Posts Tagged ‘principles’

Little Gold Star

January 20, 2019

Today I got my 14th star tattoo.

14 stars.

14 years of being sober.

I decided I need to give myself a gold star.

It’s been that kind of year.

When I reflected on all the things that I went through and all the places I’ve been, I think that I definitely earned it.

This past year I traveled to DC, New York, Paris, and Marseilles.

I graduated with a Master’s degree in Psychology.

I went through a buy out and moved.

That was some serious stress let me tell you.

I also started a private practice therapy business.

And.

A PhD program.

I also got my grades back from said program.

All “A”s.

ALL.

I was a little surprised to tell you the truth, I had an issue with a final paper I turned in for one of my classes and I didn’t think it was going to fly, the paper, that is–I digressed from the specific instructions the professor gave and did rather what I wanted to do.  It was the only paper for the class, although there were so many discussion posts that I feel like I actually wrote seven papers for the class, and I ran a huge risk doing it.

The risk paid off.

So, yeah, a gold star felt really appropriate.

2019-01-19 20.54.20-2

Yes.

It did hurt.

And it felt really right and I was, obviously, very happy with it.

Not only was I pleased with it, but it filled out the space perfect.  I am very satisfied with the way all my tattoos look and really have little desire to put anything else in that area.

Not sure where I’ll put the 15th, but let’s just let me focus on the 14th star.

It really was quite a year.

I walked through some really challenging things and came out the other side.

I reflected on a lot of that today as I went about my day.

I saw clients at my office, did lots of writing, read for one of my upcoming classes for this next semester (school starts next Thursday!), went to Let it Bleed on Polk Street, got an iced coffee for a treat, walked around the Tenderloin and took graffiti photographs, caught up with my friend DannyBoy at the shop, took myself out to lunch in Hayes Valley, had a coffee with a friend in the Mission at Maxfield’s House of Caffeine, went to Divisadero and got my nails done, and then hit my Saturday night commitment and did the deal.

It was a day.

I’m really happy with my life right now.

Oh, sure, romantically it’s strange, but you know, that will work itself out.

Or not.

I have ceased (fighting anyone or anything) trying to figure it out.

I’m just showing up every day and taking care of myself and I feel really good about what I did today for myself and my own care.

I also thought a lot about what I want to bring forward for this next year.

Get through the next semester of classes, add clients into my private practice, travel.

I also want to get through the Below Market Housing Homeowners workshop.

I really am going to go after buying a house in San Francisco.

My friend whom I met for coffee happens to be a realtor and we spent an hour going over what I need to do to get myself in line to actually do that.

She gave me a good idea of how much money I will need to have saved up, which will take some time (or not, who knows, money may fall out of the sky) to save, but I can do it.

Plus that I should get a credit card.

Which I’m not super stoked on the idea.

I had one that I’d gotten last year and then never used as it made me uncomfortable.

But.

My friend insisted I was really going to need a credit history that showed me paying off a card.

She said get one, pay it off every month and always pay more than the minimum payment.

If I do get another card, and that’s an if, I will definitely not let a balance roll over.

I just do not like the idea of having any credit card debt.

I do, however, like the idea of having a good credit score and something that shows I am a good risk for a home loan.

I shall take it under advisement.

I actually tried to re-open the credit card I had closed but I could not figure out how to do it and just sort of set it aside tonight when I got home.

I feel like I did a lot today just by sitting down and talking about it.

I will manifest a house in San Francisco.

See if I don’t.

In the mean time there is plenty of other things for me to do.

I do want to keep a soft focus on it though, always have it in my mind and see where I can expand my awareness of abundance.

I am continuing to practice that opening up to the universe, to the flow, to God, to abundance, I have continued to give away a little more than I typically do.

More tip in the tip jar, more money in the basket, continuing to pay my bills within 24 hours of getting them.

And!

Oh my gosh, this is definitely part of the gold star, I got approved to become an employee at my internship.

Which means that I will start bringing in more money.

I am so psyched about that.

I’m excited for this year.

I feel like all sorts of incredible things are going to happen.

I really do.

Faith.

I like that.

Faith, abundance, joy, honesty, integrity, serenity.

Words to live by.

Principles to underpin my gold star.

And!

Love.

Let me not forget that one.

Never forget that.

Seriously.

 

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Being Proactive

July 9, 2018

I got a lot done today!

I also forgot a couple of times what day of the week it is.

Heh.

It is not often that I have the luxury of forgetting what day of the week it is, but I did today.

It was sort of nice to just do the next thing in front of me and let go of the results.

Life goes pretty smooth when I do that.

I am happy to report I got up and went to yoga.

Two days in a row!

And despite having the next few days “free” in the mornings, I won’t make another yoga class until Thursday or possibly Friday.

The classes available don’t quite fit my schedule.

A schedule that does have a few time slots of delicious opening, but that I have made some time to see friends and do lunches, grab coffees, catch up and connect.

I’d rather connect with friends right now than worry about making another yoga class appear in my schedule.

Suffice to say.

I am glad I went though, it felt good and I felt good for going.

I also did meet with a lady today and do the deal and I got a lot of work done to apply for the paid internship that I have been researching.

Namely.

I updated my resume for the position and I reached out to two supervisors to write me letters of recommendation.

Both gave me a resounding yes they would be happy to do so.

That felt really good.

I’m about half way done with what the application requires for the internship.

There’s a lot they want to see.

The rest of it is a matter of sitting down and doing some writing and figuring out a mission statement for myself and my vision of a private practice.

Fortunately, in my last semester one of my classes, Integrative Seminar, made a big point about this and I feel like all I have to do is go back through the notes I took to be able to give the internship what it’s looking for.

I also have to do a business plan.

That feels a little more challenging, but they have some templates and I’ve been reading over everything and I believe I can come up with something that will do the job.

It is certainly good practice no matter what comes of it.

I do feel good about the internship though, my friend whom I spoke to about it really felt that I would be a good fit and after speaking with her, I feel the same.

I also have to acknowledge that in the 8 days since I found out the internship that I thought I would have had fallen through I have done a lot of footwork to find a new one.

I have researched and reached out.

