Monday, March 31, 2008

Amazing Strength

I am writing this post because I need an outlet. I have been crying off and on since I got home from tutoring today. These tears are not for myself, but instead because I am so angry and sad. Before spring break the parents of one of my students were reported to social services. I support reporting families 100%, but for some reason I was very nervous about this one. I came to the decision that I was so anxious because I would not see him for ten days, and the parents ALWAYS know how the information got to the schools. I worried about him all of break, and was actually pretty eager to get back just to make sure he was okay.

The guidance counselor came to my room this morning and said that social services did investigate, and the claim of child abuse was founded. Then the little boy didn't come to school today. I've had a knot in my stomach since this morning that just won't go away. I love all my students dearly, and after over a hundred days of school, my students are like my own children. As soon as my resource came, I went to the guidance counselor for an update. She said that the parents came in today, and claimed that they didn't need to show proof of residence because they are moving to another school! My heart just sank...

This child has been in and out of homes, and motels for some time now. He would spend hours sleeping in my classroom, and I would let him. He has so much potential, and against all the odds, went from a 4 reading level to a 12 in just 9 wks! It just hurts me that children have to go through so much pain, and yet they remain so resilient. The last day before break, I overheard him tell another child "I don't want to go on break, I wish I could stay with Ms. Dolan". How I wish I could have taken him home with me!

I don't know what is happening, and I do not know what is going to please, say a prayer for this little soul.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Analyzing the past

I have never been the type of person that lives in the past, but I am a firm believer that one should learn from their past. So, in that way, I tend to reflect on major occurrences in my life, especially when similar situations surface. I would never change anything good or bad in my past, because it has shaped me into the person I am today. I know that if some of the hard times in my life had never happened, then I would not be the empathetic advocate that has been able to help others along the way.

But, there are other times when I think about the small changes or alterations that could have happened that may have changed the entire course of events. Its like when my dad and grandfather just missed being involved in the bridge collapse in Point Pleasant (shown in the movie "The Mothman Prophecies") because they were running late. Its amazing how one little tweak in a plan can change everything. So, I have been thinking about the thing that feels so right, but is not working out which I wrote about in an earlier post. There were a couple of times that if I had changed the course of events slightly then it could have brought about a completely different outcome. I can't say that the end result would not have been the same...hence the butterfly effect...but I do harbor a little regret in my decisions.

While everything does happen for a reason, I constantly question how much "free will" plays a part in the decision-making process. There are so many things in life in which a person can stop, and choose to head in another direction. I just wish I had that choice now, another avenue to try, instead of the slide I am on where there is no other direction to go.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Imprisioned Wisdom


He speaks to me in the crowded room,
unable to say anything, but the truth.
Looking right into my eyes,
he is able to penetrate through his understanding.
He has the ability to see inside me,
like a humanistic superman.

He grabs hold of my heart,
as I know his pure intentions.
Always holding me up,
and keeping me afloat in rough waters.

I am continually amazed,
at his deep perceptions.
The words that escape from my mouth,
can not hide the true feelings resting behind.
I leave, walking the concrete pathway,
lost in the inner wisdom I have just gained.

It’s amazing how much he can see, without being me,
while others remain in a fog of their false realities.

"Eradicate poverty one bead at a time"

My cousin spent some time in Africa on missionary work. She bought a lot of beaded necklaces from the local women as support, and also to spread the message back home. The necklaces are made by impoverished Ugandan women as an opportunity to earn a living. The beaders are women living with HIV/AIDS, as well as, refugees displaced by the devastating civil war. Each bead is handmade from colorful recycled paper. To find out more about this great cause, please visit

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Where is it leading me?

I have always stood behind the theory that if you truly follow your heart, then you can never be steered wrong. Even if it ends up being a poor decision, you don't have any regret because the feelings you had were that strong. I question EVERYTHING in life, and have a difficult time coming to a decision I can fully support. I am not the decision-making type. I constantly question what I do or say.

BUT, sometimes I feel in the depths of me that I must follow a certain path. I don't question, but instead proceed. I knew that being a doula was right, so I jumped right in, and never looked back. It was the same with teaching, and eventually my master's program. ALL of me felt it was right.

Now I am faced with something beyond my control, that feels right, but isn't working. Every part of my heart believes it is the right path, but life keeps throwing debris in my way. I have never questioned the strong feelings that I am having right now, which have always led me to great happiness.

But my question to the universe is WHY? Why isn't everything coming together? Why is the envisioned path not smooth and tranquil? Why am I having these strong feelings if it is not meant to be?

