Posts Tagged ‘student’

Reading The Fine Print

January 9, 2018

I just went through the handbook for my Master’s program with a fine tooth comb.

The one thing that I have found challenging in my program is the apparent lack of information as well as the over abundance of information.

I feel like there is so much information that just is not applicable to my experience or the learning and then there’s information that I really need, but it’s buried on page 41 of the 50 page handbook.

I’m glad I found it though.

I have gotten a mixed bag of mis-information from fellows in my cohort as well as interns in my group supervision about how many hours I need to have accrued in practicum to graduate.

I need 225 to graduate.

Of those hours I must have 150 direct client hours–sessions with my clients, not phone sessions or e-mails or paperwork or progress work–face to face sessions.

I had thought that I needed 250 direct hours and I was beginning to get a little nervous.

I should not have any problems getting the hours.

Or so I thought.

I have eight clients that I see on a weekly basis.

But.

They cancel.

Or.

They no-show.

And it’s rare, I’m seeing quite clearly now as I just got home early because a client no-showed, that I actually see all eight clients during the week.

So when I was thinking I needed 250 direct face to face hours by May, I started to get concerned.

I won’t make it, it won’t happen, how is that possible?

How is it possible that I am heading into my third semester of practicum and don’t have enough hours?

How?

As of right now I have 240 hours.

But only 130 of them are direct face to face hours.

I felt flummoxed and upset and annoyed and then I begin to berate myself.

Why did I post that stupid thing about graduating in May and filling out my graduation application?

I’m not going to graduate!

Whoa.

Slow down there.

I don’t have enough information.

I realized that I cannot just go on the information drifting about through the hallways at school or in the office where I do my group supervision.

I have to take responsibility and find out that myself.

So I went to the academics page on the school’s website, signed into my account, found my program.

And.

Voila!

There on page 46 of the 49 page hand book:

Students must complete a minimum of 225 hours [at least 150 direct client contact hours plus 75 Client-Centered Advocacy (CCA) hours] while enrolled in practicum prior to graduation.

Sweet Jesus.

I am fucking fine.

I am only twenty hours shy of having the direct client contact hours.

As for client centered advocacy I don’t have nearly that much, I have six hours.

But I do know this much, it doesn’t matter if I don’t get all the client centered advocacy hours, if I have more direct client hours, I can count those towards graduation.

Ultimately it is the face to face sessions that mean the most and I have to acquire the majority of my hours there.

And I also recognize that I could be actively going after more CCA hours as well.

Client centered advocacy could be doing research on a client and their family lineage, it could be watching a movie about alcoholics, it could be reading a CAMFT (California Assoication of Marriage Family Therapists) magazine or a psychology magazine.

Today I actually had some down time at work, and while the baby napped I read a number of articles in a psychology magazine on workaholism and chuckled to myself, multi-tasking, working and also accruing hours, sounds like I’m the workaholic in this instance.

But I’m happy I did the reading as I had that no-show and I was able to mark down another hour.

I think that I will try to acquire two hours of CCA per week as I move forward, more if I can.

I can also read outside articles, books, and go to seminars and do trainings.

But just knowing that I actually have enough moving forward is a bit of a relief.

I was getting a little worried.

I also realize that I am probably going to have to let one client go with whom I have been doing pre-dominantly phone sessions.

I am not allowed to count Telemedicine through my school.

I can towards my license, but not towards my graduation needs.

I want to be safe and make sure that I’m not squandering my time.

I am excited and relieved to have reckoned all of that out and grateful for a really good talk with my solo supervisor today.

Who happened to be quite intrigued with my dissertation idea and to my surprise, completely supports me going for the PhD.

I told him I had actually had hesitation to even mention that I was going to apply for the PhD because I thought he might disapprove of my decision.

But he did not.

And it was amazing to sit and talk to him about my ideas and to also get some really interesting feedback from him and some areas where I will be honing in more.

I made a call to the Dean of the Transformative department after I got out of supervision.

I wasn’t able to talk to her, she was stuck in a budget meeting, but I left a message and I will follow-up tomorrow.

My advisor got back to me and said he would support my efforts and write me a letter of recommendation and we made an appointment to meet the first weekend of classes.

It’s all falling together.

Even when my brain tells me it’s not.

It really is.

So nice.

So.

Very.

Very.

Very.

Nice.

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What The Fuck

April 13, 2017

Are you doing to yourself, kid?

I literally had a Cher from Moonstruck, “SNAP OUT OF IT” moment this morning.

I got up with my alarm, grateful to see that the rain was clearing and that I would be able to ride my scooter to work.

Ah work, back to work, it’s been a minute, is it time to go back already?

Yes, dear, glad you enjoyed your days off, time to hit it again.

