Posts Tagged ‘Masters in Integral Counseling Psychology’

Feeling A Little Bit

May 8, 2016

Screwed.

Fuck.

I am wide awake.

My last class of the day was really energizing and fun and my professor was on fire and the lecture was great and my brain was firing on all pistons.

And.

Then.

We had a dance party.

I was only going to stay twenty minutes, half hour tops.

Ugh.

I stayed until the security guard was kicking us out of the building.

Sigh.

I have to do my final presentation on my last paper for Multi-Cultural class tomorrow.

And.

I am the first one up.

I had thought I was going to go today, be the last person to speak and get it out of the way.

Nope.

Le sigh.

Oh well.

It did give me some space though to explore a few ideas and I really like what I found in that exploration as well as somethings to talk about in my last therapy dyad of the year.

Of the year.

It’s almost done.

Not really.

But.

Classes are almost complete.

I have two more classes tomorrow and I’ll be done by 4p.m.

One of my girlfriends and I are going to hang out, grab some sushi, do some doing the deal and have a sleep over.

It’s a slumber party!

She skipped the dance party and I think she will be much more well rested than I.

That being said, I am super glad that I went and got some of the energy out of my system, some of the anxiety of being in school and just a little body release.

My back is still a little tender from yoga and I was bunched up in desk/chair all day long.

Grateful to get in my body, get into the music and play with my fellows and cohort for a little bit.

I’m sure I will rue the decision tomorrow as I get up to my 6:30 a.m. alarm.

Oh well.

I am glad I went to the party, I was glad to show up, I was glad to dance, I was glad to free myself, for a moment in time, from the constraints of note taking, processing, reading, writing, interacting, engaging, showing up for, and the whole she-bang.

So even though I am wound up and energized I’m ok with it.

I’m sure I’ll crash at some point tomorrow, I’ll fade, I’ll need a coffee injection or five, but I will be ok.

I’m a little concerned about the next week and getting all the things together that need to come together–10-12 page paper on the concepts of transference and counter transference, a take home exam, a paper on The Trauma of Language and Lancanian theory, a posting to Applied Spirituality and a final small paper for that class as well 2-4 pages.

I’ll get it all done.

I know I will.

My friend from cohort and I who had made plans to go to the Steampunk Masquerade Ball at NIMBY consorted and decided we both had too much work due by next weekend to feel comfortable going out to the event.

I will be getting the things done that I need to do so that I can fly out the next weekend to the Big Apple.

New York.

I’m coming for you.

Which reminds me I need to get a hold of my friend in Brooklyn and ask about his place and how I get in and all that since he’s out of the country when I’m there.

I still can’t quite believe that I have a place to stay in Brooklyn.

I should see if my friend wants anything from San Francisco.

I want to bring a guest gift.

Seems appropriate when he could have Air BnB’d his place and made bank while he was on his trip and he’s not charging me to stay there.

I love my friends.

I am such a lucky girl.

I couldn’t have gotten through the grad school program without some of the women that I met in the cohort.

Extremely grateful.

Extremely privileged to get to know these woman.

And men.

There’s been a great TA who I have really connected with and he’s been such a source of support and connection, as well as one of the guys in my cohort who I actually interviewed with, way, way, way back last year in March.

Hard to believe that I have come so far.

Seems like just yesterday that I was filling out the application and sending in my letters of recommendation and getting my transcripts.

So much has happened.

So much still has to happen.

But I can see that this chapter is coming to a close and I am grateful to share that experience of saying good bye to the cohort, the school, the year that I have been a first year grad student.

“Oh, it’s official,” he said to me as we were chatting.

He being a second year student in the program.

“You’re second year now,” he added definitively.

Well.

Almost.

I have to get through tomorrow and knock out those papers, but yes, I am almost a second year graduate school student.

It feels pretty good.

It feels a little surreal.

But over all I am super proud of all the work I have done and shown up for.

I read all the things, I have turned in all the papers on time, so far, shown up for every class, every lecture, every dyad.

Yup.

I did not miss a single day of school.

That is in itself a mighty thing.

And I remind myself of that again and again.

Just show up.

And right now.

I just need to show up for bed.

I have to wind this down.

I need a few hours of sleep to finish out the weekend.

So close I can taste it.

So.

So.

So close.

than this: where I does not exist, nor you,
so close that your hand on my chest is my hand,
so close that your eyes close as I fall asleep.

 

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Getting The Swing of Things

August 13, 2015

I am feeling so much better than yesterday.

Although I have to say, this morning.

Not so much.

I had a moment of, “fuck this.”

Yes.

Yes.

Yes.

I did.

But I also knew that moment was fleeting, a feeling, not a reality, an emotion that would go once I gave it some space to move on.

I was emotionally hung over from the night before.

I cried so much yesterday in my last class of the day and the emotions were so high for everyone involved, I was not the only person experiencing that and the flavor of the morning was subdued.

