Posts Tagged ‘Tart to Tart’

Made It

December 26, 2017

I had a sweet day.

It helped that I got out of my house, and yes, out of my head.

My head is not the nicest place to hang out.

I woke up to the screams of a young child, my upstairs neighbor’s kid, opening Christmas presents and the ferocious shredding of paper package wrapping.

Just before 8a.m.

Ah, so much for sleeping in.

I had a hard time going to sleep last night, I was pretty sad and lonesome and a wee bit on the morbid side of things.

I hadn’t gone that far into the dark side in a while.

I cried myself to sleep.

Which, you should know, I’m loathe to share, but I’m also not a very good liar, and I have no desire to become a better one, now that I think of it, it was just what happened, that’s all.

I did lots of praying and lots of just letting the sadness come.

Sadness happens, I had tried to put it off most of the day yesterday, the lonely and the sad, but it snuck in, as it will sometimes at the end of the day when I haven’t the energy to marshal it away any longer.

So I let it out.

It wasn’t a wallowing and it wasn’t weeping, it was just slow, slippery tears and a very tender heart, some lonesome thoughts and some tenderness.

Even though I woke up before I was planning on getting up, I woke up quite serene.

Sure, some residual sadness at the corners of my day, in the pockets of my room, but mostly just a soft melancholic slick sheen to the day, a sort of soft focus sad that was like mist and it lifted itself away the more I got into being a wake and getting myself dressed and fed and caffeinated.

A good writing session and a fast realization that I needed out of my house.

I got my package and card, last Christmas gift to give, for my friend whom I was going to see in the East Bay and I headed out the door.

It wasn’t as cold as it’s been the last few days and that felt nice.

I wished Merry Christmas to a neighbor and got into my car.

I drove up to the Inner Sunset and grabbed a nice parking spot on 7th and Irving and went and did the deal.

It was so good and I felt a lot better.

Afterward I called my friend and said hey, I’m out and about now, would it be ok if I came over early?

I didn’t want to be alone any more.

She was happy to have me over sooner, so I grabbed a cafe au lait from Tart to Tart and hit the road.

The traffic was light and I made quick time.

I was going 70 mph over the Bay Bridge and getting passed left and right.

It felt good to be on the road and going someplace, getting out-of-town, getting out of my head.

I listened to music, no more Christmas carols thank you, a mixed tape play list I really love and sang at the top of my lungs.

I reflected on all the lovely things I have in my life and all the gifts I have been given, the amazing relationships, the love, the passion I have in my life, and how grateful I am for this life I get to live.

I got to my friend’s place in San Leandro, and got the grand tour.

She’s really liking living there.

I couldn’t do it, but we all get to make the best choices we can for ourselves and though I miss my friend not living in San Francisco something awful bad, I understand why she’s where she is.

And I am super grateful I still get to make it here in this city.

We hung out at her house a bit, got caught up, exchanged presents, then went to the Piedmont theater in Oakland.

We saw Ladybird.

It was a sweet movie and the theater was pretty full.

It was nice to be surrounded by folks and sitting next to my friend.

It was nice to be in a movie theater, I don’t go out to the movies often.

We walked around the Piedmont neighborhood for a little while and found a Thai restaurant that was open and had a lovely late lunch.

By the time we left the sun was setting and I drove her home, we’d taken my car, it was fun to have a passenger, and then I turned around and got back on the freeway and headed home.

It was a quick drive back, a bit of traffic at the toll bridge, but for the most part, really quick.  I need to get myself a FasTrak for the car, although I don’t have plans to go over the bridge, I know I will and it’s so much faster to use the FasTrak lanes than have to wait to pay to get through.

And like that.

Done.

I just hopped over to the website and did the deal.

I will get the toll pass in the mail in the next week and I can just pop it in my glove box.

I don’t know when I’ll go over the bridge again but I will, I do know that.

Maybe not to San Leandro anytime soon, but I’ll be going over to Oakland for my sobriety anniversary on January 13th for a dance party I’m throwing with a friend.

I won’t be going before that, I think, despite having an invite to a New Years Eve party in the East Bay, I’m not feeling going over the bridge on New Years Eve, it’s just not my thing.

I will probably keep that weekend really low-key and not go out carousing.

Maybe a little road trip up the coast, but that’s all.

I am glad to be done driving for the day, I was out a lot.

I’m going to have a little dinner here in a minute and just chill out, maybe go to bed early and just call Christmas over.

I made it through, like I always do, and life will go on without pressures and holiday expectations, just life, just doing the next thing in front of me and being grateful to keep putting that next foot down on my little journey, despite not knowing where it’s going exactly.

I just know that I am going somewhere and I can trust that everything is happening just exactly as it is supposed to happen.

I have faith.

Everything is perfect.

In my imperfect world.

 

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Push Button Baby

August 1, 2017

I saw a couple on the side of the road as I zoomed down Lincoln Way frantically trying to kick over the starter on a vintage Vespa.

I chuckled to myself.

The old Vespas look so fucking cool.

I know.

I used to have one.

It was such a pretty girl.

But.

Man.

It was such a hassle to get it started or it would conk out on me out of the blue.

Like coming down Laguna Honda in the fog going 40 miles an hour.

I got tired of that really fast.

That.

And the freaking horrifying sprained ankle that I got when the kick starter jammed and I folded my ankle in half.

That was no fun.

Months, years really, of healing.

The doctor was shocked it wasn’t broken and then told me it was too bad it wasn’t since the sprain is slower to heal and how badly I had injured it I would be lucky if it was healed fully in a year and a half.

He was right.

It took that much time to heal.

Actually closer to two years, if I’m honest, I had to be really careful and there were times when I could feel it was still injured.

It put a bad taste in my mouth for every having something vintage like that again.

Truth too.

I wasn’t prepared for the amount of maintenance and well, it turned out it was a knock off Vespa, despite the registration issued from the DMV, it was a knock off Vietnam Vespa and no body in town would touch it to repair it.

So.

I got rid of it.

I had it recycled.

I got it off the road.

I wasn’t going to be responsible for someone else getting injured on it and when the mechanics at the shop told me all the issues with it I was shocked that I hadn’t hurt myself more on it, I could have easily crashed it out.

Granted.