I made a nice breakfast and had some coffee and I was just about to settle into some writing when I had this great idea to check the school website and find out about summer classes.

Like which ones I should register for, what I need to have to get to the next step, you know, keep progressing.

Note to self, as it was brought up by a dear friend in the cohort, “you’re planning on taking summer school and practicum?!”

Um.

I was.

Sort of.

I mean.

I had no idea what compelled me, fear, oh, yeah, fear, I forgot, hahahaha, to go online today and blow almost all my morning writing time on trying to figure it out.

Figure it out never works for me, and yet, there I was neck-deep into the figuring it out.

Getting more and more over my head, and without even realizing it, panicked.

Why did I take the last two days off, I should have been dealing with this, I don’t know what to do, I’m fucked, the system is fucked, why hasn’t my advisor responded to my e-mail, why is the registrar so stupid, what is wrong with the….

Whoa girl.

Back the fuck up.

I sent a friend a text asking about the summer courses, she’s always so on top of it, and I got a lot of information back, none of which I was able to assimilate or understand and when I read one of the texts I just about lost it, there was too much, it was too much, I can’t do this.

Do what?

Self-inflicted idiocy, getting myself all worked up over nothing.

I could feel the fear rising in my body and getting stuck at the top of my chest and trying to ride up into my throat.

Very grateful I caught it when I did.

Stop.

Slow down.

Breathe.

Look around.

You are sober, you’re dressed in nice clothes, they are clean, you just ate breakfast, you have coffee, lunch is packed, coffee for work is packed, your hair is done, you have makeup on, the scooter is ready to go.

You are fine.

Breathe.

I started to ignore texts that were still incoming from a number of places.

I don’t have to engage if I don’t have the space.

Then I looked at the time.

Shit.

I had wasted 45 minutes of my precious morning routine on this fuckery.

I hopped up, did the dishes, took out the trash, organized my things, turned my phone to silent and sat and wrote.

Rent is paid.

My phone bill is paid.

I am ok.

I paid for my scooter insurance for another six months.

I have paid for my Healthy SF for the next three months.

I am fine.

I am enough.

It is enough.

I have my practicum placement.

I have a therapist.

I have supervisors.

I don’t need to know what electives I could take for summer.

I can take them in the fucking fall.

If I wasn’t doing the internship I would have the god damn summer off from school.

So relax.

You are ok.

All I had to do, all I have to do, I told myself, was show up to work alive and on time, stay sober and show up tonight at my commitment.

Oh.

And maybe put some gas in the scooter.

I could do that.

When I got to work I was relaxed, had calmed down, and was able to respond to a message from a friend who is going to Paris in May with his wife and two boys about some friends I have in Paris and where he could meet them.

It was nice to stop, get out of my head, and be of service to someone else.

And Paris.

Oh yeah.

That.

You’re going to Paris, doll, in a few weeks, you have a place to stay, you will see friends, there are museums to go to, streets to walk, Metro’s to ride, postcards to write.

I was pretty back to myself and in my body by the time I got to work, which was good, it was full tilt boogie, the kids had missed me, and truth be told, I them, and I got tackled upon my entrance.

“CARMEN! I missed you! I love you! I’m so glad you’re here!”

“Tag! You’re it!”

And it was on.

It was on all day.

The cleaners came.

I made dinner.

I made dessert.

I washed laundry, folded laundry, put laundry away.

I played soccer, Mother May I, tag, hide and seek, good dog/bad dog (the four-year olds made up game), cops and robbers.

And last but not least.

I played lots of snuggles and thank God.

I got to play stay at the house and watch the four-year old nap while the older boy went to the dentist.

I played Debussy’s Clair de Lune and folded towels and baby blankets.

I returned the texts and messages I had to return and I chatted with a few friends.

I also acknowledged that I did accomplish some stuff today in regards to school, even if it wasn’t what I had set out to do, I did discover that the school had posted all the weekend dates for the next Fall and Spring semesters.

That was surreal.

To go through the next year and plug-in those dates into my calendar, ending with the last weekend in May 2018, which will be my last weekend before graduating.

Not that I even know when the ceremony will be.

But I will be there.

Summer school or not, the work will get done.

I also finally managed to set up the forwarding on my school e-mail, they just switched over to a new system, so that all school e-mails are sent to my Gmail account.

That was a big deal.

Just taking all the little, teeny tiny steps to get there.

And breathing.

Pausing.

Responding.

Not reacting.

When the fear sets in.

I see you fear, you just want me to be to be aware of all the pitfalls that might befall me.

Thing is though.

Fear is the pitfall.

Fear is the trap.

Faith is my answer.

And it was my spiritual principle.