Suffice to say, I got to move through it, although I did find myself in tears again this morning discussing a point of view with the class, articulating how I was feeling and have felt some contempt prior to investigation with the program.

How I really have spent some time talking myself into this.

Is this the right program?

Am I doing this right?

I don’t fit in?

Or do I?

What are my goals, what do I want out of the experience, how do I move forward in a cohesive way, how to balance work and needing to cover my expenses with what is happening and what I have to do and the expectations of the teachers and what they each are looking for.

I leaned over to my class mate after I said my piece and how I felt that it was way too soon to already be crying.

She laughed and said she’d had a big cry before coming to class, so I was right on time.

And I know.

Get used to it kid.

It’s terrifying and awesome and amazing and completely new.

I have never had an experience like this and I am only three days into a three-year process.

When I extrapolate it out it’s going to be a much longer process than that, but from here to the degree is three years.

Three years time is going to pass no matter what I do, might as well get my Masters in Integral Counseling Psychology, I mean what else am I going to do?

And that’s not the full story, it’s just a part of the narrative I tell myself, because I have tried other programs and I have tried getting into other schools and the door was always shut, always blocked.

I have checked out education programs at San Francisco State, I have sat in on open houses, I have gone to City College, I applied to and was turned down by UCSF for their creative writing MFA program, same with a number of other places and spaces and programs.

But this program has opened to me and when ever I was uncertain something would happen, something would shift and I would get clear direction about how to continue to move forward.

Always, every time, every day from the first day that I posited maybe I should do this.

Maybe when he said to me last year at Burning Man, “you’re a child psychologist being paid babysitter wages,” I could have balked at it, turned away from it, not allowed myself to hear it.

But I was so open and hurting from the conflict with my boss, which was really just a conflict with myself and how I have to find the words to ask for what I need and if the job, whatever job, is one in which those needs can’t be met, I find another.

There are absolutely no scarcity of jobs for me.

In fact, I was offered a job today at lunch.

At least, I was felt out for a possible job and that felt good.

Not to say I have any plans on leaving the family I work for, but if they can’t provide me with what I need and I am going to have to ask for a raise, I should have already, but should have doesn’t serve, I just get to look at what i have been given, acknowledge that I have job security, that I have financial security.

Whether it comes from the family I am with or another.

I will be taken care of.

The more I learn these lessons the more I am going to be of service to my future clients.

I like saying that.

Clients.

I am going to be a therapist and I can tell I am going to be a good one.

Perhaps that feeling of knowing is where I find the most fear and also the most freedom, to acknowledge a set and defined career goal.

Not that I necessarily know where that path leads, or what divergence it may take, just that I am on it, I am on it for a reason, and I am going to be good at it.

I am good already.

Meaning.

I showed up.

I have not left.

I have not dropped.

I am on time.

i have been doing my best to keep up with the readings and I take notes like a motherfucker.

In fact, I can see I will be investing in a lot of pens, I am a note taker and a underliner and I like that, it helps me to assimilate the knowledge in my head.

I am learning more than I know as well.

Not just about the coursework, but about myself and these small revelations are just as worth note as the bigger ones, the “I made it into graduate school ma” kinds of epiphanies, I am learning about myself, my way of being in the world and showing up the way I do has been noted.

I am seen.

I am heard.

I am getting into it.

I am grateful for this.

And that I have a fucking awesome professor for my Therapeutic Communications course.

I’m excited by working with him.

Anxious too, but happy, and enthralled and he makes me sit up and pay attention.

I was in his class six hours today and it whipped by.

I was almost surprised when it was time to go and I look forward, very much, to working with him more and I am over the moon to feel the connection to the class and to the professor and to myself.

I can do this.

I am doing this.

I am a graduate school student.

Holy shit.

I’m doing this!

It’s a nice feeling.

I have trepidations still, but, I also have faith.

And that is where I will plant myself.

Secure in the knowledge that it’s all happening and as long as I show up with integrity and kindness for myself today.

The rest will follow.

It always does.

There Are No Words

June 23, 2015

I mean.

Really.

There are no words.

So.

I’ll let the e-mail speak for itself while I try to catch my breath and let my tea cool off enough to sip on it.

Spontaneous crying may happen at any point in the writing of this blog, FYI.

To wit this is the e-mail I opened an hour ago:

Dear Carmen,

Congratulations!  On behalf of the California Institute of Integral Studies Diversity Leadership Scholarship Committee, I’m happy to inform you that you’ve been selected as a recipient of the J.C. Kellogg Integral Counseling Psychology Scholarship. This scholarship provides recipients with $10,000.00 per school year for the 3 years of the ICP/W Programs.

The Financial Aid office will be sending you a revised Awards Package in which this scholarship will be included.

Wishing you all the best!

With warm regards, Pauline

Pauline E. Reif, MA, MFA

Admissions Counselor

California Institute of Integral Studies

I can barely breathe.