There were some gleeful moments on it when someone would pull up to me on it at a light and chat with me about it, the scooter really was well done, no one had a clue it was fake.

Certainly not I.

I was a tiny bit bamboozled you could say.

Any way, that’s an old story and not the point.

The point is.

Thank fucking god for my scooter.

I live in the Outer Sunset.

I work in Glen Park.

My internship is in the Mission.

My school is in the SOMA.

I have supervision in Hayes Valley.

And.

Therapy in Noe Valley.

I have to get all over the city.

And the scooter is quick.

Of course, I do have some anxiety about what will happen when the fall comes and the rains that generally come with the fall.

I will either have to get used to wet weather riding or figure something else out.

I can ride in the rain.

I have done it.

I do not like it, but it’s doable.

I was talking to my friend yesterday as she was getting the last of her household packed up for travels back to France and she looked at me and said, “drive safe poulette (her term of endearment for me–sexy girl, although literal translation is chicken, I like to think of it as “chick” or chickadee), maybe it’s time you got a car.”

Yeah.

There’s that.

Aside from the fact that it would be handy to go to Burning Man.

Heh.

Still haven’t gotten a ride yet, still hedging my bets with a rental, but that too is beside the point.

I don’t know what exactly the point is.

I haven’t had a car for over a decade.

I got rid of mine two weeks after moving here in 2002.

Fuck.

Nearly fifteen years with no car.

Lots of bicycles.

And two scooters.

I do like my scooter and I do so appreciate getting around on it.

I just have time concerns now that I didn’t have before.

I mean.

My schedule has always been full, but then I added in graduate school and graduate school added in an internship and um, ha, since, I’m a therapist in training, I have to be on time for my clients.

I get done with work at 6p.m. and I have clients at 6:30 p.m. Mondays, Tuesday, Thursdays, and I have been assigned a new client to see on Fridays now at 6:30p.m.

My first child client!

Bring on the child and family hours!

Ahem.

I digress.

This whole blog is a digression.

Sometimes when I don’t want to write about what I want to write about, I can go off on tangents.

Shadrach.

Scooter accident.

Dead.

Today.

10 years.

I had a little contact with his mom today after she posted a photo of visiting his grave.

Add onto that saying goodbye yesterday to my darling French friend.

Great recipe for sadness.

I felt heavy with it this morning when I left my house to go meet with my supervisor.

I got to Hayes Valley early and had a fifteen minute window so I called my person and shared about it and he said, “you sound sad,” and there it was, the sad, the heaviness in me, it was sadness.

Tears welled up and spilled down my face.

Yup.

Sad.

So we made a plan to meet at a church in the Inner Sunset after I got out of supervision.

It was so good.

I got right with God.

Then we went for tea at Tart to Tart and had a good session.

We sent my friend from Paris a good-bye photo of the two of us having tea, my face a little wet with tears, and my person smiling to beat the band, ugh, not all selfies are sexy.

Ha.

Oh.

Sadness.

I had my cry though and things began to shift.

I came home, made a nice lunch and then did some school work.

Because.

It’s that time.

I have two syllabi posted up and I checked them out and ordered books for class.

I sighed and realized I was pretty burnt out with the emotions.

And I decided.

You know what?

Nap.

I need a nap.

And that’s what I did.

It was perfect.

I had a little rest then got up, prepped some food for dinner and I could feel the sad had moved out of my body.

I got my things together and hopped back on my scooter, went to my internship, dealt with progress notes and paperwork and then saw a client.

By the time my session ended I was feeling great.

So nice that.

Go.

Be of service.

Feel better.

I scooted home.

Zipped by the park, rode the curves of Lincoln Way, smelled the bonfires at Ocean Beach and though it was cold and a bit foggy, I felt lifted, carried, loved.

I miss you Shadrach.

But.

You would be pretty proud of me.

Ten years.

You think the grief would have gone out of my body, but sometimes it is still there and needs expressing.

I’m grateful I didn’t squash it.

I just had it.

And I’m grateful for the emotions.

I get to have them.

Feelings.

It means I am alive.

And after all the death I have been witness to.

Well.

That’s a fucking miracle.

So glad I still get to be around.

Happy.

Joyous.

Alive.

And.

Free.

Two Down

April 30, 2017

One to go.

I finished my Trauma paper today.

It was a big deal.

I am super happy and grateful it’s done and I’m also glad to let the material rest, it was challenging material, traumatic stuff you might say, and I am happy to let it be for a while.

I will still have to go back and dip back into the material as I will give a presentation of my paper in the class next weekend.

I can handle that, oh, I’m sure I will cry, it was a day for tears.

But also a day for laughter and much joy.

I just got back from a big dinner get together and fellowshipping and I am so awful glad I went, it was just the perfect break from homework and I got to be connected to people and see people and talk to people.

Like.

Real live people, not just social media interactions.

I also got asked out on a date!

I was not expecting that.

And yes.

I have a date for tomorrow.

That will definitely give me incentive to write my last paper.

I am also speaking at a spot at 6p.m.

I will have my paper done by 5:30 p.m.

That was the promise I made to myself.

So when I was asked I was actually able to say that I could go to dinner tomorrow night after my service commitment, because I already knew that I would have my last paper written by the time I went to cover the commitment at 6p.m.

And now I damn well better.

I don’t want to have a paper dangling over my head.

It’s interesting.

I could tell immediately that he was attracted to me and I was intrigued, and also a tiny bit cautious.

I don’t date guys in early recovery, sort of rule of thumb and sometimes when I meet a guy whom I haven’t seen around before I get cautious.

Turns out he’s from out-of-town.

But not so far from out-of-town that he’s untenable to date.

San Rafael.

That’s not too bad and actually it’s an easier bridge, the Golden Gate Bridge, for someone to navigate from to me as I’m so far in the Outer Sunset.

Just blocks from the beach.

The beach that I didn’t think I was going to get to go to and was feeling a little sad about that today when I walked out the door to yoga this morning.

It was glorious today.

When it’s warm in the Outer Sunset at 8:45 a.m. it’s going to be a nice day at the beach.

I was happy to get to yoga, so I had no thoughts about also trying to squeeze in beach time, I had the paper to write and I also had to meet a couple of ladies at Tart to Tart from noon until 2p.m.

I was glad to be out in the sun but had no beach expectations.

