hello again!

•June 15, 2010 • Leave a Comment

i certainly need to update you more often, don’t i?  sorry about that.

well, if you’ll accept my sincerest apologies, i’ll offer just one complex excuse:  i have been computer-less six months now, almost to the day. 

complicated, right? 

it is.  it makes life harder in some ways, simpler in many other.  it means i’ve lost track of many of your blogs and certainly haven’t kept up on mine, again, sorry.  please send me your blog address again if you’d like.  i’d like that.  it means i come into work early and leave late just so i can use a computer to job search edit resumes and cover letters and apply, apply, apply.  it has benefitted my literary life; i highly recommend stieg larsson’s three novels, beginning with the girl with the dragon tatoo.  it resulted in the demise of my facebook account; if you’re one friend short it’s not because i don’t like you, just because i didn’t want to resort to checking facebook at work.  it has also given me plenty of extra time to write letters; let me know if you’d like a pen pal!  and i still get to sew, bake and sleep quite a bit. 

i’m sure you could think of a lot of simple things you’d do if you took your computer out of your life for mornings and evenings after work.

promise to write more often. 

shalom.

oooooh! so that’s is why you stay at a job for 2, 3, 5 or more years

•October 14, 2009 • Leave a Comment

okay, maybe this applies mostly to human service jobs and not so much to people who deal in numbers, construction, office supplies, etc., but you stay at a job more than a year not because your employer wants you too, training hours are expensive, whatever, you stay because, when you work with humans, results happen in their own time and you want to be there.

this morning i raced to three different buses too early in the morning to get to a remote, industrial part of town with my very first spruce street client.  i started with her a year ago.  i can’t tell you the trouble she’s been for all her service providers.  but now she’s 18, not running, not on probation, trying to get her GED (even though she and her mom predicted once she turned 18 she’d stop caring about school), trying to get a job and trying to save up to get her own apartment.  this is progress i could have imagined a few months ago, but, in truth, never saw coming. 

what a delightful way to start my morning!  i’m glowing and i don’t even care that she found some guy on the bus she knew to chat with all the way back downtown, ignoring me.  i don’t care becasue she’s actually showing progress…and she did chat with me just a little before getting off that bus for her transfer. 

shalom.

did you see the world tonight?

•September 28, 2009 • 1 Comment

i’m not sure what it’s like where you are, but in my neighborhood the sky was not-quite-yet-midnight blue with a smattering of white, yes white clouds, despite the recent sprinkling.  the streetlights combined forces with that recent sprinkle to effectively exaggerate the green of the weeds growing amidst the thirsty yellowed grass.  colorful houses sat in bold and decided contrast to their constant, though ever changing, background: the sky.  and the fall leaves, still largely green, but transitioning, glistened in their coat of that refreshing gift from heaven.

…on this first cold fall night.

just so you know.  i’m doing well.  i’m living presently, after recently realizing that i’ve been living too far ahead of myself.  i make plans for the week, maybe month.  i spontaneously go on ice cream dates with new friends.  i mark up used vegetarian cookbooks for aging friends, newly vegetarian.  and i know life isn’t easy and am trying hard not to hide that knowledge from you.  you know it too; denying it would only be a lie.  but don’t judge me harshly if i still succeed in finding joy in my everydays.

what i should tell you even if i think you won’t listen:

•August 18, 2009 • Leave a Comment

my ideals, beliefs, vaues and morals are no less teased, purged, wrestled with or

sleep depriving than yours.

i walk softly and carry no big stick.

i grasp life loosely and desire to learn from you, but hopefully where reciprocity can be

respectfully bestowed.

i cannot stop hoping.

i hope for harmony. please don’t step on my hope.

i believe love is the answer and fills the gaps our individual human minds most plentifully

create.

my θ is love and more than fills my gaps, at least when my humanity allows itself to be

humbled.

