Pushing, moving, working

Spring is here

Spring is moving in, and the mornings feel glorious now. I had to brighten up the blog around here, what do you think?

Even the rainy days are necessary and welcomed. Last night, the sky ominously turned shades of gray before the sun was officially to set. An orchestra of thunder paraded the sky. It was a scary sight to be driving around in, but when the rain came down, it reminded me of Costa Rica. It was one of those hard rain showers, that first fell as sloppy drops before they turned into uniform sheets of water. It felt as if the sky’s regrets came violently drop by drop.

The mood reminded of me of Carl Thomas’ Summer Rain song. It was wonderful opening my balcony door and listening to the sheets of rain coming down. I got to cool down my humid apartment with the wind coming in. I am missing home at this time, that very enigmatic concept of home. Except I’m not exactly sure what “home” I’m missing.

Home is whatever you want it to be, in my opinion. It can be a place, a feeling, family members, friends, food, good memories. Or a new tradition. New experience. A place you desire to be your home.

I’ve been living in this area for going on 3 years. Not quite sure it’s “home” yet. And maybe it’s not meant to be. It could be a transition to my next experience, the journey to finding my new traditions. I made some great memories here. Accomplished some great things. I got a second chance at a career, and I’m finishing my first year in the field come July. I’ve been in love. I’ve been in lust. I am in love. I made friends. Friends left the area. Classmates also stayed. It’s been crazy. I’ve had lows and highs, and I’ve also met some really memorable people. I’ve pushed, I’ve moved. I am working. I’m “adulting” with my own apartment (sorta), bills, car notes, federal loans. Man, the grind is real.

I’ve done some significant work on myself, addressing my mental health issues. Last week, I began taking anti-depressants. I’m giving it a shot for 5 weeks. This was not a small decision, but I made an adult decision about how I want to manage my current symptoms. To be honest it seems like I’ve barely grazed the surface on the amount of work that needs to be done.

But I’m no quitter. :) Happy Spring!

What does home mean to you? Do you inhabit home right now?

She

Writing about Writing: How I Converse with My World

comic

I like my blog. It’s my space and I try to keep it honest and stress-free. When it comes to my “rules” for blogging: 1. I do it for myself first! and 2. Be Yourself. I don’t have rules about how often you should blog, a niche, quality content– I generally blog what I feel when I feel it and let the content speak for itself. I can’t put those restrictions on my writing, if I did, then I would just quit writing. Globetracer is going on 4 years old, and it’s probably my most longest commitment to writing consistently. Sure. I am like most writers; I have blank journals lying all around my apartment. However, I usually write on paper what I cannot share publicly. That tends to be short-lived. I am a believer that some things are sacred so I don’t blog about my romantic relationships. Not directly. Paper is where most of those angst-ridden emotions end up.

Sometimes I wish I had more to write about. I wish I had an awesome trip planned monthly. However, that’s not where I’m at right now and I’m trying to accept that. As sad as it is. I’m “adulting” right now, which means I’m learning how to live life contently working, paying bills, complaining, waking up early, eating out, having adult conversations and trying to find my happy place. Seems like if I could or wanted to write everyday, 98% of the content would be about work. And that would be boring. But that would be true. It’s where I’m at right now.

I’m still thankful. I have a handful of consistent readers, and even those who breeze through usually can connect to something I’ve blogged about. I love comments. I enjoy the “likes.”  I like the community I’ve built here. I want to start finding more blogs to connect with, and I want to start doing more vlogs driving my car around the City. I have a passion for helping those soon-to-be-graduates in Speech Pathology with what lies ahead in their journey to full licensure. I also want to start opening more about mental health issues, including a new step stone, which includes a psychiatric evaluation happening this week. Lots of firsts. Lots of emotions. Lots of maturing to do. Lots of content to expose. Stay tuned.

Buckle up,

She

Things My Life Consists Of

Spring is officially here! I cannot wait for warmer weather and riding in my car with the windows down, as well as being motivated to purchase some balcony furniture. Thing is, I don’t own a dining room set. So will it be wrong to get outside furniture when the inside still needs furnituring? cafecito 1. Coffee in the mornings or in the afternoons. I can’t stay up without it now. My friend was telling me about a “liquid” vitamin she drinks that helps with energy. I believe I have “low iron” and all in all, I should be on a multi-vitamin. My past history has shown that I’m just not consistent with pills so I’d rather save that money. Are you a fan of vitamins? Pills or potions?