I got back to the house at 2:30 made some lunch, sat outside on the back patio and soaked up some rays and then sat down and cranked out my paper.

I was done by five p.m.

I started the writing at 3p.m.

Thank God for the time that I had this week at work, I had all the material ready and it was just a matter of following the guidelines for the paper and writing it.

I wrote an eight page, 2,300 word paper.

I was done by 5p.m.

It was still sunny and I didn’t have to be to the spot until 7p.m.

I decided to walk down to the beach and get some sand under my toes.

I threw on my flip-flops, grabbed a bottle of water and had a glorious 45 minutes of chill time, then walked up to Trouble Coffee and grabbed a treat cafe au lait.

I sat outside in the parklet and enjoyed the feeling of being done with my paper and knowing I was going to go see some friends tonight and hang out and go out to dinner.

I got the paper done, I got to go to the beach, and I got asked on a date.

Fucking not bad for a Saturday.

“Have fun, be flexible,” she admonished me.

This happens a lot recently when I meet with my person and she’s right, I can get buried in the doing and the going and the moving and the shaking and I can and do get isolated.

It felt so good to be with my people tonight.

And.

Yes.

Flirting with someone certainly did not hurt.

He actually asked for my number before going out to fellowship, so that made fellowship even more titillating.

I felt very alive.

I still do.

I am grateful that I get to do the work that is going to help me be a good therapist, but also have a full, well-rounded, happy life, is also a huge part of being a good therapist.

I get to model a good life, a life that I would advocate for my clients, I get to lead my own happy life, and being connected to others is a huge deal for me.

Grateful to get to balance it all out and rather awed that it worked out so well today.

Oh sure.

I had some anxiety.

I had some push back on sitting down and doing the work.

But.

I have my routine.

I said my prayers.

I did it anyway.

And two hours and eight pages later I was gleefully printing off my final paper for Trauma class.

It was an accomplishment.

I also couldn’t have done the work that fast if I hadn’t already done so much of the background work on the paper.

The same kind of work that I did for the paper that I will write tomorrow.

I have hella incentive now.

I’m up to yoga in the morning, back here, shower, breakfast, morning pages, then I’ll plunge in.

I hope to have four to five pages done by lunch time.

I’ll take a lunch break and then kick the rest of it out by 5p.m.

Just like today.

And I’ll celebrate by doing some service.

Going out to dinner.

And.

Making out after.

I can’t eat sugar, but that doesn’t mean a girl doesn’t like something sweet once in a while.

Heh.

Jazzed

April 29, 2017

Until I look at my financial aid account, motherfucker I have sent you my Master’s Promissory Note three times, why the fuck is it not updated, where is my award?

Jesus school get on the fucking ball.

Ok.

Rant done.

I am in a good place, actually, and I should have known better than to look at my financial aid account.

I noticed yesterday that the school was still waiting on my promissory note, so I forwarded them the confirmation e-mail from the FAFSA people, you know, those good folks in government, ahem, and still, today, this morning, and again tonight, the school is “saying” they have not received it.

Sigh.

At least I am not getting too distracted by the bullshit to not focus on the stuff that really needs to be done, like my papers.

Here it is.

The weekend.

And here it is.

The last big fucking push.

I have to write two papers in the next two days.

I spent my down time, my break time at work, listening to the interview I did for my Community Mental Health class and jotting down notes and flipping through a book and post-it noting things that I am going to write about.

Basically the same process as I took for my Trauma class, but with a little less work, as there was less material to go over.

Still work.

And.

I got it done.

I have a good idea about what I will write for the paper, lots of notes, lots notations, quotes from the interview, and a good idea of what it’s going to take to do the writing.

I am not looking forward to either paper, but I shall do both of them.

I also made sure and did a grocery run today in between work and doing the deal and I have no errands that need to be run or things that need to be bought.

I am all set for the weekend.

Tomorrow I’ll go to yoga in the morning, meet my person at Tart to Tart, meet another lady thereafter, do some reading, get right with God, inventory some shit, make the head stop running for a few minutes, than jam back out here and have a late lunch and launch into my Trauma paper.

I should be able to finish it before I head out to do that thing I do in church basements, then maybe, I’ll do a little fellowship, just so I don’t feel like I’m losing my mind from the school stuff.

Then Sunday will be a somewhat similar gig, yoga in the morning, then back here, breakfast, shower, do my own morning writing and then hit the Community Mental Health paper and crank it out.

I’ll roast a chicken, because Sunday roast chicken dinner is about the way to roll and I hope that I will be done by 5p.m.

5:30 p.m. at the latest.

I have a speaking thing at 6p.m. and I really would like to be done with the papers by the point that I get on my scooter to go to the Inner Sunset.

I’m not sure how it will all work, but it will and I will get the work done.

It’s all there in my head, it’s all there in the notes, in my books, I have it all there, I just have to compile it, write it, pull the pieces together and make it look sexy.

I can’t believe I am so close to the end of my second year.

One more weekend of classes.

I’ll be turning in all projects, I won’t have any papers or things due after the last weekend of classes, which is a first and I’m super grateful for that.

And two weeks from today.

Well, ah, yes, you know, I’ll be in Paris.

Two weeks.

I’m so close.

It feels further away than that and not really real at this point my brain is super focused on the work that is in front of me and all the words that have to march across the page and get my point across.

I am also, although I gripe about what’s the point of showing up for the last couple of my classes when all the assigned work has been turned in, looking forward to a chill weekend with my cohort, it should be pretty stress free for me, I’ll have all my papers done by Sunday and I can just show up for class and be chill.

I am going to hang out with my friends, go to lunches and dinners, I have one friend who is actually going to spend the night with me next Thursday.

Little slumber party.

We’ve done it one other time and its super fun to have a school friend to hang out with.

She’ll get into town late afternoon on Thursday and we’ll meet for dinner and then pop out here to my place, it will be good to have company and bitch about school.

Although, I do want to express my gratitude for doing what I am doing and that the school is doing the best it can too, sometimes it feels like I should be getting more support, or better this, that, or the other, but ultimately, I am getting a lot of what I need and I am excited to be this far into the program and to have met and gotten to know the quality and caliber of my cohort.

They are some damn good people.

I don’t think we’re going to save the world, but I do think we are going to make it a whole lot happier, sweeter, healthier, kinder place to reside.

