Monday, March 12, 2012

I've been completely preoccupied with 2012 and haven't had time to dedicate to updating this.  I want to get back into it a bit just because it's a good place for me to take stock of everything that's going on.  Life is an incredible force right now.  I'm experiencing this huge expansion in my reality and my body is having some trouble coping and adapting.  Lots changing.  Lots and lots. 

On that note, I'm going take this blog into the direction of tracking my path through graduate school.  I'm incredibly excited to embark upon this journey but I also know that it's going to really test me as a person and demand growth.  I'm not even sure I've touched on graduate school here.  So, let's see:  I got into graduate school.  I got accepted for Spring 2012 admission to John F. Kennedy University's MA in Counseling Psychology (Holistic) Program with a specialization in Expressive Arts.  I'm going to do the Buddhist Psychology emphasis. 

It's a three year program.  During the three years I'll be seeing a therapist.  The program requires a year of personal therapy but I also get hours counted toward my licensure and I find immense value in therapy so I intend to pursue it all the way though.  On top of the regular classes I have the ability to sign up for (and audit) seminars.  I need to take two for sure and then the rest are optional audits.  After the first year I can start doing field work and in my third year I'll do a practicum.  I will most likely try to work in one of JFKU's clinics for my practicum, but who knows.  I'm sure there are tons of opportunities that will come up.  After school is out I have internships to do do finish prepping for getting my license.  It's going to be a long exciting process and it will be hard.  I'm so ready.

Here's where I'm starting:  I've gotten my loans mostly squared away.  I just need to finish the checklist and then I'm set.  There's some anxiety centering around that. Having loans, I mean.  BUT, having loans has allowed me to give notice at work.  We're not making an announcement to clients yet because my last day and phase out isn't planned yet.  My bosses want me to stay a bit longer--we'll see how that plays out.  Work has been such an outrageously difficult place for me to be over the last year and a half or so.  Incredibly stressful, not very supportive and as a result I've been struggling with an repetitive strain injury since about January.  I filed a workers' comp claim about a month ago--it's been a horrible experience trying to manage this pain.  I've never experienced my body fighting so hard against something and to think it's a rather mild injury (major flare up though).  I can't imagine how I'd feel if I had a disease or something.  This has been a learning experience for me. 

A little bit more on the RSI just because it's so present for me right now.  Basically, it's due to overuse of the thoracic, shoulders, neck (etc.) and so the doctors diagnosed sprains/strains of all of that.  Regular anti-inflammatories weren't working (Ibuprofen, Naproxen, Aspirin, Relafen) so they put me on a ten day Prednisone taper.  Prednisone is intense.  I've done it once before but this time my body really ran with it.  Seriously, I'm a pretty small person and the stuff just made me feel like a little monster sometimes.  That and I think I ate EVERYTHING in my apartment over the last week.  So, now I'm off the med but I feel like I gained about seven pounds, my body is sore and I've got some other Prednisone induced problems going in.  All in all though the Prednisone did wonders on the pain.  So did the Soma I've been taking.  I've stopped taking the Soma as of yesterday too.  I want to see how things go and I'm taking Aleve again in normal doses, since the inflammation seems to be under control.  Also in physical therapy (which I feel makes things worse half the time).

So there's that.  Then there's work which I touched on.  And, then there's school coming up.  Also loving my home (still fairly new apartment as of November...).  Everything is pretty amazing right now.  I've also been spending a lot of time with one guy and that's kind of up in the air but it's been really good for me.  He's a sweet heart.  I've also gotten back into therapy already.  Specifically I went back for anxiety.  More specifically it was work/RSI induced anxiety that finally got me back in the door.  I like my therapist.  I don't feel like I click as well as I had with my last one but it's a process and it take a little bit of time.  I see some really good potential to make some really good progress with her and I really like how she gets down to explaining the mechanics and science behind the stress and somatic responses I'm feeling.  It helps me lock in and identify things...which in turn helps me to remember to cope.  That's probably what my next few entries will be about: stress and my learning process of dealing with it.

I'm enrolled in classes and two seminars.  The classes are Foundations in Expressive Arts, Group Process A and Intro to Therapeutic Communication.  The seminars I've signed up for are Soul Collage and Foundations of Buddhist Psychology.  I think I'll sign up for the dance based seminar and the Queer studies seminar as well.  It's crazy to think I'm starting in two weeks.  I have so much to get sorted out before then: new fully functional computer, get a desk, get my books, fix a couple things on my car, take some time and space for me, get work sorted out, maybe find a little part time job, get this RSI more under control, etc.  And then for me personally I just want to continue to do the art I've been kind of neglecting, pick up a couple instruments more often, lose some weight and just be more fit in general... AND, I want to have more get-togethers at my apartment.  I want to love my home so much that just being here triggers a conditioned happy/calm response. 

That's about it.  I'll check in more often as school ramps up.  I'm excited to see how this all goes.

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