Calamity Jill Breaks the Cardinal Rule of Internship

calamity jill

When I was at orientation for field at the beginning of the semester the faculty running orientation said something that made me snicker because I thought it was kind of ridiculous.

She was going over some Do’s and Don’ts of professionalism while in the field. One of the items was Do NOT take off your shoes. Are we kidding? That should go without saying right? Well as I sat in my office this morning with my shoe off I thought about that lecture.

I wear flats most days at my internship because I am on my feet quite a bit and need to be able to get around, I am not skilled enough to make this happen in heels. The flats I wore today have a pretty detail on them, it is a bow with a gem stone that covers the entire toe area.

I was about 15 minutes into my morning. I was in the process of putting down my tea cup and pulling up my email when I snagged my foot on my bag under the desk. That was all it took to rip the bow detail right off of my shoe. Crap. Figures. This was not something I was going to be able to play off but I did not have time to run home and change shoes, my first patient was already in the building. Time to problem solve and fast! I ended up taking off the shoe and using tape and staples to secure the bow back on to the shoe. It was functional for the time being although when I walked you could hear the tape squeaking around under the bow as it tried desperately to hold it on.

During lunch I thought I would have time to run to a store real quick and purchase some inexpensive flats to get me through the home visit we had scheduled for the afternoon, but no such luck. About 15 minutes into my lunch break (when I was half way to the nearest Target) my supervisor texted me to let me know we added another home visit for the afternoon which meant we would be starting sooner. I had to turn around, go back, and make my shoes work for the rest of the day. What’s worse is because I was trying to cram so much into my lunch break (including eat my falafel pita while driving) I ended up dropping tomato all over myself. My shirt and pants were covered in tomato juice, gross. I am sure this is not what my orientation instructor had in mind when she was outlining the keys to professionalism in field.

When I made it back to the office I scurried upstairs, refreshed the tape on my bow hoping it would hold through all the walking I would be doing, and scooted out the door again for home visits, tomato stains and all!

When I got home from work I immediately started studying for my midterm tomorrow only breaking long enough to tell Todd my story of disaster when he called after work. When Todd got home he had a wonderful surprise for me, coconut milk ice cream. He said it sounded like I could use it after the day I had. He’s a pretty alright guy, I’ve gotta say.

Another pretty alright thing Todd did this weekend was pay 25.00 for a practically new glider our neighbor was getting rid of. We walked up to the vegan tea shop at the top of our street with Lucy for lunch and on the way back we saw this nice glider. After talking with the owner we agreed to pay her 25.00 and came back with the SUV to bring it home. This is something we would be getting in the next few years anyway for a nursery and we knew it would be hard to beat that price. I set it up in the sun room and have been drinking my morning tea in it since we brought it home.

So yeah, today was a bit of a mess in terms of cleanliness and neatness of attire but none of it seems to matter when I am sitting in my hub’s lap in a glider eating coconut ice cream.

 

Busy Calendar

Last week my internship supervisor and I went to a training with another social work intern from UCF. It was put on by compass research and was very informative. The venue was great  too. There was an enormous resource library so after the event myself and the other intern gathered some resources.

Today the other intern and I went to a local agency that serves caregivers and learned more about their programs as well as other area resources. Again, great learning and networking opportunity. This is definitely an agency I would refer a client to. I was really impressed.

Todd ordered me some new books last week that came in today, can’t wait to start reading the first one tonight. Haven’t had a book to read since I finished my last one last week.

This weekend is the kid’s opening day for little league so tomorrow we will attend their games and after there are a few open houses we want to hit. We are talking more and more about our next home as I get closer to being done with school. The open houses are a fun way to check out floor plans and features that we may like for our forever home. College Park seems to be booming right now with new builds, we were talking about it the other week. We agreed it reminds us both of what happened before with the bubble before the economy crashed. I guess we will see what happens in the next few years.

Next weekend is Todd’s fancy banquet for work, super excited about that. The following weekend Todd and I will be attending the NEDA walk, one of my girlfriends will be sharing her story so he and I joined her team. After there is a “Bernie Music Festival” downtown. We have no clue what to expect but it should be fun.

There is also a women in the arts type event at the local art museum next week on Women’s Day that I am hoping to attend with one of my favorites. (AJR if you are reading this let me know if you want to go, I sent you the link on FB.)