i wrote this one night after realizing how hard it is for me to communicate with people who offer hate and passive aggression to me regarding subjects that touch my heart deeply.  i’m still working on being able to stand up for my beliefs, particularly those contraversial ones.  thanks for your support.

for all the saints

•May 17, 2009 • Leave a Comment

For all the saints, who from their labors rest,
who thee by faith before the world confessed,
thy name, O Jesus, be forever blest.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

Thou wast their rock, their fortress, and their might;
thou Lord, their captain in the well-fought fight;
thou in the darkness drear, their one true light.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

O blest communion, fellowship divine!
We feebly struggle, they in glory shine;
yet all are one in thee, for all are thine.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

From earth’s wide bounds, from ocean’s farthest coast,
through gates of pearl streams in the countless host,
singing to Father, Son, and Holy Ghost:
Alleluia, Alleluia!

Arnie Sonneveldt, age 92 passed away May 4, 2009

Eric Verhaar, age 22 passed away May15, 2009

pray for their families and friends. i’ve never not known either of these men. both i know through trinity reformed church, so please keep your thoughts with my church as it morns two great losses.  this is a song played as the closing song on sundays after the loss of a saint.  it will be played two weeks in a row.  thank you for your lives.

questioning myself

•May 15, 2009 • 1 Comment

americorps is making me question how competent i am.

i want to preface this by saying that i am not one to toot my americorps horn saying, “oh i’m being paid nothing to do everything.”  i am being paid something.  i am being paid more money than i have ever made in my life, granted, i’ve only ever worked part time jobs.  but i am being paid enough to survive.  it’s just far less than someone who should be doing this work should be making.  the point is that i’m finding that given all the circumstances, because this is americorps, and i am not given all the tools (i lack an adequate job description, supervision, and funding), i’m questioning myself.

i’m questioning myself because i’m not being paid what i’m worth.  and that’s what poverty is.  whether you have no job, are looking or not, or are working one to three part time jobs, but you’re still in poverty, you’re not being paid what your worth, and you’re not being supported in a way that shows your worth, and because of that you aren’t succeeding.  and no, i really feel like i’m not succeeding.  my role has had no structure since long before i stepped it, which means i get to make it up as i go along.  there’s very little funding for me to use for my clients.  and my supervision is lacking because my supervisor is juggling directing our center, supervising 3 other people, keeping our center open, and finishing up her masters in child and family therapy.  and that’s all making it really difficult for me.

so i’m not going to toot my americorps horn.  but i am going to say that it fucking sucks.  when we’re not given our worth, how is equality supposed to be a reality?  no matter what you’ve done. no matter how you’ve failed before. you’re still worth so much.  i want us to show one another what we’re worth and i think that’s why we are all alive.  let’s show each other our worth, not just our friends, everyone.

empathy

•April 24, 2009 • 2 Comments

i’ll show you mine if you show me yours first/let’s compare scars, i’ll tell you whose is worse.  ~rise against

i like empathy. i like absorbing your feelings, sufferings, hopes, fears, the things that make life for you. last friday i sat and watched a married couple-the man had only one arm-learn how to salsa dance given their unique circumstances. take a moment to think about that. you both need both your arms to salsa well. but they were doing it and the instructor was helping and it was all happening in the middle of an empty dance floor with plenty of people on the outskirts to qawk. observing this little miracle made me feel there was good in the world.

i’ve also been having lots of conversations about capital punishment and wrongdoers like somalian pirates and juvenile offenders. i cannot ignore the fact that we all have a past that created us and that not one of us chose the country, government, neighborhood, religion, family, or home life we were born into. we are products of choices and circumstances. i work with runaways and this is vividly apparent to me. i cannot condemn you. i will attempt to absorb your pain.

now let’s see if i’ll let you absorb mine. this is a much more difficult task. even if i let you in enough to know my joys and sorrows i may try to whisk the latter away with a laugh and an, “oh, but i deal with it.” please let me. i’m not ready.

 
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