Friday, October 31, 2008

The Quest for a New and Hopefully Improved Apartment

You never realize exactly how much you love your apartment until a new landlord decides to evict you and all your neighbors with 30 days notice. An eviction that puts all of us at odds looking for the same two bedrooms in the same neighborhood. An eviction that comes right as the rains should reach a torential time in the season, all of my assignments in my crazy classes peak and just before the Holidays. Oh I'm sorry, we wanted to come up for Thanksgiving but instead we'll be moving. Maybe we can grab a fast-food Turkey sandwich. Maybe the 24 Hour House of Pancake & Steaks will serve up a holiday special.

So last night the hunt began. I drove by the many apartments I found on craigslist. I found the perfect one - sans the $200 rent increase - which makes it the, no way on earth despite it's awesomeness, apartment. I found one that looks like an unstable MC Escher painting and one that in the picture has an awesome spiral staircase but is on an incredibly busy street. There was a basement, no natural light cheap apartment but a questionable "Inn" (motel) right next store and the area is just at about the point where Portland turns into Felony Flats, land of the Prostitutes and drug runs. Yes, I am a snob.

See when I sit at my desk in the morning I look out at a pretty little unkempt yard with birds, squirrels and the kittens that unsuccessfully hunt them. I can walk to 3 different coffe shops within 6 blocks. When I go to my car I walk through the crunchy fall leaves of a beautifully tree-lined street. Of course there is the mold growing do to poor ventilation (?) in my apartment, the fact that it is freezing cold and that the bathtub has a gaping hole above it - but the rent is cheap, location awesome, trees pretty and did I mention I can look out a giant window and read or write at my desk?

Also I have to sale my beloved dresser. I love this 250lb 6 foot long dresser. But poor Kyle has moved this dresser for me 3x already and this would make 4. Seriously I love this dresser but it has to go, especially if I get a 2 story apartment. Or if I don't get an apartment at all.

I am whining I realize.

Well, back to work for reals this time!!

What day IS it?

I imagine I slept maybe 4 hours - most of those were restless and involved waking up in fear of over-sleeping. But here I am 1 hour into work and only 2 clients to spend the day with. I will get them up for medication and imagine they'll be back to sleep until at least 10. I'll read in the living room in hopes of an earlier riser. Not a bad plan for the day. However I don't really want to read for school - I want to read my chic-lit book. It's much more fun. It does not, however, require a paper written summarizing it on Monday evening.

If it did, it would go something like this:
In the vein of favored romantic comedies of the past, Carole Matthews, "Bare Necessity," is humorous, heart breaking and involves an uncanny circle of mistaken love and identity. Hilarious in the way that only British books can be Matthews provides fascinating and wildly entertaining characters. When teacher to children of the stars, Emily Miller, shows up in a naughty santa picture on the internet, posted by her long time boyfriend all hell breaks loose. Emily is stranded, living with her friend, Cara, a new age mistress journalist who accidentally aids in the publication of this story with photos of Emily posted all over the news. Thestory takes over popular media and Emily ends up lost, single and seeking a new life, love and potentially a new career. This madcap story keeps the reader interested and excited about where these characters will arrive next and how much power of the universe it will take to get them there.

See a way easier and funner read than, The Developing Mind: How relationships and the Brain Interact To Share Who We Are. Truely fascinating but reading it requires an intact brain. An intact brain tends to require sleep.

Back to work.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

To sleep perchance to dream . . .

I am only concerned about the dreams in the sense of the need for REM. What I really want is to be able to close my eyes and not be completely awake. Sometimes I lay there only to realize that not only am I awake but my eyes are wide open and staring at the ceiling. It's weird, that would seem that I am sleeping with my eyes open but it's something else.

I remain jealous of those who can sleep. I have been taking Valerian root this week but because I have to be up at 5:15 instead of 8:30 like usual I thought just taking my lorazepam and going to bed at 9:30 would be enough. Silly me. If I take the other stuff (Lunesta for example) I always risk over sleeping or having that medicated hang over.