So that is my current daily goings ons. The internship is phenominal, I am loving every second of it. Graduation is getting closer by the second, can hardly wait.

 

Policy Summit and Second Honeymoon in D.C.

dc nasw

In November Todd and I went back to D.C.. Part of the social work health care scholarship program I am in was a trip to D.C. for a day of advocacy as well as a networking event and panel discussion surrounding social work’s role in health care on  a macro level. It was outstanding.

I went with three other women from my program who are also scholarship recipients. The first night Todd and I went to dinner with my colleague in the BSW program. She and I had research class together and worked on literature review on the topic of physician assisted death.

The first day was the networking day at the national NASW headquarters. I ended up at a table with three other women, one from Louisiana, one from Colorado, and one from Illinois (I think). It was so interesting to hear how the laws in each of their states impact the work they do in the field. Something else that was pretty awesome about my table, all three were feminists. The woman I met from Louisiana I liked so much that I reinstated my FB account just so I could remain in regular contact with her. She is amazing.  I am in awe of the work she is doing. It was also really interesting to hear what each of their universities offered in terms of their social work curriculum. After the first day I met back up with my school colleagues and we worked together back to the hotel while we shared our experiences from the day.

The panel discussion was great as well. I have a decent undertaking of some of the roles social work plays in health care on a micro level but hearing from macro health care social workers was really interesting.

The second day we walked what felt like a million blocks (thank god for stylish flats) to the capitol to for a day of advocacy. The four of us met with our representative and discussed some bills. It went well and he was in support of our efforts.

Over all it was an exciting time, I felt super fortunate.

After my official business was finalized Todd and I spent a few extra days to celebrate our anniversary and have a second honeymoon. We revisited our favorite cafe, as well as some of the bookstores we fell in love with the year prior. We also visited some new places like Adams Morgan which is apparently a big party scene in D.C.. How did we miss this the first time around? We went to Madams Organ for drinks and I heard a karaoke cover of Drake’s Hotline Bling that was so good it gave me chills. This girl had an Erykah Badu quality to her voice, the way she sang the song was so intense it was painful, in a good way. I didn’t care much about that song before D.C. but now whenever I hear it I think of her and how stunning her version was.

dc madams organ.jpg

Anyway, hugely side tracked by that, so we did dinners and lots of walking. One of the highlights for me was the Blind Whino. Apparently there are quite a few abandoned (I don’t know if that is totally accurate to say abandoned honestly) churches in D.C. and the city’s way of addressing that is to re-purpose the buildings. This one became a nonprofit art club. It is even more incredible in person. I once read a quote that athiests love churches for the architecture.. First of all, Yes. And I feel like this stunning specimen speak s to that. While we were at Madams Organ we were on the roof and across the street was another stunning church under construction. When we asked the bartender about it she said they were turning it into a hotel. We thought that was kinda cool too.

dc blind whino

My thoughts were in a society of athiests is that what would become of these structures? Maybe. But I like the idea of taking a building that offered a sense of community to so many through religion and keeping that intention. By re-purposing the actual structure of the church into a community center you open up the symbol of togetherness to the broader community, no exclusions. I like that.

Anyway, that is my two cents about that. We had a wonderful trip. It was a great experience for me from a social work, networking, learning perceptive as well as an opportunity to relive our honeymoon one year later.

dc waterfall

 

Always in Love with a Book

A few weeks ago I went with one of my favorites to a clothing swap. It was as fun as it sounds. If you are ever invited to one, GO! Great opportunity to empty your closet and pick up a few new things for free. So this favorite that I went with falls into that category for too many reasons to list, but one of the things that makes her a favorite is books. She likes them, I like them, and I like that. Not all my friends read, and that is certainly okay, but it is really nice to have one that does to talk books with. So, while at the clothing exchange I started talking books with my friend and one of her friends.

I am sometimes a bit sheepish when discussing books with strangers because while I do read A LOT I am not exactly sure I can consider myself “well read”. I have read some of the classics, I have been known to read psychology and sociology titles, as well as books about social justice, feminism etc. But my true favorite is adult fairy tales. That is what I read and love the most. One of my all time favorite books is Watership Down. I like this genre because it is an escape. Some people watch TV/go to movies, I read fantasy.