God has not brought me this far to drop my on my ass.

I am taken care of.

I am.

Seriously.

I Don’t Read Your Blog

August 8, 2016

“I want to know you through getting to know you, I want to have first experiences with you.”

I was so utterly and honestly compelled to write about this that I can’t even explain how important that is to me.

This is something I hear too much.

“Oh, I know, I read your blog.”

Well.

You don’t know.

I mean.

You do.

There’s a lot I put out here, there’s a lot of me, there’s this now, this experience of sitting in a tiny cabin with two other women in my school cohort.

Oh.

And tiny aside.

The triple is not a bigger room.

It’s the same size as the other rooms except it has a bunk bed in addition to the regular size bed.

Basically they shoved two beds into the space of one and called it a triple.

I was dismayed when I first saw the room and felt a bit claustrophobic and how the fuck am I going to handle this and where am I going to go to have some privacy?

And.

Fuck.

Like that.

Intimacy.

Into me you see.

I don’t want you to see me, I want you to see a perfectly crafted me, the woman who gets up two and half hours before she has to go anywhere so that I eat breakfast and pray and read and have my morning me time.

But.

Also the woman who paints her face and does her hair and sticks glitter everywhere.

I mean.

That perfumed lady is special and  is me.

But she’s not all me and I don’t want you to see me without the glitz and the glam, to see me in old faded yoga pants and a sleep shirt that has pink skulls and flowers on it.

I don’t sleep in pajamas, I sleep in the nude, so a week of being in a cabin room and having to wear pajamas to bed.

Oh my god.

Dying.

Yet.

I know, in a big way, in a small way, in all ways that it is important for me to let people in, to let myself be seen, warts and all, saggy upper arms and all, sans the glitter, or the lipgloss, with my hair messy and my heart out on my sleeve.

Literally and figuratively.

And there’s not a lot my room mates aren’t going to see of me in the next few days.

Eight to be exact.

Seven nights.

Eight days.

All of me just hanging out.

So to hear that my dear friend wants to actually experience me, to get to know me, to love me, in person, up front in real rather than behind the scenes, or the screen, person to person.

Of course.

I’m not exactly present at the moment, typing away on my little laptop, digesting my day, letting go, moving forward, not knowing exactly what this next week is going to be like, or the next few weeks for that matter.

I’ll be living out of suitcases and bags and traveling with work and you now, that thing in the desert.

Don’t put nothing in unless you feel it.”

Yes.

Nina Simone.

Break it down baby.

I feel like dancing.

I feel like being in a club.

I feel like round back chairs and oval wood tables.

I feel like smokey hazy air and warm breath and sultry nights and slow dancing.

Fantasy.

But a nice fantasy to have in my heart.

My little burning heart all lit up with vulnerability and lights, carnival lights the fairground, the tilt-a-whirl, the up and down of the carousel horse, the golden bridle a shine of paint faded from sticky cotton candy hands and the brass ring.

Right there.

It is all so right there for me right now.

I can’t touch it.

But it is all right there.

Just there.

I am not exactly on the other side of the window, not exactly a wallflower on the wall, but not quite there, not quite on the dance floor yet.

I can feel it in my body, this urge to break out in dance, to move to surrender to that urge to just go.

To go where?

I don’t quite know yet.

Perhaps it’s a metaphor, a place that’s not a place, a coming back around to.

The deer, a doe,  head up and alert in the shadow of the tree.

The fawn a tender outline against the bright light flittering though the green and brown edges leaves of the old growth oak trees.

An outline of senses and thoughts and emotions.

A swirl of thought and love.

I am glad my friend doesn’t read my blog.

I am also glad that you do.

I miss you too my friend.

When the press of the stars is heavy in the sky, heaving with the sentient knowledge of god and the abundant nature of the celestial, the movement of the spheres a song that I catch faint and gossamer in the shell of my ear.

Poetry cut from the green hearts of apples.

The robin on the wire in the garden.

The moon a sail, a sloop, a causeway of honey on the midnight blue cast of the horizon.

And I here.

In this little bed.

In this little room.

I think of you.

Starlight pressed in my bosom.

Isn’t it a pity, isn’t a shame, how we break each other’s hearts and cause each other pain.  How we take each other’s love, isn’t it a pity.”

The time is not my time.

The heart, though it longs, is just a reverent watcher.

The mind, rabid burns with a morbid chastity that I cannot witness.

The applicable beauty that surrounds both.

To bring them both together, to not bring my mind to heel, to not break my heart, except to break it open, to feel more love.

To give back to go forth.

To be naked before you.

I am not so good at that.

But.

Tonight.

I will try.

In this small moment.

I won’t explain myself.

I won’t say how much I want to cry.

