Again, I think it’s about having a lot to do and not much reflection upon it. This week, dear 1.5 readers, has been particularly painful in a number of ways. I alluded to the situation with a child of friends and it appears that situation will be coming to a head on Tuesday. A number of things may happen. To respect their privacy, I am not going to say anything more, except that the reality of this happening in your own life is a thousand times more painful than when it happens professionally – and I suppose that’s as it should be.
Things are moving along with the Stephen Ministry training. I’m meeting some really lovely people, but since it’s still early days, I haven’t really met all of them fully. Every one of us is broken in our own way, and I think that’s the nature of Christianity – of all faith, really; the broken helping to heal the broken and gaining something in the process greater than both of them. I have used the phrase from Carly Simon’s song Coming Around Again, “So pardon me if I fall apart, there’s more room in a broken heart.” I really believe that it’s in those broken spaces that we make room for the Divine presence.
Whew – pretty heavy stuff for a Saturday afternoon! What can I say? My more profound experiences happen at the most pedestrian of moments. No violins, no orchestra playing in the background, no spectacular sunsets – instead, the lawnmower is going, the dirty dishes and dirty bathrooms await me and the TV is playing some cooking show. Oh yeah that be me!
I wish I could begin to express the jumble of emotions that greeted me this week. On Monday, I had the issue with the aforementioned child and her family (as previously stated). Tuesday was a visit with a child who disclosed sexual abuse and the ensuing reporting to the various social workers involved with her family. The fun part of my day was bell practice, but even there I felt rather badly, because I am preparing for a performance I may not make and I hate not living up to my commitments.
Wednesday, I had court in the morning – a hearing to correct an order – really a technical issue. So of course I endured a ten-minute tirade from an irate custodian who did not understand what I was doing and would not listen when I tried to respond to her. I finally had to tell her (politely of course) to shut up and listen and she was finally mollified. Oy.
Wednesday afternoon was a fascinating town meeting in the form of a Family Team Decision Making meeting – or FTDM – a new construct used by local departments of social services (or family services, depending on your jurisdiction) to bring the family and community members (invited by the parties) into the decisionmaking process regarding a particular child. It has its value, but of course my concern – and that of many of my colleagues – is that it tends to bypass what should really be a part of the court process. That being said, the meeting was very productive. It was very good to meet others in the community involved in or impacted by the foster care system. Hopefully some real good will come out of it. We shall see.
But the shining star in that whole afternoon was that one of our former clients spoke to the group about his experience in foster care. Having been in court in the morning, I was unable to hear his presentation. At the lunch break, I ran up to him and gave him a big hug and of course sat with him at his table. “V” is going into the Navy. He is doing well as is his brother. I gave him my e-mail address and told him he’s not allowed to go into a war zone, that I’d write a note to his CO. He laughed. V and his brother had a CASA. I will always believe this lady, who never judged them and only loved them, is the reason those two made it out of childhood and the foster care system alive and reasonably sane.
Moments like that keep me keeping on, lemme tell ya!
Wednesday, I went to a church-sponsored learning experience called “Living the Question.” Nancy and Rennie told me about this and I thought I’d give it a shot. It was well worth the trip. We talked about our views of the Bible and faith in general. It was so nice talking about God with grownups, LOL:) I’m missing the next session in a couple of weeks, because of a conference, but really look forward to the next one. In some way, this is a time for me of spiritual nurturing and I certainly need that! Hopefully, I can contribute to the discussion in a meaningful way.
Thursday was another interesting day. I had one hearing in the morning and one in the afternoon. Obviously I don’t want to say too much about the hearing, except that the Master sent my client home – finally! DSS was not amused. In fact they were furious! (It’s OK, the worker thought it through and called me the next day to say she had decided not to appeal – I expect them to be passionate about their work and do not take anger personally, LOL.) But to see the look on that young person’s face when she finally went home with her mother was worth every pain in the ass hearing I’ve been to for the past six years. I only hope and pray this works out for them.
Thursday afternoon was taken up with visiting clients and then I had choir practice. It was an excellent rehearsal – we got a lot done.
Yesterday (Friday) was a full day of court and all of it was fairly non-eventful save one of the a.m. hearings, but even in that one I was able to get my client some of what she wanted. I count myself lucky when I have a day like that:)
This morning was a longer Stephen Ministry training. I brought my knitting (Arwen for myself – it’s at the 2000 miles of mind-numbing stockinette phase, so I figured why not.)
Speaking of knitting, I’m making a bunch of progress on the Daily Sweater from Mason-Dixon Knitting Outside the Lines. I’m still doing the increases which feel like they’re way too large, but when you realize you’re going to subtract out the sleeve stitches later, it makes a lot of sense. I also started the DaVince KAL stole after getting a LOT of help from a couple of Ravelry DaVinci shawl group members (BLESS YOU!!) with the clues – good thing I know German and a bit of French, not that it helped ME any, thank you very much! A couple of pics are posted here. I keep thinking this would be a terrific shawl for Diane – who looks fabulous in icy cool tones, or Nancy, a “summer”.
I have to laugh – at the rate I’m going, I’ll still be knitting half my projects in the nursing home, LOL! By then Madison and Ruby will not even be interested in wearing them:)
I’m also keeping up with my Red Scarf Project scarf and am making some progress, but the due date is 10/31, so I’d better get cracking!
I don’t know what it is, but lately I feel like I’m becoming estranged from a dear friend and I don’t really know what it is. It’s the same person who seems to do this every year at this time. I’m not sure what is going on and some day I’ll figure it out, but I’m sort of scratching my head over it because I know I haven’t done anything particularly loathsome (more than my usual, that is), so either I’m not paying attention (highly possible) or she has a problem (also likely). Who knows? I guess I’ll figure it out eventually. I’ll just keep on being the only person I know how to be – myself.
Hope you are all enjoying this lovely weather – as for me, I’m heading back out – gotta pay the rent (no, literally, I’m dropping off the rent check, LOL:))
+ God be with you ’til we meet again.