Anyway, during the time of the clothing exchange I had been reading Alas, Babylon by Pat Frank (holy freaking awesomeness), and was discussing that with my friend and the other girl. It is kind of post-apocalyptic but the best part is it is set in Florida. The author is literally talking about College Park in the book which is the little community outside of the city that I live in. How fun to read an interesting fiction that is set in your area. After talking about that book my friend’s friend and I realized we both lean towards the same genre of books. I can’t tell you how excited I was to meet another adult who appreciates how fun this genre is to read. I have to say though, my friend that I was there with has been reading books by Aziz and Mindy Kaling and they all sound amazing as well. I plan on checking them out but I have a stack of titles I am excited to get through first.

So the book I am in love with at the moment is Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. It is young adult fiction and like most of my books, I am in love. It is a great story. Creepy, mysterious, very much a fairy tale for big kids.

After 9 hours at my placement and finishing my school work in the evening it is nice to have a story to be excited about. I have to say my evenings feel pretty empty if I don’t have a book to enjoy.

Panel Discussion and CAC Meeting

Today was the last Community Advisory Council I will be part of during undergrad. I learned so much from this experience. It was a first small step towards creating connections with leaders in some of the different agencies in the community and establishing myself as a professional in the field. It was interesting to hear what is going on with our program and the school on the larger scale as well. At the end of the meeting I thanked our program director for inviting me last summer and was met with a big hug. Again, I am just really thankful for this experience, it was very special.

Yesterday was our “class field trip” to APH and WPH downtown, which is part of the other major hospital system in the area. We listened to a panel discussion on social work’s role in health care, it was very similar to the panel discussion I listened to in D.C. last fall except this discussion had a micro focus and the other was macro focused. Very interesting. After the panelist hung around so we could meet with them and ask questions. One of the panelist works at the cancer center I hope to someday work at so I spent sometime talking with her. We ended up having a bit in common other than just the population we both are passionate about serving. She returned to school in midlife after being a hospice volunteer for sometime. Upon graduating with her MSW she worked at a Hospice in her area for years before moving here and starting work at the cancer center. Very similar to some of the career goals I have set for myself.

The director of social work at APH and WPH was present at yesterday’s panel discussion as well as at the CAC meeting this morning so she and I got some face time which was nice. While talking we realized that we were both at a CE event last week on suicide prevention so we talked about that for a while.

At the end of the week I am going to another CE event on the latest research surrounding Alzheimer’s disease. After I plan to stop by hospice and say hi to my friends who I have not seen since starting internship this semester. I am so excited to see everyone.

So in terms of social work this has been a great week. I met the director of the MSW program this morning as she was sitting in at the CAC meeting. She congratulated me on getting in to the program and discussed it a bit with me. I am still in a bit of a cloud when it comes to my acceptance. I am so grateful for this entire experience, it all just feels a bit unreal. Graduation is in a few months then I will start grad school and in one year I will be an MSW. I have been accepted into a Master’s program. I will have a Master’s degree. I do not take any of this for granted. I am so fortunate and so grateful.

 

.

 

Acceptance

light

 

I just got my letter of acceptance (electronically) to the Master’s Social Work program at my university. I am in tears.

I am accepted. Nothing that happened before now matters, I am accepted. It feels really good to say that. Sometimes I don’t know how I got to this place, things were so dark for so long. I am nothing but light and gratitude tonight.

This weekend and the Week to Come

This weekend was spent outdoors with my in-laws. The weather was beautiful. We went to both of the local farmer’s markets, ate lunch at my favorite local cafe (great vegan options), went to an indie folk festival, and spent time in the park downtown. I also managed to sneak into the bookstore and get a new novel.

In the evenings we played games and talked, a lot! Lots more social justice topics. It was a great weekend in my eyes.

Tomorrow my in-laws leave and it is back to business as usual. This week my intern supervisor, myself, and my colleague who is interning at a similar agency will all visit another local resource who serves our client population. That is at the end of the week, I look forward to learning about this agency and making new connections.

Mid-week my healthcare class is taking a field trip to the other major hospital in the area to listen to a panel discussion about social work’s role in medical settings as well as touring the hospital.

Also mid-week I have my quarterly meeting with the Community Advisory Council. This is the meeting that the director of the entire social work program invited me to sit in on over the summer. This will be my third, and possibly final meeting. I am the undergrad social work student representative on the council. As I graduate in May my position will need to be filled. If the director asks me to sit on as the grad student representative I would gladly agree but I do not want to count my chickens.