I had a coffee date to sit with my friend and find out if it was a good fit for me.

I reached out to two supervisors for letters of recommendation.

I also reached out to the woman who I was going to intern with and asked her if she still had any interest in renting out office space to me.

I don’t know that it makes sense for me to rent my own office.

In fact.

I don’t think that I could afford it.

Hell.

When I look at what’s available on craigslist as I navigate through my current living situation, I can’t afford what’s out there to rent, let alone a full-time office space.

The best bet for me is to do what my friend does, she shares the office she works out of with another therapist.  She’s in her office two days a week with clients, the other five days the licensed MFT is using it.

I figure that the woman who was going to supervise me does have office space availability, I mean she did when we talked and unless something has changed she probably still does.

Thus the email inquiry.

I also asked if she might still want to supervise me, but under the auspices of the internship who would pay her the rent on the office and pay her a fee for supervision and then the internship with take out admin fees from my account and whatever is left over would be my paycheck.

It will probably take some months before I even get money, but if I do it right and I work at it in a steady way, I could be making a decent amount after about half a year.

Not enough to quit being a nanny, not by far, but enough to help pay the bills and maybe go down to part-time nannying instead of full-time.

Of course.

I also have my school program coming up to contend with.

I have been thinking it will be much like my Masters degree the last year of it, working pretty much full-time as a nanny for my current family, seeing clients after work, and then doing my homework on the weekends.

I will slowly accrue hours.

And that will be alright.

As long as I’m not stagnating.

It’s work, but work towards an end goal.

And I really like being a therapist.

It feels good and right and it feels like this is how I bring more love into the world.

I saw the Mister Rogers movie, “Won’t You Be My Neighbor” today with my person.

It was so good.

I was so happy he persuaded me to put aside our recovery work for an afternoon and just go duck into a movie theater and watch an amazing movie.

If you haven’t seen it, go!

It was astounding.

And I grew up watching Mister Rogers, so it felt especially poignant.

I also appreciated it and the principles of spirituality, basic child psychology, inclusion, and love that he was obviously basing his life work around.

It was a beautiful movie and I left feeling hopeful and happy that as things progress it’s all going to work out.

I just have to keep love in my heart and be honest in my person.

I have faith I can do that.

I really do.

Don’t Stop Writing

June 4, 2017

I was told recently.

“I like reading what you write.”

God.

I love that.

Validation.

Although it’s not why I write and I am struggling with that.

Let go, I whisper to myself.

But.

It’s hard to let go of something that I have been in relationship with for seven years.

I have to shut down my blog.

I haven’t written the last few days and I can feel it in my bones.

Actually, that’s not true.

I have been writing, a lot.

Just not my blog.

I have been busy.

And the not writing I can take with a great big grain of salt because I was busy doing wonderful things and having life altering experiences.

Life is happening.

My God, is it ever.

I started my internship.

I take my first client next week.

I have read my client file, contacted said client and set up our first session.

I am navigating all the paper work and all the insurance stuff, more stuff, all the stuff, the policy papers and the keys, oh my God, the keys, I have a lot of keys right now.

Which is fine.

I jangle when I walk, but whatever.

Today I had my first group supervision training.

It was great, I learned a lot, it’s rather like being in a small classroom and getting to ask the teacher all the things, and I took some notes and got the questions I needed answered.

Most of my questions had to do with administrative stuff as I haven’t met with a client yet.

All the others in the group have been seeing clients and thus they brought up what they needed to have addressed.

It was great learning for me to just sit and listen and I did have some input and that was nice, I was able to see a few things and offer some different perspective and I was thanked for my experience and my insight.

Which I appreciated as well.

I also asked about my blog.

This blog.

My baby.

My love child.

My little place in the universe to pour out my heart and talk about all the stuff on my heart and in my mind, or to get out all the stuff in my mind so that I can listen to my heart better.

I have known, probably since I started school, that one day the blog was going to end.

But.

The writing doesn’t have to end.

And that was what my supervision group gave me today.

I got very affirmative feedback from everyone to take down the blog off social media and make it completely anonymous.

I have already pulled it from my Instagram account and I privatized that account so random folks can’t join it, I have to approve the follow request.

I have also dropped a few folks off the friends list on Facecrack.

I could probably winnow that out a little more as well.

It was recommended that I change my name on Facecrack.

I’m not sure to what, but I know a few people in my cohort have already started doing that.

It’s a damn good idea.

The next suggestion was to not link my blog to Facecrack.

It would eliminate a lot of my readers.

I mean.

A lot.

But.

It would provide me with more anonymity and it would also give my client room to see me as a therapist, not as some poet girl, Burning Man aficionado, single lady in the Outer Sunset riding around the city on a scooter.

Then.

Sigh.

Ugh.

It was suggested and I knew the moment I heard it that it was the next action to take.

That I stop writing this blog.

Double ugh.

I knew it in my gut, but I teared up.

I am tearing up now.

Fuck.

I know that because I have such big feelings that I am going to be a great therapist because I can empathize, but shit, sometimes it’s just a bitch being sensitive.

Granted, I wouldn’t wear it any other way, that is, my heart on my sleeve.

 

Gerber daisies in a Mason jar.

Dark pink stars on slippery green stalks opening toward the light.

Petals kissing.

And blushing soft.

Mouths like hungry little beasts blossoming into the warm air.

My heart.

Threaded with light.

Opening and beating against the back of my ribcage.

Tender under the bruised spaces on my breastplate.

This then.

Each moment timeless and gone only to be longed for again.

And again.

And again.

 

I digress.

But you get the point?

I like to express.

I like poetry.

I lie.

I love poetry.

I am a whore for it, like cello music and Clair de Lune and Brahms and Mozart and Chopin, I prostrate myself to it and hope, really I do hope, to gracefully surrender to whatever beauty is taking me at that moment with a kind of asunder that only perhaps is heard inside my soul.

But hear it I do.

And to renounce this forum feels terrifying and sad.

So sad, the richness of sweet lipped tears on the tops of my cheeks and the sudden catch of my breath in my throat.

Oh.

All the feelings I don’t want to feel.

But.

OH.

All the feelings I get to feel, I am so grateful and graced and loved.

Beloved.

