...of gratitude.   And remembered the successes.  And prayed.  And thought about everything in the bigger picture.

I'm still here.

Of course.

In case you hadn't guessed, I'm a little neurotic.  One of those neuroses is I hate (so hate) to be thought of as anything but kind and compassionate.  And I can't, of course, control other people's feelings or thoughts (and they are, so often, entirely separate from me or anything I could have said or done).

I think we might be on the other side of the accusations.  Time will tell.  No formal complaints were filed.  Yet.  I know my character.  There were other therapists and law enforcement present that will attest to my actions.  All of that is pure and logical and, even if a formal (false) complaint was filed, my hope is that  my past work, my current work, and the witnesses that were there would cover the allegation.  (I obviously can't speak about it in detail.)

But still.  It still grieves me a little.

These things have helped:

a therapist team that has stood by me.  a supervisor who essentially told me to get over it.  whispers that i was hired so quickly because the agency couldn't bear to pass me up.  messages of competence.  good (i mean, heart breakingly good and productive) sessions with clients this week.  finding stillness in the storm, and in that, re-finding the love for human beings that drives my work.  text messages from BreAnna and Katelyn (thanks, girlies, you have no idea...) and messages of love from Cherrie.  a husband who snorted and said, "good grief, wife.  why are you even worrying?"  a husband who then said, "Of course you wouldn't do that.  you're more the steal children type of worker"  (said tongue in cheek, dear readers).  a sister who said, "are you joking me right now?"

All of these things help remind me of who I am and what I'm really trying to do. 

Big picture.  I think that's my life lesson of late.  Keep in mind the bigger picture and don't let the worries (of which there might be several) of the minute chain me.  It's funny that I'm focusing on that right now, as this is the same lesson that's being paralled by so many of my clients.    We're all just focusing on being here, right here.  Right now.  Breathing in.  Breathing out.  Figuring out our true selves. 

I adore this poem by Thich Nhat Hanh (1978) and have been meditating on it often.  It's displayed in my office and it often catches the eye of co-therapists and clients alike.  It helps me stay connected - to you, my husband, my co workers, my clients .... and even those who don't yet know what it's like to speak truth.

Call Me By My True Names

Do not say that I'll depart tomorrow
because even today I still arrive.

Look deeply: I arrive in every second
to be a bud on a spring branch,
to be a tiny bird, with wings still fragile,
learning to sing in my new nest,
to be a caterpillar in the heart of a flower,
to be a jewel hiding itself in a stone.

I still arrive, in order to laugh and to cry,
in order to fear and to hope.
The rhythm of my heart is the birth and
death of all that are alive.

I am the mayfly metamorphosing on the surface of the river,
and I am the bird which, when spring comes, arrives in time
to eat the mayfly.

I am the frog swimming happily in the clear pond,
and I am also the grass-snake who, approaching in silence,
feeds itself on the frog.

I am the child in Uganda, all skin and bones,
my legs as thin as bamboo sticks,
and I am the arms merchant, selling deadly weapons to

I am the twelve-year-old girl, refugee on a small boat,
who throws herself into the ocean after being raped by a sea
and I am the pirate, my heart not yet capable of seeing and

I am a member of the politburo, with plenty of power in my
and I am the man who has to pay his "debt of blood" to, my
dying slowly in a forced labor camp.

My joy is like spring, so warm it makes flowers bloom in all
walks of life.
My pain if like a river of tears, so full it fills the four oceans.

Please call me by my true names,
so I can hear all my cries and laughs at once,
so I can see that my joy and pain are one.

Please call me by my true names,
so I can wake up,
and so the door of my heart can be left open,
the door of compassion.

Thich Nhat Hanh


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