My confusion continues to mount because I am beginning to question what I have always trusted...myself.

Friday, March 14, 2008

All in One

So, this may be a random post..but aren't they all? I am resting in a sea of wine filled bliss after a LONG week, and am happy to finally be allowed some time to myself. I have narrowed the tattoo choice to two quotes, and would appreciate any input. The first is "penitus vires quod decor" or "inner strength and beauty" and "veritate el virtute" or "with truth and courage". I can't decide, and I am probably going to go and get this some time over my spring break. Like I said before, I do NOT take this lightly, but I am hoping to come to a final decision some time soon.

This week was such a terrible week...I am blaming the time change and spring fever, but it is hard to say. I LOVE my students, but when they seem like they are regressing instead of progressing, I worry. There is still so much time left in the school year...

I am also trying to tap into my creative side, and think of a good party for my students. They have become so interested in the Magic Treehouse books, due to my immersion, and we just completed the 12th chapter book. I feel like they should have a party to celebrate our "travels", but I am having a hard time thinking of things that would be appropriate. I LOVE to foster the enjoyment in reading, and I have already succeeded in that, but I also want them to celebrate with me.

Anyway, it is late, and I have not written in a long time, but I wanted to express emotions I am having right now. I hope that everyone reading this is swimming through the same bliss as me right now! :)

Thursday, March 6, 2008

First Paying Client Meeting

I must preface this post by saying that it was nothing I thought it would be. I spoke to the potential client, and she was wonderful on the phone (they both were also wonderful in person). She gave me her address, and we planned a meeting for tonight. I took the address to school and printed off the directions, and then it all came back me...

This neighborhood was not a good one!!! I recognized the area, and on the way I could feel my "out-of-place self" trying to act tough while driving. I spoke with my friend Scott later, and he said "Pack! What the hell were you thinking??? We actually went down there bounty hunting, and a bondsman just got murdered not too far away the night before!" Okay, so he was right. It was not the right place for a young, white woman to be, but (in my defense) a pregnant woman felt safe to be there!

The interview was strange, and I was caught of guard multiple times. The husband asked all the questions not related to birth, for example "where do you see yourself in five to ten years?" and "explain how you got through a difficult time in your life". But, I had my "OH CRAP" moment when he asked "what is your religious affiliation?" I mean, are you kidding me??? Of all questions to ask me!!! Then he went on and on about the presence of Jesus Christ, and finally the paper quotes taped on the wall ALL over the house made sense. Those of you reading this, know my take on organized religion. I NEVER expected a religious discussion during a doula interview. I told them the truth, and that coupled with my divorce (yeah they asked that too) probably didn't seal the job or me. But, as I told them, I deal with things by saying "everything happens for a reason". So, not getting this job, could be a blessing in disguise. Her worry was that if she needed prayer during labor, that a non-religious doula may not be comfortable with that. Trust me, if I can handle all the other aspects of labor just fine, a little prayer would never hurt me! :)

So, this is another one of those experiences that I can log into my memory bank as adventurous and a learning opportunity.

Monday, March 3, 2008

What comes around...

A close friend of mine recently reminded me that bad things always come in threes. Well, my grandmother is in the welcome to my three. But, at the same time, three good things have come to pass. A student of mine left for another school. I am usually not happy that a student would leave, nor am I proud as a teacher to think this way, but I am relieved he is gone. I just didn't know what else to do with him, and administration was not supportive.

Today I received an email back from Penny Simkin (read previous posts to know the significance) in regards to my birth stories. I am so happy that she took so much time to read them and give me a lengthy response with wonderful suggestions. Hopefully one day I will get the stories together and present them to the magazine for publication as suggested.

Finally, I received a call from a potential paying doula client tonight. Of course, she is delivering April 30th, but the prospect is thrilling for me!!! I am so crazy busy right now, but a part of me enjoys the business because my mind can not wander to petty things. Whew...

I tried to write a previous post that did not publish due to the amount of new viruses on my computer. But, the post was about an addition to my current tattoo. I have never been one to become addicted to the tattooing process, but I have recently felt the need to add something. I am thinking about adding a Latin quote to my butterfly tattoo. I have been tossing many ideas around, and I will publish the last choices for reader's opinions. I NEVER take what I put on my body lightly, so I have already done a lot of research, and have put a lot of thought into the quote. It has been 7 years since I got a tattoo, so in my mind, I have had a lot of time to think about it.

Sorry for the randomness of this post, but I had the extra time, so I thought I would just keep writing. Life is currently giving me a lot of hits, but at the same time is bringing me to higher ground.