I don’t have to take out student loans.

ANY.

NOT A FREAKING ONE.

The Opportunity Scholarship I was awarded was for tuition solely, nothing to sneeze at, let me remind you–$50,000–basically paying, directly, my first four semesters of six semesters of tuition.

Now.

To get this.

To be recognized again.

I.

Oh.

There’s the tears.

Pause.

Breathe.

This means that I won’t as I said, have to take out any additional student loans, suffice to say I am still paying on my undergraduate student loans, $32,000 left on that.

Anyone feeling like paying those off, you just let me know.

It’s the only debt I have.

No credit cards, no scooter payments, no words, no freaking words.

I called my best friend and relayed the news and she said I should run around barefoot in the grass like Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music.

She, Julie Andrews character, was a nanny too!

Nanny’s be getting it on.

I kicked off my flip-flops, tumbled down the flagstone steps and ran around the paddock of grass that encircles the back of the house here at Stone Tree–laughing, crying, sharing with my friend the news, slightly hysterical, definitely giddy.

Normally I would have read that e-mail much sooner, but I have been busy with the little boy wrangling and the swimming and the black berry picking and the wild plum harvest and the walking the dog and taking pictures and soaking up the sun.

It wasn’t until I was sitting on the back patio, all the boys fed, watching a movie with the parents, that I picked up my phone to check my messages and to have a cup of tea while the sun set, golden spiced and delicious, fingers of shadows blue indigo ripe and full of barn swallows reveling in their dinner at dusk.

I was also texting with a friend, said friend who I get to see on Friday in LA for much museum sightings and plain old celebrations.

Seriously.

I get to celebrate more.

I don’t know how to do that, I am so overwhelmed with it, but I do know how to be grateful, I do know how to humbly accept with thanks the gifts that have been given to me, I get to see how important it is that I walk through these doors and take these gifts and share them with my fellows, my community, my family.

I just.

Whew.

Lost my train of thought.

Trying to breathe and take it all in.

It’s a lot to take in.

And.

Knowing, having the faith that once I started the process that I just had to continue to show up, one day at a time, one moment, giving my best in each moment, being utterly present and myself.

Life is going to happen.

But life without more student loans is also going to happen.

I am so honored.

I’m going to work so hard.

I’m still going to work for my family, of course, I just found out that I won a full ride to school, not a full ride to live in San Francisco.

I make enough working full-time at what I do to live a sweet, comfortable life, with good food in my fridge, a snick of money in my savings account for emergencies and the basics pretty well covered.

My rent and cost of living is below average in San Francisco.

I’m going to have to work, but I won’t have to work as much.

And since the family is going to only need me part-time when the boys are both in matriculation one in pre-school and the other in kindergarten; it works out that I have the right work environment to support my graduates school endeavors.

I won’t have to take out student loans, I won’t have to take out student loans, I won’t have to take out student loans.

Pardon me.

I am crying again.

I spent the day gamboling with the dog, picking blackberries, digging trenches with the boys, playing tag, swimming, it’s a nice pool I felt so happy to be in the water, I even did a few laps and I suspect that I will do a solo swim on my own at some point.

Maybe even tonight when the families get all the boys tucked in for the night.

I will definitely go outside and watch the stars and let the tears fall and though I am alone, I know I am not lonely.

I have friends.

I have family.

I have support and love and kindness immeasurable in my life.

I am the luckiest girl in the world.

And I get to go to LA?

Please.

Who is this woman?

I was talking to my person earlier today as I walked through the garden, checking out if any of the produce was ready to be picked, nothing yet, but some fresh herbs and the berries and plums, which I was happy to just pop into my mouth, and I expressed that I was so astounded by my life.

And this was before I got the second scholarship news.

I saw this arc of my life, this huge parabola of experiences that I have had and marveled, utterly marveled at how I have come this far.

So far.

From being in the back of that VW Bug when I was four, running across country, with my mom and her boyfriend, my little sister and two cats (and let us not forget the large screen television set that took up half of the back seat–which was why I was in the nook between the back seat and the window, my nest of pillows bolstering my view of the passing sky) running away from an eviction, to another uncertain and tenuous beginning for my mom back in Wisconsin.

To now.

The drive up here to Sonoma, the sun, the color of the sky, the dusty grass-covered hills, the spreading oaks and my heart, so full, so open to everything.

And then this?!

Jumping Jesus on a pogo stick.

I really have no words.

Even though I just wrote a 1200 word blog.

Bahahahahaha.

Thank you God.

Thank you friends, family, community, my fellowship, my employers, everyone.

Thank you everyone.

I wouldn’t be where I am without you.

And where I’m going isn’t worth going without you too.

I heart you to the moon and back a 1,000 times.

I love you “this big.”

I mean.

THIS BIG.

SO BIG.

So very big.

There are no words.


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