I’m definitely a better person for the experience of going to this school and for learning what I have learned, I have learned so much, it boggles the mind.

That I have so much more yet to learn and experience is a constant leveling of my pride, a constant learning of humility and a constant surrender.

I hope I have soften some.

That I have let you in a little more, let down the walls a little, or at least directed you to the gate and showed you that though it may be latched, it’s not locked, and I’d like to, no, I’d love to, invite you.

Come in.

Sit down.

Relax.

Get cozy.

Let’s get to each other.

I bet we have a lot to talk about.

So much.

I can’t wait.

Just let me get through this weekend and I’ll be so down to have a cuppa with you.

I can’t think of anything I want more.

Night y’all.

I have to get some rest.

I have miles and miles to go.

I can almost see the light.

Almost.

There.

 

Sexy Got Her Homework On

March 27, 2017

And her yoga on.

But not her sex on.

Well.

Not true.

I took care of business after my second yoga class today.

Yes.

I said that, two yoga classes today.

I have never done that before.

It’s not that big a deal and at the same time, it sort of was.

I went to my normal 9 a.m. Sunday morning class and got a very good sweat on and proceeded to watch my entire day change in the span of a few text messages.

When I got back from my yoga class I got a cancellation then after I got out of my shower and was getting my breakfast ready, my coffee date cancelled.

So.

I sent a lover a message.

And.

Nope.

NO response.

That kind of day.

So.

I got to do extraordinary amounts of self-care.

Which was needed and much cleaning and house hold attending.

And.

Cooking and grocery shopping.

This next few weeks is going to be busy.

I will be working two weeks straight for the family, the dad will be leaving Thursday for a business trip out-of-town so I will be working next Saturday and Sunday.

It’s actually going to be three weeks of work and school before I have another weekend off.

It’s going to be intense.

So I’m grateful I had today all to myself.

I was good company.

I took some extra time this morning for my writing and I made myself the most delicious coconut/almond milk latte and decided to just let the day unfold and not worry about anything.

I knew I also had to get a paper written for my Trauma class, my step-father made it into a paper this go around, and do cooking and food prep.

But I didn’t force myself or stress.

I just took each moment as its own little exquisite experience.

I washed all my bedding and did two loads of laundry, even washed the rugs in the bathroom, and swept, vacuumed, washed, polished, and cleaned my whole house.

It looks so nice.

I also went grocery shopping for two weeks of food.

I will probably have to re-up on fresh fruit, but I have enough coffee, eggs, oatmeal, brown rice, almond milk, organic carrots, frozen blueberries, and prepared food to get me through the weeks to come.

I roasted a chicken today and I made jambalaya.

I froze the majority of it and canned the rest of the chicken soup I had leftover from last week.

I have meals for days and I feel happy to have dealt with it.

I didn’t leave the neighborhood.

Although I did take my scooter to the Safeway on Balboa to get my groceries.

I wasn’t going to take it further, I knew there was going to be one more episode of rain and sure enough, there was, but not before I had run all the errands I needed to do and the next week and a half looks like sunshine.

That is going to be super helpful, I have my first therapy session with my new therapist Tuesday before work and I have an appointment to see my advisor at school Thursday before work.

The before work, work begins.

In actuality, I realize, it began already last week, I have been doing things before work for the last couple of weeks since the last school weekend.

Which reminds me, I need to swing by the post office before work in the morning and pick up a package.

I think work is going to be pretty busy, not just with working next weekend, but also, its Spring Break for the kiddos, which means I won’t have reading time for school work.

I feel like I’m ok though, I have done a lot of the Couple’s Therapy reading already, finished all my Trauma reading and I wrote my Trauma paper today.

I had some push back on it.

I realize I have been having some feelings of, “over it,” move along, I’m tired of this stuff.

It can get exhausting looking at the trauma minefields in my life history and how I got through some seemingly unscathed, but the patterns of the things I did to survive stay with me, little bombs of shrapnel on my psyche that explode without warning and leave me tired on the side of the road picking the stuff out of the pockets of my emotions.

“I feel brutalized,” I was telling my person yesterday at Tart to Tart, that place has seen a lot of my tears, about an incident that happen last week and how I felt and why I was angry.

We did a lot of work around it and I got some very good suggestions and I took them, I’m still taking them, I will keep taking them as the days move forward.

I hadn’t realized how much I was carrying until I said out loud that I felt brutalized and that it reminded me, I later saw, of my step-father and my mom and some stuff that happened to me growing up.

All the things that happened growing up.

Glad I start therapy on Tuesday, Jesus fuck.

Of course, under the lens of my graduate school work, of course, a lot of stuff is going to come up, the pot just keeps getting stirred and things pop to the surface, so when I sat down to write my paper I realized just how much I didn’t want to write it and I let myself start out that way.

And.

Five pages and 1,562 words later.

I was finished.

In fact.

I finished it so fast that I realized I could go to the restorative yoga class tonight at my studio.

Yes, I had already practiced today, but the restorative is really meditative and relaxing and it’s not about getting a work out, it’s about being in your body and supporting different parts of it that don’t typically get support or rest.

It was just so what I needed.

I came home, lit some candles, checked my messages, saw nothing from anyone, and said, well, I’ll just take care of me and took care of me.

I am actually a little surprised that I had so much sexual energy today, I just finished my period yesterday, but as I am getting older I can tell that sometimes it comes out in different ways energetically.

I also had some fodder for fantasy running around my head that I just let myself have.

I could say it was counter transference from the work I did today, which is another entire blog and far to clinical for me to delve into here.

Or.

I could just say.

After getting flowers, a home cooked dinner, and a restorative yoga class I was just in a yummy, dreamy space.

And I let myself go there too.

Yes.

Thank you self-care Sunday.

You rocked.

Ready for the next weeks work.

Bring it on.

Carmen

March 5, 2017

That is an unusual name.

My driver said to me before dropping me off.

“Yes,” I replied, “I am lucky to have it.”

I am too.

I love my name and there are days I feel like I live up to it and there are days when it takes on its own persona, its own life and I’m a little like, hey, who the hell are you?

Sort of like my blog.

I am not all here, no, I’m not.

There are things I don’t write about and there are things I do write about.