I am.

And I am aware of my great fortune.

But.

This then, begins the end of my blog.

I have to let you know I won’t stop writing.

Nope.

I just won’t be writing here any longer.

I will have an end date on Auntie Bubba.

She has been such a good girl to me and shown me my strengths, and oh yes, my defects, those in spades, all things intimate and good and intense and wounded and sad and well, just all the things.

Yes.

All the lovely things.

This bearing witness to my own journey.

I am forever grateful for it.

So.

As this chapter closes.

As the Book of Bubba comes to an end.

I will admit.

That I am not finished.

That I am not written out.

That there are more words and worlds of words and galaxies and yes, a universe to still discover and write about.

There is a theory about the Big Bang and how the universe was created and when the universe will end and that it all came from one spot and explodes out and then shrinks back in on itself.

This is called the Big Bounce.

This is all very general and not very theoretically informed, mind you.

However.

It speaks to me and what I endeavor now to share with you.

I will be starting a new blog.

I am not done.

This blog is, however, just about done.

I will only publish a few more blogs here.

I am not quite ready to say good-bye yet.

But it is only days away.

I will start a new blog and I will continue my writing, my growth, my learning, my pushing my edges and finding out more and more who I am through this medium that speaks so much to me.

Writing.

I will not be connecting it to my Twitter account, in fact I am damn close to doing a deactivation on my Twitter account, I don’t feel like I use it all the often any way.

I will not be posting my blog on Facecrack.

I will not be making it known who I am.

I will be writing anonymously.

I haven’t a name yet.

Just a taste on my lips, like the last kiss at the end of the night, the push of tongue into my mouth and the startled stillness in my heart that precursor to the shaking tremble that befalls me and  tells me, yes, here, go here.

I will consider sharing with some of my readers my new blog.

But you will have to message me privately.

Which you may do by posting a comment.

I approve all comments before they are linked to my blog.

I will message you my new blog when it goes live.

Otherwise, seven years later, I will bid this space adieu.

They say that after seven years all the cells in your body turn over.

I know not what will be next.

I just know that there is a next.

And I thank you.

My readers.

Who ever you are, where ever you are, for humoring me and my poetry and my words and my tears and my heart ever beating upon my bloody damn sleeve.

With so much gratitude.

I thank you.

 

Girl Date

May 30, 2017

I totally took myself out today.

I did it all.

First.

I let myself sleep the fuck in.

I mean, I didn’t get up until 9:15 a.m.

So sleeping in, especially considering that I am up three hours earlier tomorrow so that I can meet with my supervisor–whom I would have met with today but it was a holiday.

I totally treated it like a holiday as well.

I went to a yoga class that I used to be able to go before I started my current nanny gig.

I had lunch with my favorite, most loved person in the entire world.

Pause.

Let me just let that sink in.

I got to have lunch with the person I hold in the highest esteem, who loves me unconditionally, who sees me, who supports me without question, who witnesses everything I do, who helps me see when I am self-sabotaging, and how to change that and be better and stronger and sweeter and softer and live my life to the fullest full definition of happy, joyous and free.

I mean.

That is an extraordinary gift.

We met at Souvla on Divisadero and had great big salads and talked and got totally caught up and I revealed myself and there was no shying away from me or judging, only complete sunshine and love.

I am beyond grateful for this man in my life, I wouldn’t have the life I have without him.

He is a human, don’t get me wrong, I am not putting him on a pedestal, he shows me how to be more human myself, more vulnerable, more willing to show up and more present in the moment when I do.

He is the greatest gift and I do not know what I would do without him.

We are even talking about making travel plans together.

We have talked about it before.

We travel in a similar way, carry on only, get situated, go get connected with fellows and then walk and see and witness and art and churches and more art and museums and cafes and sitting still next to each other and also knowing that we both are self-sufficient travelers, that neither of us is afraid to say, give me space, I want to do a wander on my own or nap or whatever.

We have mutual friends in Barcelona as well as Paris.

We are talking about going to Barcelona together and maybe taking the TGV to Paris or Marseille, probably Paris as we have friends there too and I will need very much to see my Parisian girlfriend and her new family.

Next May.

When I graduate from my Masters of Psychology program, a grand European tour with my mentor, I couldn’t really think of a better gift, his company means so much to me.

So.

Yeah.

Lunch was fucking fabulous and we also dished and laughed and I talked about needing to set firm boundaries around any extra nanny work that may try to weasel its way in when my employers are away in July.

And then he went his way and I went mine.

Off to the MOMA.

I wanted to catch the last day of the Matisse/Diebenkorn show.

Of course.

It was sold out, even as a member of the MOMA I couldn’t get in to see it.

And truth be told, I don’t really care a fig for Matisse, and I’ve seen so much of his work in Paris that I didn’t feel that I was missing out.

I could have my girl date with myself just fine wandering around all the other galleries without having to stand in the huge, and I do mean HUGE, line that was queued up for the show.

I strolled through the second floor galleries and got acquainted again with one of my favorite artists in the museum–Clyfford Still–1906-1980.  I adore his work, there is one painting especially that always gets me and I did my stare in awe and wonder at it for a good fair amount of time before taking myself for a cafe au lait at the Sight Glass cafe on the 3rd floor of the museum.

I sat and dreamily dreamed and people watched while sipping my coffee–days off always included cafe breaks and nursing a coffee while people watching.

Then I hit the Larry Sultan photography exhibit, which was extraordinary.

And.

Since everyone was in line for the Matisse/Diebenkorn show, the gallery was practically empty.

Heaven.

I got my art girl dose in heavy-duty.

Then having some time and seeing that the sun had decided to cut through the fog and make an appearance, I strolled through Yerba Buena Gardens, and yes, got another coffee, this time iced, and planted myself on the sheltered terrace of the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, sipped ice coffee and watched the clouds scut through the sky.

I am always so overwhelmed and grateful for the gardens and the art and the fountains and though the skyline has changed dramatically in the fifteen years I have been in San Francisco, there is still all this familiarity for the place I was sitting in.

How many times had I gone through that park high or drunk?