2. Audible.com. I finished “listening” to my first audio book! It was called Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson. It was a fiction book, something I would have never chosen on my own, but I’m glad I finished it and it was a solid read. Stevenson shares his life passion and work with death row inmates who have been wrongfully accused and awaiting execution. Or children who have been sentenced to life imprisonment for non-homicide crimes. Depressing, angering and heart-wrenching to hear him speak of cases that would make a person like me loose faith in the justice system. But hope. I’m browsing the selection for my next book– I may continue the fiction bandwagon. What are you reading right now? Anything worth recommending?

3. The school year is close to being done, and I.can’t.wait. Let’s get through Spring Break first though. It’s coming up in April. However, I have no plans to travel as of right now. I still technically work in the evenings. Brain is craving some sort of retreat so…I’ll report back soon. Some sort of stay-cation may be more doable.

4. I’m chubbier. Which is conflicting because I like the way my pants fit now, however, If I lower my chin in a certain angle I see 2 chins. I’m serious! (don’t laugh) I know I’ve had some bad eating habits and can do better fitness wise. What I have tried to do is: have a consistent bedtime (even on the weekends), and set out some time to take classes but my work schedule also makes this difficult.

5. TV and lots of it. Game of Thrones comes back soon, and really everything I watch now is just a filler until GOT comes back! Here’s a short list of what keeps me entertained:

  • The Slap (NBC)
  • Married at First Sight (Season 2)
  • Fresh off the boat
  • Empire
  • Girls
  • Being Mary Jane

That’s pretty much it. When I’m not blogging, I’m probably watching TV so maybe there will be more adventures to share once Spring is here to stay! Time for cafecito, She

Roommateship: Dilemma

I’ve been sitting on this post for a couple of days. It wasn’t a post sitting in Drafts but it was an idea that was first conceived after a conversation with one of my 8 year old patients and metastasized after events from this weekend. An issue that was weighing on me from work has now been resolved and consequently cleared some mental space in which I can release some more thoughts as it relates to my living situation.

ME: Ms. Clarke is feeling tired today.
HIM: maybe you can take a nap when you get home.

ME: That sounds like a good idea, because I am going straight home after speech.

HIM: you don’t have a son?

ME: No.

HIM: so you don’t have anybody. just you by yourself?

ME: I have a roommate.

Many of you readers and friends wonder and ask how things are going with my roommate. In reality things are “cool.” I don’t have a roommate by choice. I don’t know that anyone wants or choses a roommate, if they can afford living without one. When I first applied for my 2 bedroom apartment, I was ecstatic about many things (namely, the cat I was going to adopt). Mostly, the freedom of having my own space. A couple of months after moving in, I enjoyed the space, however I decided it was TOO MUCH space for me. Then, of course, I realized that depression and living alone don’t necessarily help one another. There would be times were the apartment would be sooo quiet, and I would sleep hours away. No one around to check on me, to wake me up, or to talk to.

The financial responsibilities started piling up. And the stress of paying the bills by myself was making me enjoy my own space less and less. What have I gotten myself into? I was spending more than half my paycheck on rent! How could I be so dumb signing that lease?

I had gotten a 2 bedroom after the leasing office offered an available apartment. The difference between a one bedroom and a 2 bedroom was less than $20. My own home office? Sure! When it was time to consider my options, the 2 bedroom proved a great idea and gave me the opportunity to rent a room out. The hardest part would be screening strangers for roommates. I searched local church classifieds for “Christian” young women looking for rooms to rent.

I had at least 4-6 interviewees. There was one who ate food I had “fixed” and sipped a glass of wine with me. I chose her, and she chose me.

My roommate and I are opposites.

She’s a girly-girl, who loves fashion and clothing. She has bags and bags of clothing.

I have boxes and boxes of graduate school paperwork.

She’s loud and has lots of girlfriends.

I don’t.

But most importantly, I am a considerate person when it comes to noise in a shared space.

This past Saturday night, I was woken up from a delicious slumber at 4am to loud giggles, walking and banter about finding food to eat. My roommate had a friend over from New York. They came in drunk from the club.

I didn’t come out of the room until like 20 minutes after they arrived. It was blatantly inconsiderate and although I hate confrontation I also love sleep more. Before I could say much, she said “Hey girl, I didn’t realize you were here.”

