Tuesday, March 04, 2008
So our landlord suddenly decided he had a problem with our dog. Went off on Kevin and made a huge stink. After some legal advising (c/o someone I work for who's a lawyer), icky land lord has no ground to stand on. Regardless, we don't want to live here anymore. So...
Taking advantage of the absolutely stagnant housing market, Kevin and I are trying to buy a house. House shopping, signing papers for the mortgage broker, trying to make our crazy schedules match with a realtor....
We found a couple of houses in really nice neighborhoods that are priced lower than the average home in those neighborhoods. One is really low but we'd do a lot of changes, some immediate, some over time. The others are at the top of our price range, so it would be harder to make any changes if they're needed. We haven't seen anything from the inside yet, but we peaked in a lot of windows (of vacant houses only, of course). We've got high standards, but we've got time and a crappy market on our side. Some houses are sitting for years. We know of several people who pulled their houses off the market after a year or two. One house in their dad's neighborhood has been on the market for 5 years or so. People are finally starting to lower the prices and things are affordable again.
But, that's all for now. At least all I can share. I'm mixed up in this preposterous drama at school which is annoying, but nothing of consequence, at least for me.
Back to homework and getting this place presentable.
Thursday, February 21, 2008
So "Fidel Castro" sends out this letter saying he won't accept another nomination for "president" of Cuba. Interesting. I'm not convinced it was he who sent the letter, nor am I convinced he's even alive.
It's been suggested that his much less charismatic, though far more brutal brother, Raul, will be nominated. While Raul has been standing in for Fidel while he deals with his "failing health" (and/or death), I don't think he'll be able to hold the country together once he's officially in charge. I've read some pondering about some other politician in Cuba being nominated--getting some young blood in there--mind you the young blood I've seen mentioned is 56. I guess if you consider he was only a school boy when Fidel seized the country in late 1959 he would be considered "young."
March should be interesting, just as we line up our candidates for our own presidency, Cuba will "nominate" a new ruler. Now if only we can keep our own driving needs to maintain "manifest destiny" out of Cuba's realm, they might have some sort of a shot at becoming free. And I say becoming free by however they choose to define it. Just because our "freedom" works for the United States, I fully disagree with attempting to impose our beliefs on another country. Just take a look at the middle east or read Bitter Fruit if you need any examples of how it doesn't work. Baby Bush is already jumping on the "let's save Cuba" bandwagon. Leave well enough alone. They'll figure it out and ask for help when/if they need it. It may get ugly, but could you honeslty expect anything else. Fidel was in power longer than any other ruler worldwide (save monarchs). For nearly 50 years it was just whatever he said. If he's not calling the shots, is their old system going to be able to work? Will a new system emerge? Or will we see a series of overthrows, constant toggling for power?
Maybe things won't change. I think they will, at least to some extent. I'd love to see their economy open up. I'd love to be able to travel there. I'd love to see their schools be open to US students. You may or may not know that Cuba has one of the BEST education systems world wide. It's that their economy is so bad that MDs can make more money driving cabs. I'd love to see the United States and Cuba to get over themselves and allow free travel--let families visit each other, let tourists invest in their economy.
Now that I'm in a totally different academic setting, I've got no one to debate, ponder, and/or bounce ideas off of in this respect. Agree, disagree, whatever, I'd love to see some amount of discussion/debate on the topic.
I guess once your body gets used to eat at least somewhat healthy, it really revolts against the not so healthy stuff. I've been trying hard to pay attention to what I eat lately. Last night we didn't manage to get around to eating until nearly 9:00pm. Considering we usually go to bed around 10-11, that's LATE. Being that it was getting so late and we had little to nothing to eat at home, we decided to go out. Just as we were getting in the car, the phone rings. Kevin's mom wants to meet us. Sure, great. Well, we wind up at Bennigans. I'm not a fan to begin with, but whatever. We get there and nothing looks good to me except a burger. I do not eat burgers. I've just never liked them. So it's a bit odd that I would want a burger, but hey, I have been known to eat one every few years. MISTAKE!!!! I got this grease laden pile of fat with a side of french fries. I almost never eat french fries anymore either--not because I don't LOVE them, but because they're way more fattening than I'd like to ingest. Yeah, ate every single one on my plate.
I went to bed feeling less than attractive. Slept for shit. Woke up feeling like I was oozing grease from every pore of my body. My stomach is still all angry and threatening to mutinty at any minute. And I'm afraid to wear anything that puts any amount of pressure on my stomach.
Time to get ready for work and school.
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
One of the hardest things about becoming a counselor is knowing how to be a counselor and not being able to turn it off in my personal life. I know why your kids are acting like that, and I know how to make it better for you and them. I know why you can't find a boyfriend that will treat you right and I know how to fix it. I love you all and want to tell you, but I'm not your counselor--I'm your friend, your lover, your sister, your daughter, your aunt, your nanny. I have no kids of my own; yet I find myself handing out parenting advice. It's not that I pretend to know what it's like or that I could do any better. I've just spent the last 1/3 of my life working with kids and the last couple of years learning about the mind. I just wish I could figure out how to get that across without being a childless know it all.
We're supposed to be working on this huge paper for one of my classes. It's about our theory of counseling, how we believe people are in general, how they are when they're born, how they become good or bad, how they operate, how they get in trouble, and based on all of that, how we're going to help them see all of that so they can get out of whatever trouble that brought them to us. Everything I know about everything has been constantly challenged in my life. When I think I believe one thing, something contradictory slaps me in the face--and it's usually myself. Then to lose a friend so unexpectedly...makes you question EVERYTHING and leaves you with not a single answer. The harder I try to wrap my mind around things, the harder it seems to be to come to grips with it.
I feel very empty and lost and scared and vulnerable. I snapped at Kevin last night. My intense anger didn't match the minor annoyance of what I was upset about. It wasn't fair and I felt terrible. I told him that.
On a side note, I'm pretty sure God designed the small child to need a nap, not for the child's benefit, but the caregiver's.
Friday, February 08, 2008
For those who just might pick up where I left off, my life has changed dramatically, but for the good. I'm engaged to a wonderful man who truly is Prince Charming--see previous posts (like 2 years old) about him. The wedding is set for August 2, 2008. Most of the arrangements are made. I just bought my dress last weekend. It's beautiful, but I won't actually get to see it until May. I was so excited and so ready to show off my pictures.....
I've been steadily working towards my Masters in Mental Health Counseling and Masters Certificate in Marriage and Family Therapy. I joined a cohort program. Basically that means that all of the courses we take are together. And these courses are hard core and emotionally intense. I know more about the people in my cohort than I do about some of my friends (and vice versa).
That brings us to now and my current whirlwind of emotions. One of the people in our cohort passed away, very suddenly and very unexpectedly. I've cried and cried until I can't cry anymore. We've had a counselor come and process with us as a group. I've heard every "I'm so sorry." I'm sick of it all. And she would be, too. I'm sad and lost and scared and angry and numb.....numb....numb and sad. Melancholy, really. Nothing makes sense, yet it's all vividly clear.
She was put here for a reason, to touch lives, to change people, to affect things we'll never understand. She did what she was put here to accomplish and God called her home where she could be free from her aliments, a reward for her hard work on earth...
I wrote that quote awhile back. I've found it useful for so many "expected" deaths for myself and friends mourning various losses. It somehow remains poignant today.
That's I'll I've got for now. Maybe I'll be back around... maybe I'll study for my intense exam on Monday. We'll see where the wind blows.