I am tired and I think have managed to give myself these stomach pains from stress. Stressing myself into pain - I am a clever girl. :)

I also have developed I-Don't-Wanna-Go-To-Work sickness. It's the cold and flu that I've been fighting and have technically (sans that cold periodically) won. But lo and behold when do I feel it? When I know I have to wake up early and go to a job I don't exactly love.

But what should I be saying to myself: I liked it the last time, it is a well paying part time gig that is interesting and great for my experience. It helps me define what I belong doing. Or something in proper english.

I had a friend who used to tell me: Tell yourself you love it. Lie to yourself enough and eventually even you'll believe it.

Here goes:
I want to go to work.
I want to wake up at 5am.
I love work.
It is fun not boring.
I want to move.
I love packing - it is a chance to minimize my belongings.
I want to do all 11+ projects I have in the next 3 (2.5?)weeks.
I love the challenge.

So I'm GOING TO THE MATTRESSES! Literally and figuratively.


The Beautiful Messiness of Faith: Integration

The Beautiful Messiness of Faith: Integration

Distraction Retraction

I mispoke.

It is a distraction from my homework. But the two reasons I wanted the internet at home:

1. To write to my friends and family because I miss them
2. For school work

It is the bad side of my distractibility that is the problem. The one where I might as well be a kitten and I will just follow shiny things. At least the computer doesn't run around the apartment, I can put it away and get some work done. :)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Yes He Can

Can one person make a difference in this world? The other night someone said that they didn't believe that it ultimately mattered who became president - because who ever it was they would not be able to fix things - we have to fix things, they said. And they stressed that one man could not change things. I did not speak up.

So I will speak up here. One man can change the world. The famous Ghandi quote rings true here: Be the change you want to see in the world.

Obama is being that change - and he inspires me, and so many to be that too.

I just watched the 30 minute "ad" that he had made which came out tonight. Like the first time I heard him give a speech, I was left silent and with tears in my eyes. Tears of hope for a future that I do think my great grandparents believed in. When they came from Bristol, Oklahoma to Bakersfield, CA during the Dust Bowl it was with the hope for a better future.

My grandmother, with not a high school diploma, worked hard every day of her life and was so proud when my sister went to college - the FIRST in our family to actually go and graduate. She saw that there was hope, that hard work can pay off. My grandmother owned her own home, drove a good car and did what I imagine her mother wanted her to do, lived a strong life and provided for her children.

I believe in this country, I believe in its people (okay, most of them) and I believe in Barack Obama and Joe Biden. His platform hasn't changed, his motto hasn't changed, the only thing that will change is the country.

I know everyone has their opinions, but this is mine. We are lucky to have this man, this team. We are blessed to have someone who has scruples, goodness and brilliance - and also I believe humility and a sincere grasp on the importance of humanity, on the need for greater humanity, integrity and for honor to be returned to the White House and to this country.

When my friend said no one president has ever made a difference I thought, but that is not true. He said the only thing JFK did was become a martyr, he died before he could do anything. I couldn't refute him, because I don't know much about JFK and I was too disappointed in myself for not spekaing up to begin with! But he was wrong about so many other presidents he didn't say anything about FDR or LBJ, or Jimmy Carter or even the bad things that one president could do, like Reagan's impact on the mental health care system in America. One man can start the domino effect for good or bad.

I am going with Good.

John McCain is a good man, I don't mean to make disparaging comments on him personally - I am not saying he is a bad man, I am saying he is the wrong choice. He and his running mate will not help heal the country - the will help make things worse. It doesn't matter that they have done good things in their pasts (or not done them) what matters is their potential for serving the future. And they don't have what is needed to serve the future well.

Barack Obama is the right man. God Bless us with him as president and sooth the craziness of the violent and hateful people who are against him.

This is a chance for healing. A chance to actually fix things not continue to put bandages on gaping wounds.

Okay, I think I have gotten the point across.

I am humbled by Barack Obama and I am voting for him as our next President.