Which is just how it is.

I have learned over the years of writing to keep the focus on me and I have a strong tendency to want to wrap up whatever I’m writing with something pithy, with some solution, with some sort of aha moment.

I had a sort of aha moment today where I just wanted to scoop my brain out of my head and throw it out into the rain.

I was struggling in yoga.

I just wasn’t feeling it, it was a substitute teacher and she had a different way of doing things, and different isn’t bad, though my head may try to tell me that it is, it’s just different, that’s all, and I can struggle getting someone else’s routine down.

I wasn’t doing a lot of compare and despair but I was a little and I felt sort of janky and jangly and out of my element and as I was lying in the final pose, corpse pose, yeah, that was definitely me after class today, dead, but alive, my brain hadn’t rested much, churning out the good time music and the chaos, I began to obsess about how I wasn’t doing enough yoga and that I had to figure out how to do more yoga.

All this while doing yoga.

BRAIN.

Please.

Can you stop.

Please.

You’re killing me smalls.

Seriously.

At least I was able to find the humor in it.

It was funny and so typical of what my head does, I had to laugh.

Especially when I shared it later today with my person.

We met at Tart to Tart, did some reading, I got a good check in, some suggestions and felt a lot better about my kookoo brain than I had before I walked in.

Then I met with another lady and felt better after that.

And I ended up skipping on getting my nails done and just headed home on the train.

Which was nice, facilitated having a phone call with a dear friend of mine that I have been out of touch with.

Which led to making plans to see said friend.

Super grateful for that.

And a slow day here at the house thereafter.

I did a tiny bit of grocery shopping at the co-op and did some preliminary scouting work on my mid-term paper that I have to write tomorrow for my Couples Therapy class.

But.

I was just not in a mood or place to do any homework.

I now what I have to do tomorrow and I’m going to get it done, but today, I just couldn’t muster the energy to do it.

My friend and I had talked about how lonely school can be and how hard it is to balance full-time work with full time school and full time recovery.

And it is.

It is a lot.

And I miss my friend.

And I miss socializing.

So when we talked I could see my calendar in my head and I double checked, and yes, there, a day where we can meet and hang out and catch up.

I also let myself off the hook to do anything super productive today, just to let myself have a chill day, especially after the trauma of going to the dentist last Saturday.

So.

I bought myself some flowers at the store and I did some art.

Just messed around with my colored pencils for a while, but it was nice, listening to jazz, John Coltrane, listening to the rain all outside, listening to the scratch of the pencil on the paper.

Soothing.

And when the time was time I ordered a car and headed out to 1100 Divisadero and hung out with an hour in a room with some fellows.

Then.

Yes.

I did it.

I fellowshipped.

I was uncomfortable, I always am at the beginning of it, then I got into it and I felt more connected and it was nice, I don’t always know how to act in social gatherings and I can still be really awkward, but I am working it out and better awkward with friends, burgeoning friends, than cozy and alone.

Not that there’s anything wrong with being alone.

But I can get alone too often.

And I need to be social, I am a social creature, I am a human with needs for connection.

I can just get in my way sometimes and get too caught up in trying to figure out when I can get to do more yoga.

Which is me trying to figure it out, trying to manipulate, trying to control and manage my life, which I have proven over and over and over to myself that I am not the best management team for myself.

Yet.

I still try.

My brain is a pushy little beast.

I have some great respect for that tenacity, but sometimes the tenaciousness of it is wearing.

And like I said, when I’m doing yoga while trying to figure out how to do more yoga I know that it is too meta for me and not in a good way.

I am in my will and when I’m there, well, I’m watching the horror show.

I got to practice changing the channel today and it was pretty damn good.

Reality.

It really is the best show in town.

Seriously.

 

Give It To Me!

March 3, 2017

I was just having a moment with my lip balm container.

I love it.

It’s the best that I have found since my favorite brand stopped making my lip balm about ten years ago.

It’s by Tokyo Milk.

And it is so good.

But damn it man, the packaging is so hard to open.

I was like.

My face is cracking, open up.

Ok.

Maybe not that dramatically.

But.

I can tell some things about me are changing.

My lips get chapped faster, my hands are dry (I mean, I’m a nanny, I do wash my hands a lot, especially when handling a new born, but still, I’m definetly getting the old lady hands, age spots and all), I have laugh lines around my eyes, even though I wear sunblock every day.

I’m getting older.

As though the gum disease and the having to wear bifocals, um, excuse me, let me get politically correct, my “progressives” glasses, weren’t enough, the grey hair at the roots of my crown, the aging, it is happening.

But.

I still wear them damn flowers in my hair and I still feel often oddly childish and silly and light-hearted, I may be getting older, but I still have a wonder about the world and a curiosity and a wish to see more things and have more experiences.

Once in a while my brain tries to launch an attack, oh my God, you’re 44, what’s next?

Death.

I suppose.

A cold, hard, lonely death, boohoo.

Can you hear the tiny violin playing.

It’s in concert with Jim Croce.

That’s not the way it feels.

I didn’t bother to watch that horror show though, today.

I just rather enjoyed the red rose in my hair and the lip gloss on my lips.

I had a nice day.

I even had a half hour by myself, sort of, my charge was napping, in which I was able to make a check in phone call with my person and confirm meeting with her on Saturday at Tart to Tart, look over some defects of character and get right with God.

And.

I got to sit outside on the back porch and enjoy the sun and a hot mug of tea.

It was pretty fucking spectacular.

Shit.

I even put my phone down for a while, got off the social media and just connected with the blue skies, the warm sun, the flowers blooming in the garden, the paper whites, narcissus, in a pot, the tiny buds of jasmine just turning pink, the whir and buzz of hummingbirds in the plum blossoms.

It was exquisite.

It is Spring and it is a little warmer.

Not a lot, but enough and yes, there’s more freaking rain this weekend, but the last couple of days the sunshine on my face makes all the wrinkles fine and acceptable, what am I going to do anyway, erase my life, rub away the laughs and the adventures and the experiences.

I like how I am, most of the time I’m in acceptance about my body, my health, my age, I’m pretty fucking lucky to have gotten to this age and have the health that I have.

Ridiculous the gratitude I have for that.

I have plans for these old bones, I’m not ready to roll over any time soon.