It is sure to be a busy week. The week following I have been invited to shadow a social worker who works in the actual hospital for a day. So excited! She works in maternity as well as in the E.D. This will be a great learning opportunity for me as well I am sure.

 

 

Talking Politics with my Dads

Politics have come up a lot this week in my family. After Bernie swept New Hampshire my Dad called with some encouraging words for Todd and I.

My parents and I had a heart to heart not so long ago that resulted in us being able to have a much more honest relationship and a strengthened bond. Among the things we talked about was my feeling like a black sheep in the family because my views on a lot of things I did not think lined up with the rest of the family. What I found is that my parents love for me is much stronger than I gave them credit for and none of this changed anything for them.

I am now out of the closet on a lot of things I thought I had to keep hidden to be accepted. This has resulted in a much deeper appreciation and understanding in my family.

So my Dad called after the New Hampshire primary to talk politics. We talked about feminism, we talked about who we like and who we don’t like as much out of the presidential candidates. My Dad said more than one time how proud he was to have such a fair minded, accepting daughter. I feel the same way about him really. My Dad and I believe in very different things but we both also believe in acceptance and respecting others beliefs as well as their rights to their beliefs.

On Wednesday Todd’s parents arrived for a visit. After unpacking the car his Dad sat right down and started talking to me about politics and social justice topics. I know I have mentioned this before but I will say it again, I hit the in-law lottery! Love Mom and Dad Baxter. We were on the same page about everything. He suggested a few books about social justice topics for me and I recommended some documentaries for him.

When I came home from my internship today he was ready to continue the conversation from yesterday evening. I like that he is so willing and eager to discuss this stuff for me. I love talking about social justice issues.

Tonight Todd and I will watch the debate in bed and I am sure Dad and I will have more to talk about tomorrow.

Finding Peace Lost in the Mountains

our view

We had two balcony, this was the view from our room.

Our River

lucy on the river

Lucy on the river bank

our river bonfire

Bonfire on the river

walk in the woods

This is the path down the mountain to the river

The Countryside

up the mountain

Riding up the mountain to the cabin

What we came across on some of our hikes

mountain view

The views were stunning!

North Georgia

Last October Todd, Lucy, and I took our first “family” vacation in the north Georgia mountains. It was the best vacation of my life. It was quiet and beautiful and everything I could ever want out of a “life break”. Our cabin was nestled in the mountains and at the bottom was a “creek” that was more like a river in my opinion. It was a private piece of property so it was secluded and we had the creek area all to ourselves for bonfires and playing in the water.

Highlights of the vacation for me:

Lucy got to come. She had a blast and we had a blast with her being there. Since the property was so open and private she did not have to be on the leash which meant lots of running and exploring opportunities.

Hanging by the river. It was a hike through dense woods down the mountain to the river but the hike was beautiful. We had multiple bonfires in the evenings, roasted marshmallows, played in the river and collected river rocks, played chase with Lucy, and just sat quietly together listening to the river.

Hanging in town. There was a sweet little town about 20 minutes away with antique shops, cafes, coffee shops, and artisan shops with handmade goods. Everything you would want as a tourist in a small town. I brought home apple butter and a tree ornament (a tradition we started our first year dating).

Apple picking. Todd has never done a mountain vacation before so I felt like apple picking was important. It was always my favorite part of mountain vacations as a kid and October is prime time apple picking season. We had so much fun in the orchard, it is times like this when I feel like his inner 5 year old and my inner 5 year old get to show up and play together. After picking out the perfect apples we took a tractor ride back to the farmers market and bought all kinds of delicious apple treats. Apple hand pies, apple cider, a caramel apple.. This place was amazing.

Time around the cabin. There were plenty of bubble baths, time in the hot tub, rocking in chairs on the porch, laying around in the hammock, and playing games in the evening at the kitchen table.

Hiking. We did lots of hiking. We enjoyed this aspect of the trip so much we have started hiking around FL now that we are home. I have always known that I feel at home in nature and now it is a family activity. We hiked up mountains to see the view at the top, we hiked through the woods to see waterfalls, and sometimes we just wandered.

The trip, for me, was therapeutic. There was lots of quiet time in nature, it was cleansing. There is no fear of acceptance when you are surrounded by trees, the trees don’t care who you are.

We definitely have plans for similar vacations in the near future. We want to travel as much as possible while we have the time right now. Next we are looking at Vermont. In the interim we are spending lots of time together in nature on the weekends.

