Category Archives: Learning

Ready, Set, School

I have officially registered for three classes which start January 14th.

I am taking: career counseling, sex therapy, and individual and family development across the lifespan. Oh yeah.

Three classes means that I am full-time. Yikes. I also have three jobs to pay for this. I might be a little crazy, we’ll see how it works out.

I’m excited, nervous, ready, not-ready, worried. You know the usual. I can’t believe I’m doing this now, at 37 (almost 38). This will be a three year journey to a job I’ve waited a lifetime to do.

This seems to be a story of 3’s. We’ll see how it unfolds.



Graduation Musings

Graduation was amazing.

At one point I wasn’t sure if I wanted to participate and I’m so glad that I did. It was meaningful, exciting and really felt like appropriate closure to one of the most rewarding experiences of my life.

It was great to have my parents and closest friends share it with me. I realized that I didn’t make it to that day alone, but that God gave me a most incredible support system that provided me encouragement, love and frequent kicks in the butt to keep me moving.

I didn’t torture everyone by asking that they attend the graduation ceremony but they did meet me for lunch afterwards at Cafe Santorini in Old Town Pasadena. I was blessed to have all these key people in one place just for a couple of hours.

All weekend I was just on a high. It was a great time to really be grateful for what God has done and how he’s changed me through this experience. I always tells friends that my grad school time was just really expensive therapy. By going to a seminary I gained a new perspective, picture and idea of who God is. Getting a degree from the school of psychology I was able to integrate that new notion into my view of humanity and how we can be healed and made whole, restoring that image of God withing our own understanding of who we are.

Seeing this time and season of my life come to a close is a little bittersweet. I will miss the constant stimulus of being in class with other people passionate about the subject matter. I will miss learning from key researchers, philosophers and mentors.

At the end of the day I just realize how blessed I am. God is good. Now I get to go help others through everything God has shown me. I can’t wait.

Graduation Announcements

In happy news, I got my graduation announcements in the mail yesterday. WHI-HOO!! More proof that I am really done.

I’m much more excited about this graduation than any other. Well maybe just undergrad. I was thrilled to graduate from high school, cause it meant I got to leave Mexico.

I sent the first announcement to my parents today. I can’t wait. I don’t even know anyone else I’m graduating with but I don’t care. I want to wear the fancy, heavy robes and I think for your master’s you get the cool scarf thing. I’m sure there is a technical name but you know what I mean.

I get to go pick up my regalia at the end of the month. I’m going to wear it everywhere – the grocery store, to watch tv…you think i’m kidding just wait.

Grades are In

I was talking to my mom on the phone this afternoon and she casually asked me what my final grades were for last quarter.

I had no idea. I completely forgot that after all the drama of grad school, they give you grades too. I have just been happy to be done.

So I logged-into the system and I got A’s in both of last classes. My final grad school GPA is 3.90. WHI-HOO!!

Now I just have to wait until June 10, 2006 to walk.

Last Presentation

On Friday night I had my final presentation in my family therapy/pastoral counseling class. It was an indepth analysis of all of my family’s history and dysfunction color-coded and graphically represented in a genogram. I’ve done some of this before so i thought I was ready.

I’ve spent the last three years of grad school dissecting my life – the good, the bad and the ugly. I’ve written papers on the trauma, prepared workshops based on my experience and practiced cousenling others. But I have never had to stand in front of 30 strangers and say out loud the different things that have happened in my family’s history and in my life.

I thought I would be fine given my own personal therapy and everything I just described. I thought I had worked through the emotion attached to it and would be able to do it focusing on the resilience, developed resources while being honest and professional.

I don’t even remember what I said. I had a cheat sheet listing several elements I wanted to make sure I didn’t miss but other than that – no idea. I love public speaking, but this time was different. It was ultimate vulnerability in front of strangers – not just presenting facts, theory or speculation. This was my life and my family heritage laid out for all to see.

I thought about holding back but knew that there is a lot of healing that comes when you give words and voice to your story. I have never said out loud to anyone, other than my therapist about some of this. Granted, I didn’t go into graphic detail but I talked about the family legacy of adultery, abuse, alcoholism, unavailable men, co-dependent relationships, etc. WOW! I was also able to speak about the history of strong, independent women and the blessing that my mater great-grandmother spoke over her son and his family for generations to come. I also recalled how my parents have stopped many cycles and worked hard for our lives to be different. It’s not all bad.

Maybe I remember more than I thought. But I underestimated the power of my story, emotion and all. I came home and just cried. It’s hard to sit with some of it but I’m glad its out there. I’m anxious to see how God uses it to help someone else.