I won’t say how much I want to laugh.

I want to cradle you in my bosom and bright your life my words.

Love.

Love.

Full.

Replete.

“The beauty that surrounds us and we don’t see it, isn’t it a pity.”

Please.

Hold my hand.

Walk the woods with me.

And see.

How beautiful.

So very beautiful.

You are to me.

 

 

 

 

So, So, So Close

May 15, 2016

I can taste it.

It tastes like Lacanian sherbert with Milly D. on top.

It sounds like Vagina Punk.

It swims in the electric blue seas of eros.

It is the Psych(e)dynamics paper.

And.

It is all I have left to do.

I have finished my Ethics and Family Law take home final and sent it in.

I have finished my last paper for Applied Spirituality and sent it in.

I sent in my huge 11 page paper with references on transference and countertransference last night.

I have one paper left.

ONE.

I can’t do it tonight.

Oh.

I suppose I could.

I probably could spit something out in an hour and a half of so.

I know what I want to write on, although I may change my mind, I already discussed it with the professor, Mildred Dubitzky, my punk rock, radical feminist, pro-Freudian, professor, and she gave me the thumbs up.

The only fly in the ointment is that two years ago another student wrote on the same topic and I’m a little loathe to write on something she has already read about.

So.

I may change my topic slightly, depending on my mood.

But, not tonight.

No.

Tonight, the rest of the night, is not for going out or being crazy or trying to get across the bridge and hit the party at NIMBY, although I got umpteen requests and questions regarding whether or not I was going to go.

I turned them all down and said, not today, Ethics final has to get done.

I’m actually pretty fucking proud of myself today.

I got a lot of stuff done.

I got up and went to yoga.

Showered, breakfasted, coffee’d, did some writing.

Hopped on the scooter went up to 7th and Irving and hit Tart to Tart for some heart to heart with my person and some discussion of amends.

Amazing that.

I don’t owe anyone any direct amends.

NO ONE.

Fuck yeah.

This shit works.

I, of course, will stay the course with the living amends that I have had outlined and really I am doing well with those and having fun, actually, who knew, amends could be fun.

Being light.

Letting myself have fun.

Even with all the school stuff hanging over me.

I have had my moments.

I also had a great hour of sitting with my fellows and hearing someone with a lot of time, a lot, 37 years, break it down.

So freaking grateful.

After that I treated myself to a little lunch and a new pair of silver hoop earrings.

Because this girl cannot get enough hoop earrings.

I will be buying some when I go to New York.

I always buy earrings when I travel.

I actually am wearing a pair of pink heart earrings that I got at a brocante (flea market) in Paris that was around Square D’Anvers, right before I left Paris three years ago this May.

I love wearing earrings that I have gotten as souvenirs, never fails to remind of the moment or the place where I got them.

I don’t spend a lot of money on them, typically no more than ten bucks or so and they are small and travel easily back with me from where ever I am.

I’ll be at 262 Taafe Place, fyi, in case you were wondering, in Brooklyn, in Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood, which is not as gentrified as Williamsburg.

Which means a little sketchy but good vintage shops and coffee.

As long as I have coffee I’ll be fine.

And I’m not afraid of rough neighborhoods and I won’t look like a tourist in New York and I’m not staying in a place that tourist typically stay.

Ironically it’s maybe a mile away from where I stayed the last time, my first time, in New York, so I have a pretty good feel for what the area is like.

Dirty, bodega, bodega, subway stop, ooh coffee shop with house roasted beans, vintage store, bodgea, bodega, etc, and hopefully, some good graffiti.

God I love me some graffiti.

I could just do a walking tour of the neighborhoods and take photos of graffiti.

I would pee my pants if I saw a Banksy.

A girl can dream.

I have not done a ton of research yet around my trip, I’m still rather in the throes of school.

But I also got my grocery shopping done for the week and my cooking.

I had to grocery shop today.

Tomorrow will be a shit show out here what with it being Bay to Breakers idiocy.

Drunks running around in costume.

Whee.

I’ll be too busy writing my paper to notice.

Or I’ll hang out in the back yard.

Or.

Ooh.

God, wouldn’t this be nice.

I get the paper done early.

I’m not going to make any promises.

But I should have it done by dinner time.

I really do believe that.

Most of my papers for the class I have gotten done under two hours.

Really what it comes down to is reviewing the reading and my notes and just sitting down to my computer and starting.

And now that I have the proper software to format my papers, thank you so much to my friend in cohort who turned me onto it (it format’s your paper automatically in APA so I don’t have to beat my head on the Purdue OWL or the Chicago format page), I won’t have to worry about references being wonky.

I really do think I’ll be done by dinner time.

What will I do to celebrate?