I was talking to my boss about going to Venice at some point and I think about all the places I write about in my morning pages.

I want to go to Burning Man.

Duh.

I have the time off but haven’t found out about the ticket yet.

I will be going to Paris, so that doesn’t count, I have already gotten the ticket and I have a place to stay.

All I have to do is show up with some money for food and museum entrances, and oh a couple of Claire Fontaine notebooks and maybe a tattoo and a flea market score or three, a souvenir or two from the Marais.

Paris is a done deal.

Other places I’m contemplating are Anchorage to see my dad, Portland to see my sister and Puerto Rico to see my roots, and because I have a friend that has contract work there, he’s invited me and I’m just waiting to find out when the family will be out and off to Europe for three weeks in July.

I don’t know what their dates are yet, so I’ve been holding off on getting any forward motion on buying a plane ticket.

I still have the voucher from this past Christmas too for an air plane ticket.

I am planning on using that for Puerto Rico and then buying a one way to Anchorage and doing three days there and then a one way to Portland, get a room in some hipster hotel and drink a lot of coffee and walk around and see what the scene is like, hang out with my sister, see what the deal is like.

I’m thinking one week in Puerto Rico, then one week split between Anchorage and Portland.

Then the third week the family is gone, just chill here in the city, do some yoga, hang out.

I get ahead of myself, but it is fun to contemplate.

Better travel plan contemplation then my brain trying to play some late night B movie horror show about being single and alone.

Frankly brain.

I’d rather watch Dirty Dancing again.

Go away.

I mean, for real.

I got better things to do.

Dear God help me see what you want me to see and help me to let go of what I can.

Thanks.

I mean it.

I need all the help I can get.

The weekend is nigh and I want to have fun.

Please show me the way.

I’m open to suggestions.

Bring it on.

I’m all ears.

Seriously.

 

Unexpected Free Time

February 25, 2017

Not a lot.

But.

Oh my God.

More than enough.

I got a text this morning from the mom saying, hey you worked such a long day yesterday, come in an hour late and we’ll probably let you go an hour early.

Grandma visit.

At first I was annoyed.

I had plans!

Then I was flustered.

Shit.

I could have made plans.

I could have snuck in a yoga class this morning.

Then.

I got over myself.

Get grateful you boob!

You just got two hours knocked off your work day, be happy.

I did some extra writing.

I made a cafe au lait and read another two articles in my Couples Therapy reader–in fact, I’m only two articles away from being completely done with all my reading for the next weekend of classes.

I am super psyched for that.

I took it leisurely getting ready for work and I had a nice shower and really, my hair was on point today, I had a hella good hair day.

And when I got into work I found out that since the grandma was going to be leaving on Monday she wanted to spend extra time with the kiddos and take them on a special trip to the toy store.

Grandma, toy store, extra time with the kiddos=getting off not one hour early, but two!

“Happy Friday,” the mom said, “if you can just fold up the rest of the laundry and take these things up to the dry cleaners, you can go early, I don’t think we’ll be back from the toy store before you would be leaving anyhow, you don’t need to futz around here and twiddle your thumbs.”

“Really?” I asked.

I mean.

Yes, please and thank you, but also really, I haven’t had this much leeway in my job in some time and I realize that although I loved the family I was working for a lot, those boys, oh those sweet boys, I was under a great deal more stress to constantly be doing something.

I had to put up a lot of boundaries around taking breaks and having down time, or time to eat my food.

Not so at this job.

They are just the bees knees.

And the mom and I had a very sweet talk today about the whole process and how happy they are to have me.

I mean.

Really happy.

And I am really happy to have them.

It feels like such a good fit.

Granted I know the honey moon period will pass, issues arise, conflicts happen, but over all, wow, wow, wow, just such a great job for me.

The gaggle of baby, mama, brother, sister, and grandma headed off to pillage the toy store and I happily futzed about the house making sure everything was in order and tidy and putting away the laundry.  I did a double, triple check on things, then headed out to Noe Valley to drop off some dry cleaning for them, and killing two birds with one stone, I also dropped off some mending I needed done on my two favorite cardigans.

Then I asked for direction.

Where to next?

I had a thought about running downtown to go shop at Gap, but realized that wasn’t necessary, I didn’t have to put myself through going downtown to use the coupon that I had.

In fact, right before starting to write this blog, I just went online and applied it at the online store, basically saving $70 on my order.

I got the same dress I am currently wearing, one of the causal interview dressed I bought, in a different color (mom made a really outstanding point to me today as the baby had a huge whoopsie down the back of her shirt, pants, and yes, all over the floor, that I should have a back up set of clothes for having at the house in case such a thing happens, hence another dress like the one I’ve got on) and a racer back maxi that I was thinking, oh, yes, Paris in Spring, with a pair of sandals.

So.

Instead of going downtown into the madness, I just took the roads up and over Twin Peaks and headed to the Inner Sunset.

A quick run to the bank.

Then.

A manicure.

It was really nice to do that.

Just sit back, read a trashy magazine and get my nails done.

Such a little pleasure.

Then I took myself out for some carnitas, because, carnitas, hello.

Afterward a nice cafe au lait, decaf thank you, and I made sure it was decaf, and some fellowship with a friend from the neighborhood before doing the deal.

It was good to catch up and it’s nice to know people in my neighborhood.

I am officially a Sunset person I think, it’s been three and a half years of living out here now, I think I can call myself a part of the Sunset for sure.

After getting right with God I hopped on the scooter and made the executive decision to do my grocery shopping for the weekend.

It may rain tomorrow, already put the cover on my scooter, and I just figured, get it out-of-the-way.

And like that.

I did.

I also paid rent today for March and signed up for two yoga classes this weekend.

Fuck.

It feels good to be on top of things.

Plus.

I touched base with my supervisor at my internship and we set up a time for me to come in and fill out all the paperwork and talk about next steps.

I’ll be doing that in March, after my next weekend of classes.

So, although, yes, I do have a full weekend, it’s not so full since I got some errands done unexpectedly and let myself skip out on needlessly going downtown to make myself crazy in the shopping district.

No thanks.

I’ll take a nice mellow night in and yoga in the morning instead.

I’ve got a meet up with a lady to do some reading and then my dentist appointment at 4p.m.

Fingers crossed.