Uhhh. I do live here, right?

I didn’t say that but I wanted to. For all the times I want to wake up early on Saturday mornings and blast some inspirational music to make it easier to bare heading to work. For all the times I have offered food I prepared, or shared something I actually hate sharing with people. I was angry. I am angry. I operate under “she’s home” unless there’s proof that she’s not when I enter my apartment. Is that a bad thing?

Next morning I get an apology text from her (something about “drunken moments” and “I didn’t think you were home.”). I didn’t respond because I feel like she should say something face-to-face.

Am I taking it too far? What would you do/feel?

Have you ever lived with an inconsiderate roommate?

Roommate-With-Courtesy,

She

What’s Rockin’ My World? Winter 2015

It’s been a while since my last post, here’s a VLOG to share What’s been Rockin’ My World!

Short List (or if you have to come back to the video):

  • I watch TV now. And lots of it! (Blog post to follow)
  • I am at the tail’s end of my Clinical Fellowship! Yipee!!
  • I am feeling like I have a sort of handle on my work load. 8 months in I am learning how to work smarter and not harder!
  • I am giving more time to what I am calling in 2015 my Passion Projects. That includes mentoring, being part of organizations that I support, and making more time for socializing and meeting other professional women in the area.
  • VACATION, VACATION, VACATION! Next stop: Montego Bay, Jamaica.
  • I am less than 6 months away from my big 30! Some of ya’ll been rocking with me for FOUR years since I started Globetracer. I was turning 26 and living in Costa Rica. My life is sooooo different now. Well, I’m still on that journey to happiness and travel is still very much a part of that vision. 30 came so fast! I have so much to show for these past 4 years! Thanks for being there with me.
  • This week we had two snow days back-to-back! I can’t complain but after one day I’m not sure quite what to do with  myself. What do you like to do on snow days or on unexpected days off?

What’s Rocking your World this winter?

Open Letter to Future Clinical Fellows…

Getting ready for therapy...
Prepping for therapy…

I really thought about documenting my journey through the Clinical Fellowship (in Speech Language Pathology) better. It was hard to turn my intentions to actions while navigating through a new schedule and responsibilities. I doubted authenticity due to A) I’m not anonymous and B) I wanted to write something that would encourage others, but I didn’t want it to force the “optimism.”

HI, you brave soul that made it through graduate school!

In reality, there’s no one word to describe my experience; it’s not black and white. It’s been the joy of a parent tearing up because her daughter can pronounce her name correctly (“You gave her her identity”) to a young non-verbal patient dropping his pants and peeing all over the rug we were playing on because he didn’t have a word for “toilet.” It’s being terrified of sharing current levels of performance during an IEP meeting to sharing with team members the results of testing and making goals and recommendations with professional flair. It’s learning what it means to be a part of a “school culture,” including to state your name and keep saying your name until the staff begin to use it. It means having your mini iPad stolen in a school building 3 weeks after receiving it as a gift. It means hearing a student ask “Ms. Clarke, are you gonna get me today?”

Point is, every day won’t be a great day but there is something good to every day.

This has just been my experience. Nothing can really prepare you for your unique road to certification, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t seek to find the best setting for you. Hopefully graduate school externships helped you narrow down what you like and what you don’t like. There are things that you will have to learn on your own. What I can confidently say is, you can do it. You’ll get through it. And when you don’t know something, you’ll find an answer (the same way you HAD to when you were in graduate school.)

I am 3 months away from Certification; the last step to full autonomy as a therapist. Half of me wonders where the time went, the other half remembers how stressed I was during the search, the interviews and the on-boarding. The transition from waking up late and wandering into a classroom to having to be prepared for meetings and to speak professionally about what is best for a particular student given his or her disabilities. We wear many hats as speech and language pathologists. On any given day, you may be called to be a counselor, a disciplinarian, a motivator and a listener. Communication is tied into so many parts of our lives; it is easily taken for granted.

Even still, I wouldn’t trade this profession for the world. I can’t wait to see what new positions, heights and new little patients will teach me as I get some years in this field. Today I’m taking some time to relish in the process. Don’t forget to stop and be thankful for getting to this point, many wish and pray to be where you are. You chose a field that is full of life-long learning and you are well on your way.

Don’t stop pushin’,

She