Smoking cigarettes and slamming extra caffeine to keep up with the high-end dining restaurant that I worked at, Hawthorne Lane, how many times had I caught cabs in front of the Metreon to go to my dealers or to have myself carried to the End Up or 1015 or some underground party.

So many times.

And the dread and the terror that was just below the surface of my skin, beating my heart with fear as I walked the paths through the garden to work, short cutting on my way to the restaurant to work a double to make up for all the money I blew on blow.

And.

Instead.

Twelve and a half years later.

Coiffed, sweetly dressed, yellow silk flower in my hair, expensive shoes on my feet, Hobo purse in my lap, having just left an exquisite show at the MOMA, I sit happy and serene, joyous and free, in that same space, quietly and consistently showing up to make amends to the area and to assuage that damage I did to myself.

So grateful I don’t have the words.

Although.

I have to say I will always keep striving to find them.

Grateful for sunshine, clarity, serenity, communicating my needs, being emotionally transparent.

For all the good things in my life.

For my life.

God damn.

Life is more than fair, you know, if it were fair, I’d be dead.

And I am so not.

I am exquisitely alive.

So.

Fucking.

Alive.

Luckiest girl in the world.

Seriously.

Stood Up

July 17, 2016

But not angry about it.

In fact.

I was rather relieved.

I sort of expected the guy to stand me up.

And since.

I had spent the previous half hour slowly sobbing into a puddle at Tart to Tart with my person and doing some inventory.

I was indeed relieved.

I was a hot mess.

Fact is, I still am.

Which happens, I forget, despite my exhortations to the universe to have a magical and amazing Saturday.

Instead it was just tender and raw, or it wasn’t, I was, I am.

I just have to change some stuff and I don’t feel comfortable with it.

Fear.

Fuck everything and run.

Or.

Face everything and recover.

I got some big prideful pants on right now and they are not serving me at all.

I have been having some issues with work, not being able to set a boundary, hoping that instead it will magically happen.

That somehow my employer will read my mind and know that I need a break.

But.

Nobody’s a fucking mind reader and people are too busy thinking about themselves, hey, look at me, I’m thinking about myself right now, and nobody knows what I need, except.

Well.

Fuck.

Me.

So.

I’m not getting the kind of break I need at work.

And I feel appalled to admit it, that I’m not some fucking super hero who can do it all.

I can’t.

I’ve been trying.

I know that I am owed a break and I don’t know how to ask for it or to express that I need a break from the whole family, not just the kids.

It’s something I keep going back to and feeling this horrid shame that I need something from my job other than the paycheck.

That to do my job well I have to get more of a break.

That being in the house with any kind of responsibility to it is not a break, it doesn’t matter that I have done it in the past, rolled along, taken my break when the kid is sleeping and sometimes the nap is long and it is lovely and sometimes the nap is short and hey, as a nanny I just roll with it.

But the family I work for, work’s from home and I feel like I have to be on at all times, that I am always being observed and it’s fucking exhausting.

And I keep saying.

Everything is fine, fine, fine.

But.

It’s not.

See, I know my job’s hard, and the people I work with, not my employers, but the people I do do the deal with, know it’s hard, a lot of friends and my school cohort know it’s a hard job. But the parents, they don’t see it that way.

Or maybe they do, I mean, I can’t read their mind either.

I just know that being in an environment in which the parents are always there is like being constantly supervised and scrutinized and I’m just not in a good spot with it at the moment.

I didn’t get out at all from the house this past week, except once to the farmer’s market with they boys, I didn’t go for a walk, I didn’t get to take them to the playground, I didn’t have respite or the relief that I find when I am out of the house and not under the eye of the parents or the monitors and camera’s.

I also know, acutely, that so much of this is also of my own making, that I need to speak up.

I have once.

It was really hard and the parents had a hard time hearing what I said and I got what I asked for, but it went away, slow and sure, and now I’m back at that point where I wonder if it’s just not time to go back to working with babies again.  Or have the conversation once again, I need a break, that I’m not getting enough structure to allow myself the flexibility to the job as well as I could be.

“There are so many jobs out there,” she said to me today, “so many.”

I have to do some more writing.

She suggested I write out exactly what I want and then just say it, regardless of consequence.

Fear says, oh conflict, oh confrontation, oh shit, you’ll lose your job and wind up being abandoned and alone and homeless in the park with a cat.

Fuck off.

I am so sick of that fear and I am so tired of doing this same fucking work.

So.

Change.

I have to change.

My employers don’t have to change.

I have to change.

I also have to lay off the beating myself up about it.

It doesn’t help.

I hate feeling tender and vulnerable and asking for what I need leads to those feelings.

I suspect because I had a lot of denial around my needs during times when I needed to have things met.

The basic things, shelter, food, clothes, love, nurturing, unconditional support.

I got what I got and it was good enough.

I am good enough and I don’t have to look to my job to be my joy or my identity.

I also get to practice in this relationship whatever it is that God needs me to be working on.

There is stuff here.

Obviously.

I’m in the job until I learn what I need to learn.

I am in the job until I fail to be of service to it.

Ironic that I can’t be of good service if I’m not taking care of myself, so the uncomfortable task of self-searching and being open for something new, whether it’s a new attitude and approach to this job or it’s looking for a job that will fit my needs better.

I need to know what my needs are.

I can surmise that the discomfort of not asking for a break is rapidly becoming harder to bear than the discomfort of not taking said break.

I am not a super hero.

I can’t be a super nanny.

I don’t want to burn out and I can’t be the best nanny if I’m nursing resentments.

All of them pretty much aimed at myself.

I’m a sitting duck.

I’m tired of shooting at myself.

I give up God.

Got some guidance?

I’ll take it.

Thanks man, I’m tired of learning this lesson.

I surrender.

Which.

In some circles is considered going over to the winning side.

I rather like the way that sounds.

The winning side is where it’s at.

Seriously.

 

Time To Edit

April 27, 2016

My mouth.

Or my pen.

Er.

My blog.

Haha.

Nope.

I mean.

Well.

Maybe.

I have done the thing where in I have facecrack friended a blind date before our first date.

It doesn’t feel like a blind date though, we’ve texted a lot, had a few phone calls and awkwardly face timed twice now.