Getting Under the Outer Layer

armor

There is someone I have been having trouble getting to know because I feel like their armor is a bit too thick. I get it. I used to put on a thick outer layer to keep people out too, sometimes I still do, we all do. My armor might look like rigid professionalism, an outgoing social extrovert, or the perfect family member. Whatever I have to show up as in a given situation in order to be accepted.

None of these portrayals are technically misrepresentations of myself, I am professional, I can be social, and I care about my family. They are, however, exaggerations of the truth. I am not the perfect anything for starters, I am professional but I am also a human being, and while I can be social I can also be socially awkward or completely anti-social.

So, I have been trying to get to know someone who leads with a level of professionalism and formal manner that exceeds what is necessary when we are engaging so it has been hard to see the person underneath. I have been okay with this because I understand it and I keep hoping that if I show up as myself maybe they will start to feel comfortable enough let down their guard a bit as well.

Today we had a break through. It came when we realized that we are both human and do not always have the perfect thing to say. Something bizarre happened today that left both of us scratching our heads and that is where we found common ground, among the head scratching.

I guess there was just enough vulnerability in the space where we were both a little lost to allow genuine connection in, sometimes that is all it takes.

 

Calamity Jill: Getting Friendly with a Coat Rack and not so Friendly with a Car Door

Two quick calamity Jill stories to start the week off with a chuckle.

This afternoon I stepped away from my desk to fill my tea cup with hot water in the break room. Upon entering the break room I saw out of the corner of my eye an employee standing at the far corner of the room looking out the window. Instinctually I said good afternoon and went about my business of filling my cup while thinking about a client’s file I had just been working on. Once finished collecting my hot water for tea I turned back around to head for the door and glanced over at the other person to say have a nice day. That’s when I realized it was a coat rack. What is worse is that this was the second time I had spoken to this coat rack, the same thing happened two weeks ago! In my defense there was a long black jacket with a hood hanging on it and at a glance it takes on a bit of a human form. I was just glad no one walked in directly after me and asked who I was talking to.

Unrelated but also mildly humorous was my recent incident with the car door. As I mentioned Todd and I recently bought a new car, well I found out the hard way that the doors close much easier than those on the BMW. With the BMW I have to put a least a little effort into swinging them shut but with the new SUV a breeze could knock the door shut, an excited dog could also do it. The weekend before I started my internship Todd and I were loading Lucy into the car to go on a nature hike. I was putting our hiking backpack in the front seat when Lucy came flying around the corner and bumped the door right as I was stepping back. End result = my thumb being closed in the door. When I got it out I couldn’t think, my nerve receptors were overloaded, all I saw was a white flash of pain when I closed my eyes. Maybe a minute later I was able to think clearly again and noticed Todd was standing in front of me with a hand on my shoulder asking if I was OK? I took my thumb out of my mouth and shook my head yes. He said good and then started laughing. I was befuddled. What could possibly be funny right now?? He took my inside, iced my thumb, and got me some Tylenol, and then told me what he saw when he came into the garage a moment before.. Apparently my reaction to getting my thumb stuck in the door was to start sucking it (I feel like that is normal), close my eyes, and lean forward over the hood of the car running in place a really fast pace.

He apologized for laughing because clearly it hurt but he said he had never seen me run so fast, even if I wasn’t going anywhere.He said if it had been a Bugs Bunny cartoon there would have been smoke coming from my feet I was running so fast. I guess it helped take my mind of the pain? I don’t know.

I was worried I might lose the nail which would be an awful way to start my internship but luckily that never happened. I do have a discoloration under my nail but it is growing out and I wear nail polish so you cannot tell.

What can I say I always seem to find a way to embarrass myself/get into trouble.

Sharing the Enthusiasm

I mentioned my supervisor sends me to meet with different agencies once a week to learn more about the referrals we make. The first meeting I had was with an agency that provides respite and I found upon scheduling the meeting that one of my colleagues from school is actually interning at this agency.

After my meeting with my colleague and her supervisor my colleague reached out to me and said that her supervisor has decided to do the same thing for her now and send her out to different agencies once a week. I was so excited for her because I am really enjoying this part of my internship and was even more excited to learn that her supervisor wanted her to start with my office.

