My tongue is in my hand…

Archive for February 2009

My high school chorus teacher just joined facebook and I think I have been more excited about that than I have about anyone else I have seen on there. Mr. Boyce is a key player in not only one of the significant parts of my life, but also in the significant parts of so many other people’s lives.

It’s because of the way chorus was not just a class, but a group, a privilege, a family. Sure, there were some kids who just kind of ended up in concert choir every once in a while because it showed up on their schedule, but most of the people chose to be in choir. Many of us chose to be in choir as many periods out of the day as we were allowed. I think I took two chorus classes a year 10-12th grades. (So that means I sang a good amount of material more than once 🙂

The thing is, choral music matters to Mr. Boyce. And we mattered to Mr. Boyce. And Mr. Boyce had a way about him that let us know that while he would tolerate all our high school silliness to a certain degree, he was not really interested in his students not being interested in choral music. Mr. Boyce made it matter to us.

Mr. Boyce had little eccentricities that made him funny, firmness that made him respected, and genuine interest in your well being that made him someone you wanted to keep spending time in class with. Mr. Boyce worked every way he could to help us sing well and to get us to want to sing well. We buzzed our lips and repeated tongue twisters and made hand gestures to mimic sounds and laid in the dark all in the name of good diction, harmonies, and general musicianship. We sang Latin. We sang Oldies. We sang Zulu. We sang Christmas Carols. Sometimes we had to sway. Sometimes someone dressed up like Rudolph. Sometimes we wore beach clothes and sunglasses. Being part of chorus was being part of something. Former students came back to visit on a regular basis. We competed and took trips and bought videos of performances and had chorus t-shirts. Mr. Boyce read us essays of past student’s testaments to let us know, hey, this is a good thing, you better recognize it!

Being part of Patriot Singers was an honor, but I was most attached to Advanced Women’s Ensemble. Maybe because I was in it three years. We did so much more than sing. We had a lock in, a bake sale, t-shirts, breakfasts, secret santa and a decorated ficus tree, fast food hang outs after school, and gave out awards at the end of the year (we came up with one for everyone). It was fun and even though it wasn’t the whole class doing those things, those things were there, making us more than a class. More than that, there were a lot of hugs and tears and friendships, and some drama (I mean, it was a class of high school girls…) and we had competitions, that meant ROAD TRIPS. I remember cramming like 5 of us into a phone booth in Virginia beach for like an hour because we were cold (and crazy?)

Mr. Boyce laid the foundation for the legacy that was choir at Independence. No one outside of choir may have gave a crap about it, but that doesn’t matter. What matters is the way it shaped those of us who did. Those of us who were moved by making music, by creating with our classmates a sound that was bigger than any of us individually, by being lifted away from our individual concerns and focuses and pulled into a song, if only for the span of a class period at a time, even a song at a time. Making music with others is a powerful thing, it moves something in you, shapes something new.

Mr. Boyce cultivated this place for us, and told us he was doing so. It wasn’t a big secret that he was pulling us into the music, he insisted upon it. And that’s why it happened. And that’s why he had former students come back to school during performances so they could walk up to the the risers and sing “The Lord Bless You and Keep You”. Because choral music matters to Mr. Boyce. And we matter to Mr. Boyce. So choral music, and Mr. Boyce, matter very much to us.

It’s been a good night. Enchilada casserole, cake batter and wine (for me) with Nat while watching Beethoven’s 5th…just nice…

but then I get overwhelmed, tired, there are a million things to do and I just want to sleep but then I’m afraid the things will never get done…I just have good, organized, productive times followed by disorganized, anxious, confused, overwhelmed times, I want something I can’t have so I guess I’m going to bed. Leave everything as it is. I want to stop that, I just can’t tonight.

It’s like I get really foggy and there’s no room to think and I feel unsure of what to do next, so I kind of don’t do anything. I don’t understand. it did not used to be like that.

I can’t figure out if something broke, something changed, or it’s just the progression of life, of growing up, of learning.

I feel awkward parameters…I want out, I don’t fit, it doesn’t work like this.

I think, sometimes, it’s just pushing through the fog that gets you there.

Yesterday I sat down on a bench right in front of the library and saw a plaque that said “Bench use limited to 20 minutes. City code 11-20”. I looked around and it was on every bench in that area. I later told Alicia I guess you could just bench hop over and over throughout the day.

So, I took a picture on my camera phone and sent it in a text to people I thought would find it funny. Alicia called me later and said that in another library in the same county there are signs on every table telling people “Do not lay your head down, Do not go to sleep, Do not come in here if you have offending body odor, Do not follow people around staring at them in an intimidating manner.” Wow.

So then, I thought of another nearby library I’ve been in where there was a sign in the bathroom that said “No changing clothes or bathing in the bathroom”.

These are not even in areas where I expect there is a major homeless problem, but apparently something or someone warranted the making of such specific signs. I just keep wondering why was someone following someone around in a library staring at them in an intimidating manner? That makes me laugh everytime I think about it because it sounds like something someone would do on a Punk’d kind of hidden camera show. I mean, I’m sure it was creepy to whomever it was happening to, but it makes me laugh. And it makes me laugh that there is a city code regarding how long you can sit on a bench, like they are a hot commodity and everyone needs a chance (no one’s ever sitting on them, btw). I mean, couldn’t you just sit right beside the bench all day if you wanted to? There’s not plaque on the ground…

So, this with work are better. A little bit. I still don’t know how the hours will work out, but the position is still a professional one, so I feel better about that aspect.