We’ve got a date for Saturday and it’s been discussed that it’s going to be an all day date.

I also clarified if this was a hook up or a date.

Not that I am opposed to the hook up, he’s sexy and there’s chemistry already, so, there’s that, but it seems more than a hook up, there’s a lot of commonality.

Especially in the not drinking/drugging thing–he’s straight edge and well, if you haven’t figured out what I do you can always ask me privately, I’m not into breaking it all the way down on my blog, it’s um, not seemly.

Plus.

We both have loads of tattoos, always a plus.

Like pinball, baseball, music, books, and it’s apparent he’s intelligent.

I am liking it.

The only draw back is the distance.

I feel like I’m sort of breaking my own rule about dating someone on the other side of the bridge.

Hooking up might be different, but dating is a challenge with distance.

Never the less, there will be a day long date Saturday and I’ll know more at that point.

I’m tentatively excited.

I don’t want to have expectations.

They lead to resentments.

But.

Yeah.

There seems to be something here and of all the Tinder dates and matches he’s definitely head and shoulders above the rest.

So we have enough friends in common that we inevitably both posted on a mutual friend’s facecrack time line in regards to her anniversary today.

And there it was.

“I see you,” he texted me.

I laughed to myself.

I had already done the facecrack troll on his page.

I chided him a little, but totally said yeah, we can friend it up.

Despite being very well aware that all my blog posts are visible to anyone who friends me.

There’s a lot of incriminating shit here.

And.

There’s none at all, all at the same time.

I am transparent, most of the time, I put it out there and sometimes it ain’t pretty.

That’s ok.

If my blog scares him off, then well, it wasn’t meant to be.

I do know that I’ll most likely curtail any more writing about him.

Especially if this leads to dating, which I suspect it could.

No need to live in the future though, just taking it one moment, text, call, date at a time.

I have plenty, plenty, plenty on my plate.

The reading for school, the negotiating my last weekend of school–a lot of people want to have get togethers and hang out and such and I’m rather of the opinion that I would rather not, but I also kinda would.

I’m on the fence.

Like I said just a moment ago, I don’t have to figure it out now.

I know that I’m definitely hanging out with one of my girlfriend’s on Sunday, she’s goingt to crash over here and we’re going to have a slumber party.

And another of my girlfriend’s and I are going to the Steampunk Masquerade Ball at NIMBY the following weekend.

I like my cohort.

But I’m not sure I want to get real wrapped up in trying to spend time with everyone before the weekend is over.

I mean.

I’m still going to have to go to work and do the deal and I’ll have papers to finish before I head to New York too.

Ah.

See.

I can get caught up in the future so quick.

Be still my funny head and relax, all is good, I’m on track with my reading and I have a date for Saturday with someone I find funny, smart, sexy, and attractive, who I already know I can carry a conversation with and who won’t kiss me with beer breath.

I just keep showing up for what’s in front of me and the weekend will get here when it’s supposed to.

A little yoga.

A little work, a lot, boy, talk about work, today was a long play date with two other kids from school, I cooked up a storm and must have gotten a great work out in–all the toys I picked up, I cannot begin to count how many times I bent over and grabbed Lego’s or train tracks up off the floor, Magna Tiles, stuffies, blocks, Octonauts, books, markers, all the things.

A good bit of doing the deal.

I have a little something to do every night after work, someone to meet, somewhere to go, some church to sit in and get settled down about my life, recovery, all the jumble of work and school and time management and dating.

It’s been fun, though, this flirting.

I will not say that it hasn’t.

But yeah.

Thinking about it as I just texted him a good night thought, it’s time to not write about it anymore.

It’s not my place to reveal details and also, I know myself well enough to know I put my heart on my sleeve pretty damn quick.

Hell.

It’s usually out there all the time anyway, but I don’t need it to be seen so quick.

He may not have figured out the links to the blog yet anyhow, but I would rather him get to know me by hanging out with me.

And.

Well.

Since I feel this has potential, it’s got legs, it might go somewhere, well, then it’s mine to cherish and experience, keep private so to speak.

Oh.

No worries.

I’m sure there will be plenty of titillating things for me to write about.

Fuck.

I can make just about any blog I write provocative.

I’m a flirt.

At least in print.

Fingers crossed I can convey it in person.

Heh.

I’ll let you in on that.

I will be flirting.

And I will be wearing a dress.

Polka dots maybe.

Giggles.

See.

Already, an inside joke to myself.

I got to stop while I’m a head.

Nighty night

Y’all.

What Are You

January 11, 2016

Going to do with the rest of your night?

“Read,” I said.

But there was a hitch in my voice and my friend heard it, “you think you really need to read more tonight?”

Heh.

No.

Cuz mama done did a lot of fucking reading today, yo.

Fuck load.

ALOT.

In fact.

I finished the reading for my Psychodynamics course, my Multi-Cultural course, and my class on the Clinical Relationship.

I also got half way through the reading for my Professional Ethics and Family Law course.

I am in fact.

Done.

Done with the reading for tonight.

What do I want to do?

Rub one out and take a shower.

Sorry.

Folks.

Don’t mean to hurt your tender mercies, but fuck, I could use a little stress relief.

I could also do a load of laundry and yes, of course, I will write my blog and perhaps take a shower.

I am singing too and I was dancing for a little while too.

I can’t just sit on my ass all weekend and read.

I did get out a tiny bit today.

I rode my bicycle to the SafeWay and back.

Of course it rained.

I had to laugh.

The only time I got out of the house was when it rained.

But.

I got all the things I needed to get me through the week and into the school weekend.

The only thing I didn’t do was get my readers.

I will be calling Copy Central in the morning and if they’re ready I’ll hop on my bicycle and jam down before work.

I don’t necessarily need them, now that I have done the reading for the classes–the professors put it up on my student account–but I could stand to have the readers since I’ll want to review things before class, terms, etc.

Plus, I do better reading on paper, I just do.

The relief that I have for getting the reading in, though, it feels pretty grand.

I feel like I’m on good footing for the beginning of the second semester of classes.

And also that I am finding the time to take care of myself and do the work to such ends.

In fact.

Get this.

It is unethical to not take care of myself!

Seriously.