It’s been awhile, but happy to be addressing it.

Then a small dinner party in Noe Valley with some ladies in my cohort and a T.A. from the summer session of classes at the beginning of the school year.

Feels like a nice way to start the weekend.

I’m ready.

Happy Friday!

Choices, Options, Decisions

January 28, 2017

Home.

It was just to come home.

And I was very much ok with the coming home.

In fact.

I danced around my home feeling pretty happy and complete.

I had a good day at work.

I had a great meeting of the minds after work.

I got asked out to dinner.

And this time I got the feeling it was more than for just fellowship.

I said yes.

I don’t know when we’re going to go, but I feel like we will be going soon.

He had a cold or we might have grabbed a bite tonight.

I decided to opt out of going to my friend’s birthday dinner.

I was already half way towards home and super hungry.

I just couldn’t fathom turning my scooter back around, going the other direction into Friday night end of the week cocktail traffic and doing a late sushi dinner.

I was too hungry.

I figured the best thing to do was ping my friend, extend my happy birthday wishes and head home to eat some tasty dinner here.

I just did and I am quite pleased.

I am also pleased as I have paid my rent for February and I bought myself a few things online from ModCloth for new interview clothes.

Why?

Because I’ll be interviewing soon.

How do I know that?

I got a response to my resume and cover letter this morning!

Hi Carmen!
Thank you so much for your resume and info. I recall meeting you at the practicum fair.
It does look like you might be a great match for our therapeutic community here. I’d like to invite you in for a casual interview.
Please let me know some days and time-frames that would work for you and we’ll schedule a casual interview.
Thanks! 
Whoa.
I had completely forgotten I had even applied.
Hahaha.
The e-mail this morning caught me off guard.
I was not looking for it, just checking my e-mail as I had breakfast and was enjoying some coffee, thinking about what I might me doing this weekend and my plans had changed when I discovered I had gotten my period.
Yeah.
TMI.
Fuck you.
But no, there will be no fucking me.
Canoodle session canceled.
Which I am alright with.
I realized after I had gotten this e-mail.
I am going to need to do some shopping for some interview clothes tomorrow!
Yippee!
I like clothes shopping when I’m in the mood and I have to say, I’m in the mood now.
Hehe.
Super excited.
And fingers crossed we will be doing the interview soon as I would really love to nail down my practicum site and not proceed forward with more open houses and more applications and more interviews.
I responded with times and days and fingers crossed I’ll hear back soon.
I also contacted the third year student in my program, he’s the person who recommended the place to me, and said, I got asked in for a casual interview, any suggestions?
He said, “just go in and be your fabulous self.”
Well fuck.
I can do that.
And though it will be casual, whatever that means, I do feel like I want to show up nicely dressed and coiffed.
Really what it comes down to is that I need a pair of nice flats.
I don’t have a single pair of flats.
Oh.
I have tennis shoes.
Converse and a pair of Saucony.
And I have my boots.
But I don’t see wearing rain boots.
Or.
My Burning Man boots.
Um no.
Then I have a couple of pairs of heels, but I don’t have the appropriate interview attire to go with them, they were bought for dresses which I feel are too dressy for the interview.
And I have plenty of wedges and platforms.
But walking into an interview in 4 inch Mary Jane black suede platforms might be just a bit too much fabulous.
I figure I need to hop over to Macy’s downtown and grab a pair of D’Orsay flats from Nine West, they carry my size and they’re not super expensive, plus they’re cute and I can wear them with other outfits.
Then maybe I pop into Banana Republic and grab a nice pair of slacks or a long skirt, a simple button down and maybe a blazer jacket.
Nothing too fancy, but clean, simple, pulled together.
The site is in the Mission and it’s a Community Therapy model, so I don’t think any one is going to be over concerned with my outfit, but I know that it’s better to come in looking tidy then roll up in jeans and Converse.
Even if I end up doing the practicum hours in jeans and Converse, which is a likelihood, I will feel better being well suited for the first get together.
I’m going to get up, go to a 9 a.m. yoga class.
Shower.
Breakfast.
Coffee.
Scooter up to 7th and Irving, meet my person at Tart to Tart at 12:15p.m.
Then another lady at 1:15p.m.
Lunch.
Then a manicure and some lunch.
After lunch I’ll head downtown and do the shopping.
Hopefully it won’t take too long and then I’ll head to the NOPA do the deal and maybe if I’m feeling it, hang out and do some fellowship, grab dinner at Brenda’s if folks are going out.
Sunday will be yoga, taxes, homework, cooking for the week, reading, write a paper.
And if I get it all done I will be taking the suggestion to go see a movie.
I may not though.
And I’ll be ok with that.
I did promise myself that since I wasn’t going out tonight to my friend’s birthday gig I would try to get out tomorrow and connect with people.
Keep myself from isolating and be in the stream of life.
Because I suspect I’ll be starting practicum soon and I want to have some fun to balance out all the school stuff.
And though there is more work to do.
I am excited.
I am happy I got a response to my resume.
And.
I’m happy I got asked out to dinner.
Yes.
Yes I am.

Gearing Up

January 7, 2017

For the weekend.

I got stuff to do people.

Places to go.

French friends to reconnect with.

Plans to make.

Plans that may be changing.

I may postpone my trip to Paris in May, my friend won’t be going back the time we had originally made plans on being there together, she’s made some suggestions and we are going to get together tomorrow in the afternoon and hash it out.

Oh.

I’m still going.

There is absolutely no doubt about that.

Just that the timing may be different, more toward late summer or fall.

The entire point of the trip was for us to spend time together, she’s from Paris and has spoken often and passionately about a Paris I have had glimpses of but not quite gotten to see.

She wants to show me and I am all in.

We just have to push it back a little bit.

Once we have figured that out I will look at making my other travel plans, Puerto Rico.

I may take a few days and go there in May, swap out the timing on the two trips.

There will be travel.

And tomorrow there will be much get about on the train.

I have parked my scooter and covered her up.

It’s going to rain.

And it’s going to rain a fucking lot.

For over a week.

Oh well.

Before the train I will be going to yoga, I haven’t been all week trying to navigate my new schedule with the new job, but I signed up for the 9 a.m. class tomorrow and I will squeeze in a class on Sunday as well and perhaps one on Thursday, help me get mellowed out before I have my first weekend of classes.

