Thursday, June 20, 2013

Two Steps Forward

Several nights ago I got some good a dream.  Ken and I must have been building something because I had my paint clothes on.  There was an older guy helping us.  We took a break and were making small talk when the guy asked me what I was up to.  I told him I was applying for teaching jobs.  He looked at me over his glasses and kindly suggested that I could sound more enthusiastic.  He asked me where I was applying.  I told him, and he gently advised that I could look closer to home.  He was right on both counts.

Deep down I knew these things, but it helped to hear it out loud from a character in a dream.  I have decided to return to teaching and want to stop sounding so tenuous about it.  I sound apologetic when I am asked what I'm doing and make excuses for not doing something else.  That's on me.  It matters how I frame what I'm doing, the words I use and my tone of voice.  I could sound more enthusiastic.

And I have been spreading too wide a net.  Twenty miles from home turned into thirty and would soon be forty if I didn't put the brakes on.  I have actually considered schools forty miles north of me.  That's quite a commute for a teacher on an ordinary day, but on a day when I want to have dinner with my daughter it would be impossible.  In September my daughter will start a new job in southern Maine, teaching at the medical school and treating patients in the attached clinic.  We are already talking about how we will make time to see each other.  While those plans don't dictate where I will work, it makes sense to look at schools a reasonable distance from home and not in the exact opposite direction. Right now the field is wide open so why not take advantage of that?

This week I made another decision:  I'm going to an educational conference at my alma mater Goddard College in Vermont in mid-July.  I haven't been back to visit in many years and haven't attended a conference there since I graduated in 1999.  I wasn't planning to go because I haven't been teaching and couldn't imagine what I have to offer.  Upon reflection on my dream advice, this conference could spark my enthusiasm.  I won't know if I don't go.      

The journey continues....

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

With Ease

Millie has decided she likes to sit on my lap ~ while I'm eating, sewing, typing, or just sitting.  The advantage of being on my lap while I'm on the computer is that my hands are readily available for petting her, with a bit of encouragement from proper head placement on the keyboard.  She is eating and gaining weight.  This morning was the first time I heard her pawing at the door, wanting to come in from her sleeping space in the attached garage.  We've even heard her purr occasionally.  I think she's decided she'll stay~

Millie has had lots of lap time in the last couple days because I've been working quite a bit on the computer.  Three weeks ago I had the desktop updated with Windows 7 and additional memory, and I have been asking myself why I didn't do it sooner.  I can actually count on the computer to work ~ what a novel idea!  I had two years of emails to go through, and it has been a pleasure instead of a chore to move back and forth among accounts and documents.  I can access websites and leave windows open.  I realized this morning how easy it is to use the computer now. 

After my massage on Thursday, my therapist advised me to get off the table with ease, to be aware of how I was moving.  I did and I have tried to carry that ease with me.  For six months I've been working to breathe easier, and finally it feels like I can for more than a few hours at a time.  I asked my daughter why it has taken so long; she said it's like blowing up a balloon, where we blow and blow and it seems like nothing is happening...then we begin to see progress.  Slowly and steadily I have been working to open, to breathe, to feel ease.  It is happening slowly.  My hope is that the gradual changes will stay with me.

While sorting through emails I found a quote sent by a friend last September.  It speaks beautifully to what I am learning to do ~     

"Be patient with all that is unresolved in your heart, and try to love the questions themselves. Do not seek for the answers that cannot be given, for you wouldn't be able to live with them, and the point is to live everything. Live the questions now, and perhaps without knowing it, you will live along someday into the answers."

--Rainer Maria Rilke