One of the ethical principles in my Professional Ethics class is literally self-care.

A person who is in what is considered a “helping profession” has an ethical responsibility to take good care of themselves.

To have boundaries.

To know what they need.

For self-honesty.

Which means I need to experience balance.

No.

I won’t do more reading tonight.

I don’t have to.

I do need to sing.

I do need to dance.

It wouldn’t hurt to chat with a friend.

I did meet with a lady bug and we did some reading and relating.

I did go to my spot up on Ulloa and 41st.

I got a ride from a new friend I met there last week, which is nice, getting to know ladies in the hood.

I unexpectedly had lunch yesterday with another woman in the neighborhood.

Friends are good where I live because my best girlfriends live across the bay and sometimes a gal has got to see some friends, if just for a moment, if just for a hug before or after meeting to do the deal.

Balance.

Towards that end.

I also cooked for the week.

In fact, I cooked extra, so I have food for every day at work and for the three days of classes on the weekend.

I am a little concerned with the weekend, although, not from a scholarly perspective, that will arise I am sure, but I feel pretty confident with the work I have done so far.

No.

My concern is the weather.

It’s forecasted to rain.

All freaking weekend.

I don’t want to be on my scooter in the rain.

I don’t want to be on my bicycle either, but I feel like it’s a safer option, than riding the scooter in the rain.

At least I’m used to riding in the rain.

I could take MUNI too.

I just loathe the thought of having to get up earlier to accommodate MUNI schedules.

Ah.

I don’t have to worry about it now.

Worrying about weather days before class is not helpful.

Hell, worrying about anything days in advance, in any area of my life, is not helpful.

Granted, I do like to be prepared, so it’s in the brain pan, but it’ll work out.

I am sure.

I will get to and from class however I am supposed to and it will be just fine.

I am just fine.

Actually.

I am.

I had a spot of sadness last night, after I had done my nightly check in, and it caught me a little off guard, but once it rained on my face for awhile, it passed and I was able to sleep super well.

I treated myself last night and watched a romantic indie comedy.

I don’t often watch romantic movies.

But I was feeling it and after all the reading I had done yesterday I figured something light hearted and sweet and romantic was needed.

It was.

And.

I cried.

I got caught up in the mythos of the movie, which is just what it is, myth, fantasy, supposition, story telling, romantic notions and trivialities.

I got swept up.

That’s ok.

I tell myself.

I don’t think I am the only person who has ever watched a romantic movie to get a little cathartic relief.

I think I was just surprised by the feeling of sadness that overcame me.

But.

As I have been practicing, having the feeling and letting it go is helpful and I forgot until I was writing that I was sad last night before bed.

I was also held and warm and safe and loved and my heart was full and I knew it was all ok, too.

Faith.

And self-knowledge.

Changing ideas about who I am.

Perspective.

Constant, serious, ethical, self-care.

Love.

Practicing these principles in all my affairs.

I’ll get there.

Where ever there is.

The journey is the point.

Anyway.

The lesson is to let go and keep moving.

There is more to see and love and be.

Go forth.

Sweet psychology student.

Practice.

Not perfection.

That is the modus operandi.

Show up and the rest will follow.

It always does.

Always.

 

It Took Almost

January 8, 2016

Eleven years.

But holy shit.

It happened.

I finally felt comfortable in the room.

There’s a room I found myself in about eleven years and 10 days ago.

I was profoundly uncomfortable.

I am not sure how the hell I stayed the whole hour.

I did, though.

And I kept coming back.

Even when my ass was falling off.

Even when I looked like hell.

Even when my best friend was dying in a hospital just down the road.

I laughed there.

I smoked a lot of cigarettes there, at least for a few months, the smoking ceased, the going there did not.

I felt not enough too often to recount.

I felt less then just about as often.

I was never a cool kid, I was never going to be a cool kid.

I don’t know that I was a cool kid tonight.

I’m too old to be a cool kid, but I tell you what, I felt fine.

I felt good.

I felt even and at peace and nothing was lacking or wrong in my life.

I was finally comfortable in that folding chair, underneath those ceiling fans.

I saw men I had crushes on.

Men who I had asked out on dates and was told no, thanks, or worse.

No response at all.

I saw a man  I had made out with the night the Giants won the last world series.

I saw women I hadn’t seen in years.

I got hugs and gave hugs.

I felt good to be the exact person I am today, strong, happy, secure, loved.

I laughed with a friend on the way home.

And marveled at my life.

I mean, I truly marveled.

I have come so far, so fucking far, it constantly blows my mind and when I think, “think,” things are not going my way or it could, should, or ought to be better, when I think, “I’ll be happy when…”

I know I am on the wrong track, off on the wrong foot, going in the wrong direction on the one way street.

I was riding my bicycle earlier today, heading into work, swooping along the paths on the Pan Handle and I was thinking about New York.

I was thinking about Paris.

I was thinking about what I want.

I was thinking about me.

I was telling God how it should be.

I was telling God how I wanted it to go down next.

Then I laughed the fuck out loud.

Who the hell was I to tell God what to do?

Who was I to complain that I wasn’t being loved the way that I thought I should be?

Hahahahaha.

Oh my God.

What a fool I am.

I made the decision right then and there to love and not be loved, as it says in this nice little prayer I read every morning, that I say, that I try to carry out the door with me into the wide world.

Although.

As it can be seen as evidenced above, I only made it a few miles down the road before I was telling God specifically what kind of love I deserved.

“Carmen, I love you, will you marry me,” my little five year old charge said to me tonight.

“You’re a little young for me,” I said and smiled.

“What if I was 51?” He said, dipping his buttered toast into a bowl of warm broccoli soup I had made.

“Can I have another bowl of soup?” He asked, mopping up the last of the bowl with the crust of bread.

“Of course,” I said and swooped in, picking up his bowl, kissing his head, ruffling the hair there.

“Well?  What if I was 51?” He asked me again as I set a fresh bowl of soup in front of him.

I already had the next piece of bread toasting in the oven.

“51 might be a little too old,” I said with a smile, and sipped my tea.

“What if I was your age!” He said, bright eyed, then, he smiled, “and a little taller?”

I laughed out loud.