Run around the park naked?

Oh wait, every body else will be doing that tomorrow.

I’m going to New York, I am going to be celebrating there.

Although, you know, finishing my first year of grad school does deserve some instant recognition on the day I turn in my last paper for the year.

I’ll come up with something.

I’m clever.

Heh.

God damn.

I’m excited.

I’m almost there.

It’s been a crazy ass year.

So much has happened.

I have changed so much.

So fucking much.

“You have changed,” she said to me, across the table at Tart to Tart, “you really have, it’s amazing to see.”

I smiled.

I have changed.

I am in awe.

I am amazed.

I am in love with my life.

Fuck yeah.

I really am.

Yes.

The luckiest girl in the world.

 

The Count Down Begins

May 11, 2016

I was looking at my calendar and trying to figure out when my person and I could meet up again.

We had just had a really nice re-connecting after my lapse in being available over the past week with it being my last school weekend of classes.

I asked if we were going to go back to our regular schedule and that would have meant meeting up next Thursday.

Except.

HOLY SHIT.

Next Thursday I fly out to New York for some well deserved rest and relaxation and as much modern art as I can get my paws on.

The Whitney.

The Guggenheim.

The MOMA.

Walking the Highline.

Walking around Brooklyn.

Doing the deal, because it’s awesome fun to do that in other cities.

Sunshine on my face and spring/summer time dresses.

OMG.

I am almost there.

I still have so far yet to go though it feels ages away instead of just around the corner and maybe it’s time to unearth your carry on, except, well, I won’t because I know how to travel and I know how to pack.

I mean, come on, I went to Paris for six months with this same roll on luggage and my bicycle in a box, I can do New York packing for four days in a matter of minutes.

The packing will not be the issue.

It will be getting all my papers, posts, and final exams done.

I have no juice left in me today.

The affects of the weekend of school and two back to back slumber parties has me all tuckered out.

There wasn’t, um, heh, much sleep at my sleep over last night.

My.

Though.

There was fun.

And every once in a while I would catch myself walking around at work gob smacked and silly, with a grin splashed across my face.

I actually kept it pretty well together, all things considered.

The red eye from Trouble Coffee did not hurt, and it was fun to be in my neighborhood on a Tuesday and instead of doing my little morning routine, going out with my company and grabbing some coffee and then catching breakfast at the Sea Breeze Cafe up the street.

Totally felt like a tourist in my own hood.

It was awesome.

And.

Since I will be a tourist again soon, in a hood all the way across the country, I do need to take care of organizing my time.

Tomorrow I get up and do my morning routine and then I start sorting through my notes and my readings for the appropriate topics that I will be covering for my class The Clinical Relationship, wherein I will be writing a ten to twelve page paper on the topics of transference and countertransference in the dyads that I worked for the class–12 sessions, 12 pages.

I can do it.

I have done all the reading.

And I take great notes.

Ask any of my classmates.

I am a good little school girl.

I figure once I have my notes organized and the supporting reading references to back up my experience with theory the actual paper itself will take me about three hours to write.

Maybe four if I include working up the reference page and doing a couple run through edits.

I’ve got a half day Friday at work.

Thank God.

I have a doctors appointment at 4p.m.

I figure I’ll be out by 5p.m. back home in the hood before 6 p.m. and I’ll grab some Thai Cottage take out and start the writing.

Or.

Better yet.

Finish the writing.

Because I do actually plan on starting the paper on Thursday.

I, ahem, have another date tentatively scheduled for Friday and may well be, well, er, heh, occupied for the later part of the evening.

Happily so.

It will be my moment of celebrating having that paper written.

Saturday I’m pretty open, I’m assuming I’ll be a little sleep deprived for part of the day, but I will still be showing up to meet with my person as per our usual at Tart to Tart at 12:15p.m.

Then maybe a little nail spa action or something else, not sure what, don’t have to figure it out now.

There will be reviewing material for my Ethics class and prepping for the take home exam Saturday, who knows, maybe I knock it out and do it Saturday as well.

Sunday I’ve got a couple of ladies in the early part of the day and then my Psychodynamics paper if I still have any stuffing left in me.

If not.

A day of rest, an hour of doing the deal in the evening and I’ll knock out the last paper in the mornings before work next week.

I want to have it done by Wednesday.

No matter what.

I am not going to New York with a Psychodynamics paper on Lacanian theory still to do.

I am just not going to.

I want to be free and clear to travel and not have any papers.

I have one more big push.

I can do this.

I did it before going to Burning Man last year–what did I write, six papers?   Right after the 8 day long retreat, aka “bootcamp.”  And then I went to the event with a clear conscious and the ability to be fully present for the experience.