This is why I always try to keep relationship things private, because more often than not, you end up back with the person, saying “it’s not that bad”.

Every relationship I’ve ever had has apparently been training ground for dealing with this job. Not the job when I’m doing work, but the back and forth up and down changes. Katy Perry’s Hot and Cold is I think about my company and not about a boyfriend.

My program manager just told me she wants to train me on intakes and assessments and reiterated that they will need more team leaders soon and she wants me to be trained. I’m highly confused about what I need to be doing and how I feel about all of it. One minute I’m ready to go Office Space on the whole thing with my confidence and security zapped into non existance and the next I’m feeling little twinges of hope and possiblity.

I don’t even think they are stringing me along, I think they have no clue what’s going to work from one minute to the next. I think it’s all a bunch of shots in the dark. I don’t know how I feel about work. For some people, this may be irrelevant, how they feel about work. But for me, it’s crucial to my performance and overall sanity that I feel confident and secure and like I’m doing something purposeful. I’m annoyed. And it’s kind of like when in a fit of upset you start throwing out stuff because you got hurt (or perceived a situation in a hurtful way) and then something happens and you’re back with that person and you kind of wish you hadn’t trashed the stuff, but you’re kind of glad you did because at least it reminds you not to be so naive.

Grrrrrr. I got married to avoid all this ridiculousness. (it didn’t work in that respect either, fyi)

I’m like a watched pot. I won’t boil while you watch me, and it takes a while. When someone delivers information to me that is upsetting, shocking, disappointing, etc, my initial reaction is barely a reaction. Even when something bad happens in front of me, like Natalie getting hurt. I’m not quick to panic, I just take in information, process it, and then react (this is obviously a sped up process if it is Natalie getting hurt, but still, no panic).

This makes it hard to ever voice my upset, because it’s always delayed. Information that I initially accept may upset me once I’ve processed it and then it seems like I’m acting weird about it, but really, I’m just reacting.

So, when I find out at work that I will go from my salaried position (that I just got!) to hourly again busting my ass to get hours working in the field instead of splitting time between in the field and doing paper work, I was initially okay. I even really thought I was okay, I worked hard to be optimistic, to think positively, to be determined to make it work well. But that has, through out the week, dissolved into other things. Anger, frustration, depression, and more anger.

I am dreading next week. They have restructured our situation to where this is basically a dead end position. A position that used to be starting ground is now the only ground. If you are only in the field you will never gain the experience you need to translate this into anything else. And they say you’ll still get the experience, but I kind of doubt it, just like I doubt we’ll get the hours we need, because I rarely did before. And my main concern is hours. They gave me a bunch of kids, which is all well and good except I’m supposed to fit 35 hours of support into 15 hours of afterschool time. And during the day do what??????? Watch my money disappear from my paycheck for every 15 minutes I’m not billing?

The system doesn’t work. It didn’t work the way it was, and it’s not going to work now. The whole system, not even the company I’m with, just the system in general. I tolerated a lot for the past couple of years with the idea that I would be moving forward. I feel incredibly cynical regarding what is asked of us. It’s not doable. And it’s not okay with me. And I’m not interested in forming new therapeutic relationships. I’m just not. I’m not interested in this job at all anymore.

It’s kind of like when you’ve been working really hard to hold a relationship together through some tough times and you keep giving and adjusting and hoping and then finally you realize that it’s never going to be any different and you just stop giving a shit. That’s pretty much where I’m at.

It reminds me of when I was working at the daycare. I stopped caring, I stopped having any patience with the kids or other employees. I stopped doing anything that took any effort if I could get away with it. I was just so over it. It was such a bad place to work. I dreaded each day. I had migraines all the time. It got that way once I was out of school and had Natalie and couldn’t find a job with my degree (it took 10 months!). I had climbed this big hill and I wasn’t anywhere yet.

Well now, I climbed this big hill and got somewhere and got shoved back down the hill and was told that it wasn’t exactly what it was. “We are utilizing everyone’s strengths ” Bullshit. You’re making as much money as you can.

I’m looking for another job. I know it may take forever. That’s depressing. I want to kick someone everytime I think about next week. It’s completely unfair to the people I’ll be working with. Everyone I’ve talked to is frustrated or concerned, but I don’t know that anyone else is as upset because they haven’t been hustling for hours out in the field for the past two years like I was, I’ll be interested to see how everyone reacts after a few weeks. I guess I’ll be interested. Maybe I’ll just be validated, because I’m not really interested in anything related to work anymore. I don’t want to do my job well, it won’t benefit me at all. I don’t want to learn new interventions or be organized or nurture work relationships or anything. I don’t want to do that job. I DON’T WANT TO DO THAT JOB.I thought I worked my way out of that job.

I am officially burnt out. I have this box of work stuff and I wish I could burn it in a field and beat it with a bat Office Space style. I’ve lost confidence in my company and security. For a company that focuses on Mental Health, they kind of suck sometimes at considering their employees, but they play it off like they care, it’s all very tricky and you won’t catch it at first. In the end, business is business and it’s all about money and I wish I hadn’t thought it’d be any different working in this field than it is any other.


Posted on: February 19, 2009

So, I know this girl who, when things went downhill unexpectedly at work after a long climb uphill, decided to do as little as possible for a few days and she cancelled appointments and layed in bed and binged ate and drank wine in the middle of the day (which according to American standards is not okay, but she just tapped in to some of that European bloodline) and watched sitcoms and laughed out loud while in a empty house and then crawled into bed and made good use of a Pure Romance party purchase. It’s all hearsay you know, but, that’s what I heard…