“Why then of course! Yes, love, I would marry you.”

“Will we have kids?”

Oh my.

Ha.

I am loved.

Over and above and beyond what I deserve.

Love.

Everywhere.

A friend texting me to give me a lift home.

A friend texting to ask me out to a movie.

A hug.

A kiss.

A three year old, “Carmen, CARMEN, CARMEN!”

“Yes?”

“I love you!” Sotto voce.

Oh, my darling, I love you too.

I have so much love.

I prayed from my knees the other night.

(every night, every morning)

By my bedside and thanked my God for knowing the depth of love that I have gotten to know.

To find beauty and grace and above, gratitude, for a difficult situation and to realize that the experience has lead me to a greater depth of love, to know more love, to have a bigger bandwidth for love, that it does not matter that it was hard to go through, look at the amount of love I got to know by going through it.

Astounding.

And I don’t know if I loved as hard as I could today.

(I love pretty hard)

And I don’t know if I could have done it better or differently.

I feel like I did a pretty good job.

And I don’t know if I would have done any of it any other way but the way that I did it today.

I do know this.

I feel good.

I feel centered.

I feel enough.

I am loved.

I am lovable.

I am worthy of love.

The hubris of having humility is that I cannot say I have humility, I don’t, let’s be real, but I can recognize that I did not feel less than tonight.

I felt equal.

I felt apart of.

I felt like I belonged and.

Best of all.

I didn’t feel like I needed to change to make anyone happy.

I was.

I am.

Perfectly content.

To be the exact version of Carmen I am today.

I rock.

Let’s be frank.

Haha.

Nah.

I am not a rock star.

But I am a star in my own little way, a bit of old light from a source so far outside myself that I cannot fathom the power of it, a reflection of a love so big and grand and in-exhaustive that I know, without a doubt, that I am just exactly where I am supposed to be.

Raw.

Vulnerable.

Open.

And when I think I need it some other way, I just get to remind myself.

“Love, rather than be loved.”

Love.

Love.

Just.

Love.

Second Wind

December 13, 2015

And I have no idea where it came from.

Maybe the adrenalin of riding my scooter through the Mission and over the hills towards the Outer Sunset on a Saturday night.

Oh.

Yeah.

With the left over drunken idiots of what used to actually be a cool San Francisco treat.

Santa Con.

Look drunk hipster santa with drunk elf in fishnets, get the fuck out of the way, I just came from Psychoanalytic class and I am not interested in either your psycho-sexual dramas or your apparent desire to play out the Death Drive in jumping out into the street looking for your Uber, Lyft, taxi or other vehicle of conveyance.

Get ye the fuck back to the North Pole or wherever the fuck in the Marina you came from.

Please.

And.

Thank you.

It could be that I just had a second wind because I had to take the time to run to the grocery store, I slightly miscalculated my food for the week, no biggie, but without something to toss in my oatmeal in the morning, apple, etc, I was going to be a very sad lady.

So.

I dashed in and out of the SafeWay in the Castro, which was happily devoid of trashed Santa’s and drunk elves, although definitely equipped with a plethora of cranky trolls working the registers.

I got what I needed and jumped back on the scooter and actually made it inside my house by 9p.m.

I have no idea how the hell that happened.

I left class at 8p.m.

Happy to make such a quick trip and feeling adrenalin from the mad grocery dash and the defensive driving back home, I used it and threw in a load of laundry, packed my lunch for tomorrow, balanced my check book, opened and hung up a few Christmas cards and threw myself in the shower.

I am still jacked up.

I didn’t have any coffee past 10:30 a.m.

Although I could have used one and I thought about it.

Nope.

This is pure herbal tea and adrenalin.

I suppose I am just getting the end of the semester, almost there, keep pushing through, last day of classes is tomorrow, shot of energy.

I do hope that it wears off before I crawl into bed.

The last two nights I did not sleep well.

And I thought after Friday’s full day of classes and little sleep I would totally have gotten some.

But I was up.

I had a bit on my mind.

Blocking someone’s number out of my phone and the ramifications of how and when to set some boundaries really came up for me.

I didn’t really write about it last night as I was caught up in the spell of Christmas magic, but yeah, I have had some uncomfortable interactions with a person and through my own fault, I fully concede I let them step all over my boundaries, a situation that I could have rectified by choosing to not engage with the person, well.

It blew up.

Not, I suppose as bad as it could.

But for a minute there with the text messages coming in rapid fire and the tone and quantity of them.

I got a little spooked.

I have a history of having dealt with some trauma around a romantic relationship that turned sour and the man who I had dated and lived with for five years, after a rough break up, started to stalk me.

That continued for two years.

I will not say this person was stalking me.

I just felt that old fear come up.

And I realized that I was the person who invited it into my home.

I was mad at myself.

But then.

After the awareness.

Fast acceptance.

I don’t believe I have moved so fast from awareness of a defect of character to acceptance.

It rolled right through me.

I forgave myself and realized that I had failed to listen to my gut in regards to the person a long time ago and that listening to my gut is important.

I have been listening.

I hear rumblings, but don’t know what they are associated with and then I start to have feelings and those feelings I ignore.

So.

No more ignoring.

And then some action.

I did some inventory.

I erased the messages.

Actually I was busy erasing them as they came in.

I probably erased ten or twelve of them in rapid succession, then I realized I needed to call in the troops and I got on the phone and talked with someone, checked in, got my suggestions.

Got off the phone.

Deleted more messages that had come in during the conversation.

Then gave myself a big pause.

Took a big breath.

Prayed.

And organized my self.

Picked up my phone.

Scripted a very simple text.

Word for word what had been suggested to me.

Sent it out.

Blocked the contact in my phone.

I had already taken the person off my facecrack friends list earlier in the day.

Perhaps an early warning sign that something was on the horizon.

I will likely see this person next week.

We swim in the same waters, so to speak.

And I am ok with that.

I don’t believe there will be face to face confrontation, in fact, had the person called, I would have taken it, but the mass texting was too freaky and after one very pointed, passive aggressive, manipulative text, I had no inclination to speak with the person on the phone.

That option went right out the window.

I learned some powerful things and I acknowledged deep in myself that I knew this was coming.