I did it before going to Paris at Christmas time as the first semester closed and wrote I think four big papers to finish out the coursework.

I will be able to do this last.

Especially since I am completely finished with all my readings.

Last semester I was still doing reading as the last weekend of classes came to a close and still had reading to do before being able to write those papers.

Plus.

And this is a big plus.

I really understand the material.

I had an “aha!” moment in Psychodynamics as the professor was giving her last lecture of the year on what I could write about and I scribbled down some ideas and approached the professor after class and got the thumbs up.

As for the big paper, again, just the showing up.

Just like everything else in my life.

Say yes.

Show up.

Watch the magic happen.

I am sure that I will feel some anxiety, I always work through a little as I prepare to write a paper, but having the promise of a date Friday night.

Well.

That helps.

Helps quite a lot.

I get to be a good school girl.

And.

Have fun.

Yes sir.

Let’s get this party started.

You Look Great!

April 11, 2016

Did you lose weight?

Just the weight of having made it through the school weekend.

It is a heavy weight to carry sometimes, and as my TA in The Clinical Relationship said to my group this afternoon as we were parting, “you did really hard work this weekend, I just want to acknowledge that.”

Thanks man.

It was big, big, big work.

And.

Ah.

Yes.

I am almost done with the work.

I still have a paper to write, a paper that the professor actually gave us some more time to address.

So.

If I don’t want to write it tomorrow at work, I don’t have to.

Although, it’s probably for the best to bring my laptop and my reader, my notes, and just kick it out and deal with it.

Sometimes more time does not actually help me in the process of writing.

Ooh.

Look.

I can procrastinate this a little longer.

Frankly.

Um.

No.

Get it done.

Then relax.

“God, I open my big mouth sometimes,” she said to me afterward, “I just blurted out what I was seeing,” she said with apology.

“It’s ok, it’s nice to hear, I don’t own a scale, so I actually couldn’t tell you if I had lost weight,” I replied.

“Your face, it just looks amazing, maybe it’s because your hair’s down, I don’t know that I have ever seen it down.”  She gazed at my face, puzzled, “it’s just, it’s beautiful, your face, you look so, so light.”

I smiled.

And I do feel light.

I was happy today at school.

I got up with a decent amount of sleep.

I had a great first class of the day.

I connected with my two favorite ladies in the cohort and made plans with both of them for future time to spend together.

Slumber party next school weekend!

That will be such a blast.

I also participated and felt really good with what I contributed to class.

And.

Ahem.

I got a text message from my Tuesday evening date asking how I was.

Lovely, sir.

I am just lovely.

He’s out of town, but shall be returning this week.

Perfect.

I’ll be well rested.

Ahem.

I may also have another date this week, I’m just playing it by ear and letting whatever happens happen and enjoy the fact that I don’t have to focus on any one man.

I am having fun, remember?

Yes.

Fun.

I am happy.

I am tired.

It was a long weekend.

But I feel good.

Really good.

I feel loved and blessed and held.

I have friends.

I have a home.

I have school.

I get to do these amazing things and have these deep, effective, moving, my God, how emotionally moving some of this is, experiences.

I got my last assignments for the final weekend of classes.

I got papers to write people.

But.

I also have time.

And there is reading.

And there is time.

There is abundance.

There is lightness.

And purpose and magic.

Music.

I’m listening to The Listener’s album again, “Wooden Heart.”

It is so good.

So good.

Oh, my clamoring heart.

I am such a fucking lucky girl.

I almost took a nap today after I got back from class, I was pretty darn wiped out, but I stayed awake, went over to Thai Cottage and got myself some pumpkin curry and brown rice, came back here and read for a while.

No.

I did not read for school!

So proud of allowing myself a nice forty-five minute chunk of leisure reading, , John Irving.

A book I started last summer.

Last fucking summer.

I started it in Sonoma, at the house in Glen Ellen where the family I work for rent a place for a few weeks and have their summer vacation in some weather that actually acts like summer.

I can’t remember the last time I started a book and didn’t finish it.

However.

I started that piece of literature on a study break from school work and then, well, I just went straight to Burning Man and then straight back to school and then straight back to work and repeat, well, take out the going to Burning Man part, but I have just been reading and writing and doing school.

I pulled it off the shelf nestled into my chaise lounge, sipped on a cup of tea and read.

It was delicious.

But I was getting too sleepy and almost nodded off.

Instead.

I put on some music and danced around and got my blood up.

Then.

OH.

I pumped up the tires on my dear, beloved, and not much ridden bicycle.

Yup.

I took the whip out for a ride.

It felt so good to be in the saddle, to be in my body, and not in my head, not thinking, not processing emotions, not in a therapy dyad with a new therapist learning how to do her deal practicing on my emotional playing field.