Internet = Distraction = Reflection

So . . . I have not had the internet at home for 4 months and I don't have an office job and am only at school when I have classes - so waking up to an in home internet connection has seriously distracted me. I got caught up on some emails, I changed (or tried to but it is weird now) my music on myspace . . . I did lots of non-homework things. And then I started my homework . . . but 2 pages in here I am at my laptop again. See it wasn't far away because I am listening to Bach on Pandora Radio. Bach helps me study.

I will get better. I have to get ready and leave for a couple of hours but upon my return . . . there will be only studying. Why? Because it is not optional. :)

On to other matters. I have been working on centering my self a bit more - seeking some calm. I get riled up fairly easily, though less than in the past. Lately I have not guarded my tongue like I am trying and have often spoken and felt awkward after. I am not reading my companions well before I speak. Maybe it feels worse than it is but I think it feels worse because it goes against that which I am trying to do. I am trying to LISTEN. Listen to the words, the tones, the unspoken.

In part I am trying to do what I will start doing professionally in just a matter of months. So I am NOT therapizing my friends but I am thinking about who I want to be as a clinician and as a better person in this life. And part of that is being present in other people's stories.

Also I am aware of how my strong opinions or tendency to take others statements as either personal or inflamatory isn't helping anyone. Even if it is personal - well it's their choice to throw something at me, I can catch it, duck or get hit. If I catch it I can respond or let go. If I get hit, I'll get reactive or hurt or even bitter. If I duck I have let them throw into the world what they want and not let it be mine. Own what is yours, not theirs.

Also I am aware of my current fortunate situation. Sometimes I start to panic about things like school work, the economy, the presidential election and subsequent dangers to the world, and about HOW MUCH IN DEBT I am becoming (a truely staggering number that will take my lifetime or more to pay off). Other's I think of how homesick I am and how many friendships I have lost in this distance and in my letting go of them (through neglect or meanness) and for my few friendships - some being tenuous or situational - here. But in the day to day (which is what I want to be thinking about) I am blessed and the little things can bring the joy.

I have been hearing the stories of friends and family lately - there is so much pain going on. I can't really disclose much but I have a colleague whose life has turned to, well, shambles. I cannot figure how to be any help or support. I don't know who can. I have other friends and family experiencing fearful situations with loved ones and loss. I hurt for and with them and hope for healing and grace in their lives.

I am not happy because I am not in a painful place, I am thankful that right now I am where I am. Life cycles this and that way, I know that. I am gifted with a time to reflect, pray and hope for my friends and family. To take responsibility for my part in things and support others, even if it is a silent presence.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

john's posting (10/28/2008)

In the words of (one of) my birthday twin(s)...

"The first step in any addiction recovery is acceptance that you have a problem.

Every night for the past two weeks, I have gone home and freebased honey...sometimes with peanut butter, many times without. I can't get enough. It started with the cheap stuff - Sue Bee, often considered a gateway. Then it's on to the coffee blossom stuff I brought back from Kauai. Late this week I moved on to the serious stuff - Tupelo.

I don't know if this addiction will ruin my life, but it certainly is out of control."

I lied

I went home. I think that the TV has magical healing powers, but only when you are in its presence. So I curled up on the couch and watched Northern Exposure - which is JUST like being in Human Growth & Development since my professor did show us a clip from it and say that there MUST have been a psychologist/therapist on set and in the writing room for that show.

Then I ate chicken noodle soup - the condenced kind that I love. And Butter Crackers!! (Club)

And then I took NyQuill and slept for like 13 hours.

I feel better. Not 100% but I figure I should tell myself it is 100% and then magically it will be!!

What's that about the power of positive thinking? Especially in someone like me who is WAY TOO mind over matter.

Back to try to sleep!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Why Am I at School?

I have a fever.
I am sick.
I got soup, but the smell of food is miserable.