Which may have been why I let it go as long as it did.

Not healthy.

Not for me, not for the other person.

However, I am not, will not, beat myself up for the experience.

In my own limited way, I was trying to be of service.

And the other person, well, I believe, too, was trying to do the best that could be done.

That’s what I believe.

That at the bottom of it all.

We are good people.

Communication sometimes goes astray.

And sometimes I need to have space from a person.

That is ok.

I get to be grateful for the time and the growth experience.

And I hope to rest well soon.

One more day of classes, and I found out my day will end a little early, 3:30p.m. instead of 4p.m., a nice gift for the last day of classes.

Almost there.

One final presentation project and two papers to go.

And.

Like that.

My first semester of graduate school.

I am utterly amazed.

And still unfortunately.

Wide awake.

Oh well.

So it goes.

At least I have a Christmas tree to keep me warm and bright.

And dreams of Paris soon to come.

Did you think I forgot?

Ha.

Almost There!

December 10, 2015

I said to her tonight and gave her a big hug.

She looked a little glassy eyed with sleep deprivation.

She, the woman with whom I was commiserating, is a third year graduate school student at the same school I am in.

This is her last push.

She finishes this weekend and she will have her Master’s degree.

Granted we are in different programs.

And different years.

But the feelings were the same.

Come on you can do it!

I actually got a little sick to my stomach when she described what she had to do to finish with her program.

Then I thought.

Not my program, my program may be very different when I get to my third year.

Oh.

And yeah, haha, I’m still in my first and I’m doing ok.

In fact.

I am doing fucking awesome!

I got back my fourth reflection paper grade from my Human Development class.

Here are some of the comments:

Amazing and brave. It is so life-affirming to read your journey.

Beautifully descriptive narrative imagery, Carmen.

Grade: A

Great essay!

There was more, but, um, haha, no need to toot my own horn.

Besides.

What I am more thrilled about is that I am off the hook for writing the third optional paper.

Unless I fall flat on my fucking face in class with my final presentation project, I will get an “A” in the course.

Small happy dance of joy.

And back to the blog.

The other thing, that I just acknowledged in a phone call with my person, I have done the work.

I mean.

For the first time all semester, I am completely up on all my reading.

I did it all.

I finished it all.

I read it all.

ALL OF IT.

I am that person.

I am even re-reading a little of it before class on Friday because I can and I will need to have a better grasp of my Psychoanalytic readings to be able to write the last paper for the class.

Oh.

I liked typing that.

The last paper for the class.

I have tentative dinner plans to celebrate with a friend on Sunday.

I’m going to give my friend the biggest hug ever.

Ever, ever?

Ever.

I remember the warmth of congratulations given to me when he heard about my getting into the program and also when I shared about my scholarship news.

I feel like I have had this friend in my pocket, like an ace up my sleeve, helping me, giving me rides to class, grabbing me coffees before class, helping me grocery shop, so many things.

Probably too many to recount here.

But I wrote them all out this morning in my journal, my morning pages, my morning routine.

It just poured out, this river of gratitude for the gifts I have received.

There are so many.

Countless.

I have also received unexpected gifts from the school program.

The first being the simple acknowledgement that I belong where I am, that I am on the right path, even if I’m not certain exactly where it is going, that I am talented and smart and capable and can do the work.

The next is the surprising friendships I have struck up with women who I never would have met otherwise, and who I cannot imagine moving forward without in my life.

So very graced.

So blessed.

I have school “girl” friends!

I mean.

Heh.

I almost just blushed with that.

I am so pleased.

Happy.

Loved.

I feel loved.

I know that sounds silly, but I have new girl friends and that makes my heart happy and I know that I will have them always in my life.

Maybe not under the exact same circumstances, we won’t always be in school, but I know, they will always be in my life.

Such gifts.

A wealth.

An abundance.

Then.

I was thinking of a group of girlfriends.

Sort of my first group of solid out in the real world girl friends.

How they got out and ahead and I somehow faltered and fell behind.

It’s not much of a secret what happened.

I fell down into the selfish hell hole of my addiction and the narrow parameters of living a lie coupled with a complete inability to be a friend to anyone, not myself, not another human being, in any true manner of the word, and of course, my friends left me.

Out paced me.

Out grew me.

Said, hey, “I love you, but I can’t be a part of this anymore.”

“I’m done.”

That hurt.

But it hurt in a way that it sunk home.

Of course, it didn’t stop me.

I still kept on.

Not for much longer though.

Of those three girlfriends I am in touch with just one.

Nurse.

Public Relations maven.

Lawyer.

Nanny.

Which one of these is not like the other?

I realize today, as I was getting ready for work and did a quick scroll on facecrack and saw one of those ladies post a life event (we are still all connected on social media) that I have finally, almost, not quite, but kind of getting there, catching up to them.

They all have Masters degrees, law degrees, nursing degrees.

They are smart capable women, all with children and husbands and careers.

I’m the weirdo.

Single, tattooed, artist, Burning Man attendee, bicycle commuting, pink hair, sometimes in a faux hawk or studded with fake flowers, odd duck who lives in San Francisco.

Or I can flip it and say I am a powerful, realized, self-acknowledged, hard working, graduate school student, who works full time as a professional nanny (a job that I would not have gotten without my undergrad degree, fyi, not for the money I’m making as a nanny), who has overcome what on the outside looked like insurmountable poverty, neglect, trauma, physical abuse, abandonment, stress, PTSD, clinical depression, rape, incest, being stalked–to getting sober, writing a book, no not just a book, but three manuscripts about those aforementioned “misadventures,” being published in Paris, blogging for five plus years, being a world traveler, having love and friends and community in abundance around me.

I am more actualized and realized than I ever was.

More authentically me.

So.

It took me a little longer to get here.

“I wish you a long, slow recovery,” she said wisely.

What the hell does that mean?  I thought, but hugged her back.

I know now.

And I am so utterly.

Completely.

Inexhaustibly.

Grateful.

Beyond words.

So grateful.

I ache with it.

Ache.

But in a very good way.

The kind of way that tells me I am exactly where I am supposed to be.

Happy.

Joyous.

Free.


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