From the moment I wheeled her out of the garage, it was like I hadn’t been off her at all, but the truth is, I have.

It’s been a month?

After I go the parking permit for work, I’ve been taking my scooter and my bike, well, she’s gotten a little dusty.

My body did not forget the motions, my legs pistons, my hands light on the handle bars, the wind soft, caressing on my face, lifting the curls up off my neck, and I am one with the bicycle and flying down 46th Avenue.

Flying.

Floating.

Magic.

The sunset at Moraga and 46th, the smell of beach bonfire drifting upwards, the salt, the ocean, the light of the bouncing off the pearlescent clouds.

The joy in my heart.

That’s what the woman saw.

The joy in my heart writ large on my face.

I cannot tell what part or the work informs the whole the most, I just keep moving believing that it is all love, brightness, light.

Rapturous with love.

And.

Perhaps hallucinatory with needing to sleep.

But let me just stick to the love part.

That’s the best anyway.

Love me, my love.

As I love you.

The raven with the moon in its mouth.

The song on my sleeve.

The music of the spheres.

Here.

There.

Everywhere.

Love.

 

 

Way Past My Bed Time

August 15, 2015

I am so busted.

Up late on a school night.

But.

I had to do it.

There was a social event, a sort of talent show that the students put on and I was persuaded to do a piece and then I was persuaded to stay and hear a piece and the next thing I know it’s 11:30 a.m.

Fuck.

I have to be in bed in a half hour, I need to wash up, brush my teeth, contact a few folks.

And.

Oops.

Write my blog.

I don’t know that I am going to write a very long one, just a heads up, it’s been an extraordinary day, however, I have a lot of work still in front of me–two more days of classes and 9 hours tomorrow of T-Group.

Which is intensive group therapy training.

Eleven of us in a circle confronting each other and learning how to do transference and stay in the emotional middle of the boat and not get overwhelmed and also provide a mirror to the other students, to see, hear, and feel what is happening.

Suffice to say what is said in T-Group stays in T-Group.

Except that I am allowed to talk about my experience as long as I name no names and don’t talk about anything specific in relation to another member.

I have had plenty.

And I do mean.

Plenty.

Of working in  groups and listening and sharing experiences.

However.

I have never experienced people saying stuff back to me, confronting me, then sitting still and working through the conflict.

I had a lot of fight or flight come up.

And yes.

I did cry.

I just oozed tears all day long today.

I suspect I will again tomorrow.

Oh.

And I did it.

I asked for what I want.

I asked my employers to give me off August 27th and 28th so that I can go to Burning Man and do the early arrival thing with my people whom I am helping out.

I wrote a lot about it this morning, I read some things, I asked some stuff, I did that thing I do, I kneeled down, heck, I even asked for a sign.

And.

Yes.

I did get one.

Damn.

It was so obvious it was like I was being directly spoken to.

I opened up my morning reader, or at least one of them and the suggestion to do something uncomfortable just for the sake of practicing doing something uncomfortable was the topic.

Well.

Fuck me.

Ugh.

And yes!

And.

Ugh.

I figured I didn’t have to do anything right away and I also really wanted to have breakfast before contemplating asking for time off on short notice, though, it’s not too short, it’s close to two weeks in advance, and how I was going to ask for it.

I made the decision though to ask.

You know what they say about willingness without action, though, right?

Fantasy.

I forgot about it by the end of the day and was dropping off books and notebooks and grabbing other notebooks and going to the next thing when I realized, as I booted up my computer.

Oh.

I have not taken that action.

All the bravado of I’m going to ask for what I want had not gone completely out the window, but it was a challenge to gather up my momentum after such a full, overwhelming–but I did not die from my feelings, though I thought I might at one moment–and intense day of school work and therapeutic learning.

I sighed.

Am I going to do this or not?

I am.

I can ask.

They can say no.

So.

I sent out an e-mail and I asked off for the 27th and 28th.

It felt good to ask for what I want, this psychology stuff must be rubbing off.

Scary too.

But I am letting go of the results.

Fact is.

I’m going to Burning Man no matter what.

I have the 28th through the Labor Day weekend off from work and I am going.  I have a ticket, I have the early arrival pass.

I may have to negotiate a different ride if my the folks I am going with decided to hit the road before the 28th and that’s ok.

A ride will coalesce.

It always does.

In the mean time.

I am going to cut this brief.

I need to hop, skip, and jump to bed.

I am exhausted and I still have two full days of school to go.

Get thee to bed ladybug.

You got T-Group bright and early.

See you in class!

Well

August 10, 2015

It’s official.

I am a graduate student.

I have gone through the introduction, I have made it here, I did not turn around, although my ride jokingly did make the offer as we were headed onto the bridge.