Yup.

That’s next weekend.

I got my second text-book in the mail today.

The stack of notebooks and text books begins to grow once again.

So this weekend will be getting as much stuff as I can done before next weekend’s first classes.

I will do the deal at Tart to Tart with my person tomorrow at noon.

Then a manicure.

Then lunch with my friend.

I’ll probably find a cafe to hole up in for a few hours and crank out some reading.

I’m not going to bother coming home after I do the deal and meet my friend for lunch.

I’m gong to be heading over to the East Bay to a speaking engagement and I figure once I’m out, I’ll be out all day and just get it all in.

Sunday I’m having a lady over to do some work and then I’ll cook for the week and work on my practicum applications.

Because that shit has to get done.

And after next weekend I will be in the doing homework mode.

I mean.

Fuck.

I already am.

I have reading assigned for all my classes.

But after next weekend’s round of classes I will also have the papers and the projects that inevitably follow a weekend of classes and I have to get my practicum stuff together.

So yeah.

I’m almost, not quite, but almost, grateful for the rainy days.

I will not be out running amok.

Not that I tend to anyway when I’m getting prepared for the school weekend.

But you know.

Easier to sit still when it’s rainy and cold.

I do wish that it passes quickly and that it clears by the weekend so that I can ride my scooter to school or even to a day or two of work.

It is just so much faster than the trains.

I finally figured out the fastest way to work today.

I found the magic through streets that get me from Diamond Heights to my spot in Glen Park.

It’s a lot of hills and it’s a little nerve-wracking, but I’m getting used to the commute and it is intriguing to be in a part of the city that I haven’t had much experience with.

It’s funny how a little change in my work location opens up an entirely new part of the city and all the things that I had no clue where there are there.

It’s fun to discover stuff.

And the new job continues to be quite lovely.

I am really going to like it, I am liking it more and more every day.

Even though today was a little hard.

It wasn’t hard because of my current job, it was hard because of my previous job.

I saw the boys today.

Oh, hello tears.

I am super grateful I didn’t cry at the school, but it took some enormous draw of strength to not do so.

I saw the little guy first when I went to pick up my current charges from school.

He was out running around, he and the little girl in the family are in the same class and I figured I would see him, but I had no idea how hard it would be.

Which, you know, is a gift, when someone affects me like that, when I have that kind of depth of feeling, I don’t have to run from it, it’s a gift, it means he meant something to me.

He still does.

He means so much.

I said his name.

He looked at me, and for a moment he didn’t recognize me.

Then.

“CARMEN!”

He flew across the playground and threw himself in my arms (pausing to cry, I’ll be with you in just a moment) and hugged me so hard.

So very hard.

“I missed you,” he said and shuddered and then clung to me even harder, “I missed you so much.”

“I missed you too sweet guy,” I said and squeezed him back.

I set him gently down and asked how his Christmas was and his first week back at school and then I took a few pictures of him with my little girl charge and there was another hug and then he raced off to the playground and that was that.

I hugged my new charge and we got her back pack and bag of stuff to take home and signed her out.

I saw the old mom.

We said “hi,” and she said, “did you see?”

I did.

I nodded.

She told me his older brother was coming out and very much wanted to see me as well.

Ugh.

Slight pause to clean off my glasses.

Tear splatters.

I girded myself for the emotions and took my little girl by her hand and asked her about her day and she showed me the drawing she had drawn for me and then I looked up.

And.

Oh.

God.

His face.

All the emotions dancing across his face.

Shyness, excitement, joy, sadness, he paused and looked at me.

I smiled.

He smiled back.

Then he grinned.

Then he ran to me.

I caught him and lifted him up and hugged him and smelled his sweet neck and tried very hard, very, very, very hard, to not cry.

Saved that all for right now.

Ha.

“I missed you Carmen,” he whispered into my ear, “it’s been two weeks, it’s been too long, when are you coming back?”

“Oh bunny,” I said, and set him down, then I knelt down next to him.

“I missed you too,” I said and brushed his hair from his face and touched his soft cheek, how pale he looked, how sad and sweet and sincere.

“When are you coming back?” He asked me again.

I didn’t get a chance to say anything, the mom came and scooped him up, “we got to go ____________”

“I have to get them to the dentist,” she said, “sorry to rush off!”

“No worries, it was wonderful to see them, have a great weekend,” I said and smiled.

He looked at me, ugh, that look, then walked away with his mom.

I signed out my other charge and gave him a big hug.

“Guess what?!” I said and shook the sads out of my coat sleeves.

“What?” He asked very solemn.

“ICE CREAM,” his sister yelled, “ice cream, ice cream, ice cream, we’re going to go get ice cream.”

And we did and it was jolly fun and it helped soothe the ache in my chest to be with them and giggle and laugh and taste, them, not me, the different flavors at BiRite Creamery, and then sit and watch them devour their cones and then say, hey, let me get a coffee and guess what else, we got time for the park before we catch the train.

It was a good day.

A little sad.

A lot tender.

But a good day.

And I’m grateful for all the feelings.

“It must be hard,” my new mom said to me, when I mentioned that I saw the boys.

“For them, but also for you,” she said.

She’s an insightful person.

We get along quite well, I have to say.

“It was, but it was also good to see them,” I said, I might have been trying to gloss it over a tiny bit to keep myself together as I got my stuff to leave for the weekend.

“You must feel pretty tender, it might be harder than if you had just had a complete end with them,” she added.

“Maybe,” I said, looking at her deep blue-green sea glass eyes.

“But I’ll be ok, and I am so grateful to have made the transition to be with you,” I smiled, “thank you and please let me know how I can help next week, I’m very happy to be here.”

“Mom!” The little girl came running, “come eat dinner.”

Saved by the dinner time bell.

I got another hug from the little girl and a blown kiss from the boy and big, hearty, heart-felt thank you’s from the parents.

It was a good week.

I am glad.

My tears have dried.

And I am glad for both the expression of the emotion and that I can hold a vast amount of love and joy and emotions all at the same time.

I can love and miss the boys.

And.

I can be excited and happy for the new job.

And grateful for all of it.

All the feels.

All the things.

All the love.

Yes, love.

All the love.

It is so very, very good.

Even when it hurts.

Even then.

Seriously.


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