead richer fuller lives.

I wanted to cancel on the open house I RSVP’d to.

I did not.

I wanted to throw up my hands in the air and say, what am I doing?  Am I just having the same experience that happens, quite frequently, it would seem, am I just having another weird side winding wonk at a career?

Am I grasping for something that will fulfill me?

Because I don’t need a thing or a career or a person to do that.

So.

More investigationship is what is needed.

I will go to the open house and I will talk with advisors and maybe there’s a different program, maybe I get my MFT and I practice as a therapist and not as a psychologist.

Maybe I find out I am not interested in the degree at all.

But I have to explore it.

Too many things seem to be pointing at the program and I am not going to ignore all those signs.

I am just going to show up for the next action and ask questions, exploring my options is not only the smart thing to do, it’s the only thing to do.  I cannot figure it out on my own.

I mean a child therapist is still a noble career and I know I would be great at it.

I am not afraid of the work.

I am a bit afraid of the financial bits and pieces.

But then I think, if it’s what is supposed to be it will fall into place and it will be obvious.

I mean a month ago I had no idea I would be starting a new job today.

Which is what I did.

I started a new job.

This family wasn’t even on my radar, I didn’t even know they existed, I was out in the high Black Rock Desert getting my pre-event Burning Man on.

I knew that my time with the family I was working with was probably going to be ending, but I did not think it would end the way it did or the manner it did, I didn’t expect two weeks with no work, but it was perfect, I had a great staycation–ferry-boat ride to Larkspur, lunches at the Ferry Building, a lot of iced coffees, reading books in the back yard, going to the Legion of Honor and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, sleeping in, having lunch with friends–and I interviewed with and got the job with a new family.

I also passed my back ground check.

“Squeaky clean!”

Not even a speeding ticket.

I joked with a friend of mine that I had delusions of Grand Theft Auto Grandeur.

Like I had done something felonious in nature and just like, I don’t know, forgot it, and it was going to come up in the back ground check and oops, no job for you!

But that’s not how it worked.

I got the job.

I am above-board.

I am being taxed and doing it right and I have a signed contract and benefits and paid holidays and days off.

I have employment that will carry me forward while I explore graduate school.

I am supposed to go to graduate school.

I know it.

I have always believed I would.

This time feels like the time.

I have a gut feeling and I am going to go with it.

And the doubting, well, it may come up again, but I can keep on exploring until the right fit happens.  And the doubt, it’s just a habit, one I have broken in regards to so many other things that it doesn’t even really seem applicable.

Sort of like an old habit that pops up once in a while to say howdy.

I can just wave and move on.

The dream is this:

My own practice in my own home in my town–San Francisco.

I know that’s a lot to bite off.

But that’s what I want.

I want to own a home in San Francisco and have a private practice out of my home wherein I am a top child psychologist/therapist.

That’s the dream.

At least the dream this week.

I have had the dream of wanting to be a writer in my own home in San Francisco too.

The dream typically has a house attached to it.

Sometimes, but not always, in fact, more infrequent than I might care to mention, there is not a family or a man attached to that dream.

Just me.

A house.

My own studio space, writing space, office space, and my own practice.

Therapy.

Children’s therapy.

Sunny, bright, warm, trees, play area, cozy couches and cushions and stuffed animals and play therapy and helping kids.

I have a dream about a picket fence and children.

The children don’t have to be mine biologically.

The house, while I don’t plan on birthing it, I do want to be mine.

Ah.

I have plans.

Yes I do.

I don’t have to know what is going to happen.

I just need to take another little step through on this path.

Show up for a new job, be a good employee, work with two new little boys, love the home I get to be a part of, be present, and then, go to the open house next Saturday and just ask some questions.

That’s all.

Nothing to it.


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