“Last chance!” She said as we passed by the last of the San Francisco exits before the Golden Gate Bridge.

She was a total peach and saved my butt.

My original ride got a hold of me 45 minutes prior to needing to leave–not one, but two flat tires on his vehicle.

Fuck.

He was so remorseful about it and so wanting to help he offered me the option of calling an Uber and paying for it.

I happened to be working with someone when I got the text, so I had my phone off, and I wouldn’t have seen it, that text until after she left if it weren’t for the fact that we were trying to reconcile schedules for the next time we can meet.

My schedule, is um, ah, ahahahaha, a little full right now.

I picked up my phone to check my calendar and saw the text.

My heart stop beating and I just cringed.

Oh shit.

I told my ladybug that I was processing the text and I don’t know what exactly I said, maybe, probably, “oh fuck,” as I was reading it trying to discern in my head what was the next move, could I do Uber to Petaluma, what time would I get there, would there even be any cars available since Outside Lands was making a disaster of driving in my neighborhood.

“I’ll take you,” she piped up.

Oh my god.

Thank you!

And she did.

She left to go get her car and a cup of coffee for the road and I made a quick-lunch that I had prepared yesterday.

I had gotten up early, showered, did the trash and compost, watered the plants, checked in with the housemate to let her know I would be gone, ate some breakfast, drank a lot more coffee than I normally do, packed my bags and organized my books, notebooks, and readers.

I also packed up the two readers for the two classes I am NOT enrolled in and brought them with in hopes of being able to sell them–at cost not trying to make a profit off my fellow classmates here–when I arrived at the retreat.

I posted a quick e-mail to the class list server and I got two offers right away.

As of a half hour ago I was able to hand off the two readers and two books to a fellow in the other cohort who happens to be bunked in the same dorm building as I am.

Speaking of.

But not very loudly.

I either don’t have a room-mate or she hasn’t arrived yet.

I am so hoping that I don’t have a room-mate.

Please, please, please.

It would be such a gift to have the room to myself the entire time I am here.

I am a creature of habit and routine and there are certain practices I have, especially with my morning routine that I was loath to even think about sharing.

Which is funny.

I am going to graduate school to get my Masters in Psychology to be a clinician, to be a therapist, to allow others to hold their own space and be a witness to and a guide and to help facilitate that move to authenticity of self, but pray in front of a stranger?

Please.

No thank you.

The thing is.

I would have.

I am just grateful, mainly for the space to stretch out.

The room is tiny, the beds are twins, there is one desk, two wee closets and a couple of communal bathrooms down the hall.

One less person in the dormitory is fantastic.

One less person in this tiny space is phenomenal.

And I like my space, I like knowing I can come and go and not disturb or be disturbed by another person.

I almost asked for a private room originally, but I would have had to pay extra for it and well, folks, graduate school it ain’t cheap, so I said I would share a room to keep my costs down.

So pleased to be alone.

I don’t feel lonely.

I just like to have a little alone time at the end of the night or to be able to quietly read in between classes.

And.

I am not the only person who did not get all the reading in or the only person who did not know how to access certain syllabi and who had troubles with the online portals.

A lot of folks did and I am sure there are a handful of students who did get the readings all done, but it appears that the majority of us did not.

There has been a flurry of activity since we got out of the welcome and introductions and the first exercises, which were really quit fun, although challenging ( I ended up getting partnered with a woman from Paris and we spoke French and that was hella fun and unexpected.  She used to live near the tattoo shop that I got my jackalope done in the Marais!) and longer than I expected.

We were let go at 9:15 p.m. and I co-ordinate with a guy in the other cohort and he took my readers I won’t be using and then I helped another student get online and navigate to the paper that needs to be written tonight, so many people in my cohort had new clue about the paper, then I looked over the schedule for tomorrow and I realized, I have as much done as I can.

I could read more.

But my brain is frizzled and, well.

I wanted to write.

This will be my bastion.

This will be my safe space.

My little nook in the hills were I can go and dump my anxiety and fears and let it all go.

I am exactly where I am supposed to be and though I can see the road is long, arduous, full of reading and writing and vulnerability, the journey is so worth it.

Not the destination.

The journey.

This journey.

Just to get to where I am at this little pressed plywood desk in a dorm room up in the hills outside of Petaluma, California.

Oh, my dear, my darling girl, look how far you have come.

My heart is full.

Overwhelmed and joyful.

Scared?

Sure.

But that’s just the way I am hard-wired.

Faithful, though, in the process of walking through.

“Just smile and be yourself,” her message said in regards to the retreat, “you’ll be amazed at how well you do.”

And I am amazed.

Before I was halfway through.


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