Why am I not going home?
1. Tonight will be a good lecture
2. She will explain the big project due in 2 weeks

Why should I go home?
1. The flu is really contageous (contagious?)
2. I feel sick
3. I am sick


Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Graduation Spring 2010

Well it looks like I can graduate in a year and a half! This is really exciting - but also scary. I have SO much to figure out for the "how to" make this happen. But I really want it to be then and not dragged out. Well part of me wants to drag it out but that is just the part of me that is afraid. Now, the problem? It will be really hard financially. And it will be absolutely crazy. I need to try to find an internship that will start in July as well.

Anyhow, I think this is the best plan. I think. I think. I think.

Other news on that, I am trying to decide what name to put on my diploma. I am thinking my professional name should be my maiden name. Ideally I will eventually change my name again (i.e., get married and take his name) but I can have a different one professionally. I am crazy and paranoid I realize but I don't want it to match that of the one people will know me as. Like clients vs friends. Just in case . . . there is really absolutely no reason to worry, but it's me and I indulge my neurosis sometimes. What to ya think?

Yay! Graduation!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Vision is TOTALLY overrated, right? - Did I spell that correctly? I can't really see . . .

Whilst walking to the coffee shop to work on my paper, look at a friend's paper and panic more about my paper . . . I apparently lost my glasses. And this is an actual lost. I have scoured for them, Kyle has too, they are gone. I thought they would be hiding amongst fallen leaves. The glasses are a copper color, the leaves brown and orange with tinges of yellow and red, some green. They would likely hide them well.

Now I think someone either stepped on them and threw them away or even better found them and thought, those are some awesome and probably REALLY expensive frames - I'm totally keeping them. Don't mind the girl who probably needs them to see! Who cares about that???

So I am wearing my old glasses which now feel ENORMOUS on my face and that are one prescription old - not too different. They are, incidentally, broken. Well they are staying on for now but in need of serious repair on their arm.

I am now going to have to return to my earlier punishment where I look like a 1950s librarian. Glasses on a chain around my neck. Not being Bridgette Fonda in "It Could Happen To You" I do not pull this off in a cute or darling sort of way. Just in a silly and sort of matronly way.

Back to studying . . .and wiping off the coffee I just spilled all down my shirt and face.

I am trying to find the bright side in today. Any suggestions?

Thursday, October 2, 2008

VP Debate - On a Serious Note

Joe Biden has helped make the world a better place and he and Barack Obama can help bring this country back to life. I have so much hope for this nation, as long as Obama/Biden win this November.

Joe Biden was brilliant tonight and the idiot pundits saying Palin "killed" and who are claiming that she won the night in some way were clearly NOT watching the same debate as me. It is insulting to hear that people think that her circular, unclear, "home spun", poorly phrased, buzz word responses were representative of the makings of a good debate.

Okay, I cannot write more now. I can just say that there is one path to hope for this country in November and there is one path for destruction. Can you guess which I see as which?

VP Debate - on a less serious note . . .


Soccer sidelines
Well, now's an important time to really figure out if the economy is good or bad.
End this war - no! - yes! - no! My son! Your son!
Tolerance. Tolerance. Tolerance. (I hate that word now)
No gay marriage.
Sure the "gays" can have this . . .
"That's for sure."
"Well darn't."
The Talibanee.

Wisconsin called - they want their accent back!

About Me

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Portland, OR, United States
I am a daughter, sister, friend, wife, counselor and colleague. I am a work in progress. There may be some pieces out of place and things might be messy, but it's okay. I would rather accept that I am still unfinished than think that this is it. You can find my comments on faith and spirituality on my blog: And my comments and anecdotes on life at:

Books That Matter. Well, some of the many that matter.

  • Magical Shrinking: Stumbling Through Bipolar Disorder, Chris Wells
  • Pride & Prejudice, Jane Austen
  • An Abudance of Katherines, John Green
  • Dave Pelzer
  • Franny & Zooey, J.D. Salinger
  • I Was Told There'd Be Cake, Sloane Crosley
  • The Cloister Walk, Kathleen Norris
  • The Developing Mind: How Relationships and the Brain Interact to Shape Who We Are, Daniel J. Siegel