So today she sat in on three geriatric assessments with us. We had a chance to talk a bit before they started, I explained what we do and what social work’s role is. When we were done my supervisor took sometime to talk with her about the assessments and it was clear she really enjoyed the experience. I was so happy! I am really enjoying myself and it was exciting for me to see someone else from school get excited about it too.

So as I walked her to the elevator we agreed that we would do some of the future agency meetings together since we serve the same population and will be going to the same agencies anyway. I am so excited. I am grateful for this new connection with her and to have someone that shares my enthusiasm for the work.

Work

I am really happy with my placement. I am so comfortable with the work, I understand it, I feel good about my progress and the contribution I make to the team. There is a lot of variety in the work we do which I also like, each day I have something different to look forward to. My supervisor had this great idea when I first started about sending me out to meet with local agencies we refer to once a week. I have learned so much and am grateful for the amount of networking this has allowed me to do. I have started a file box that I am filling with resources and it is filling up fast.

So I have to brag on my hubs just a bit. The long-short is that Todd is being awarded for the role he played on an important project. We have been invited to a formal banquet out by the convention center that is being held to honor the award recipients. Todd is not giving any of this much thought, he is not into this kind of thing but I am SO proud of him. He really likes the work he does and I am glad he is doing well.

The last few weeks I have been dress shopping, this is a black tie event and I have nothing appropriate. I finally found a simple Calvin Klein gown that I like. Although I know Todd is not making a big deal out of all this I think it will be a fun date night if nothing else.

 

Turning Another Page

transition

Six months ago I wrote this post about journaling and growth. When I was thinking about how to begin this entry it was the first thing that came to mind. I feel like everyday I am learning more about myself, about my relationships, the world, humanity.. I have been actively taking steps to make positive changes for a while now and I do not think that is something I will ever stop doing. Keeping an open record on this blog of my thoughts and feelings at times feels … I’m actually not sure how I want to finish that sentence.

Well as I open this back up and start what feels like another new chapter I wanted to reflect on the post above as a way to give myself permission to make mistakes and show up as my authentic self in this moment.

What I can tell you about the last six months:

There was a lot of traveling. South FL, North GA mountains (my favorite vacation thus far), Washington D.C. for an NASW conference and second honeymoon, and IL for Christmas.

I was sick a lot. I was sick pretty much the entire month of October and into the beginning of November. Then in December I got the flu the day after Christmas. Todd and I both got the flu while in IL actually and it prompted a bit of a life style change for us upon coming home.

Todd and I have gone almost full vegetarian. I think after being sick so much last year it just made us realize we need to be taking better care of ourselves. We still eat meat but only chicken or fish once or twice a week at dinner. I stopped taking in all dairy at the beginning of the year and my body has felt much better since making that transition. I also stopped eating red meat and processed meat as well as most processed food in general. I have had more energy and felt less run down since making these adjustments.

Last month I started my internship with the hospital I used to work at. I am so grateful for my placement, it is so relevant to my areas of interest in healthcare and I caught on very quick (not to mention I have a wonderful supervisor). By the third week I was flying solo and I have been ever since. I love the opportunities for engagement with the patients and their caregivers. I really feel like I have to say again just how overwhelmingly grateful I am.

I am in my last semester of classes. I graduate this May. The amount of joy I have in being able to say that in a whole other post in and of itself.

Todd and I bought a new car, a family sized SUV. No plans to expand until after grad school but we are starting to talk and prepare. In the interim Lucy is loving all the extra room when she goes on car rides.

The last part of this update surrounds my on going therapy. I have a separate hard copy journal I keep for therapy purposes, this blog will not act as a place for me to process what comes up during sessions. What I will say though is that the space I have given myself to address past trauma is probably the best thing I have ever done for myself. I think it is important to say that out loud like this because there is so much stigma around seeking out professional help, especially in the field I am going into. We want others to come to us for help but are unable to ask for it ourselves? That doesn’t feel right to me and I am not ashamed of the work I am doing so there is no reason to hide. My greatest lesson so far has been self-compassion and while everyone talks about the idea of self-compassion and it looks good on paper what I have personally learned is that actually getting to that place of self-empathy takes work. I am getting there, I love myself and my story in a way I never knew possible.

So going forward I have some more calamity Jill stories to share, including one in which I almost lost a finger nail (ouch!), I will share a bit more about our vacations last fall, I have lots of gratitude to share around different aspects of my life, as well as thoughts and insights as they come to me.