Saturday, April 23, 2011

Just when I think I've had enough

It's been over a month since I showed up to blog.

The good news is that the flowers are blooming and it is warming up.

The tougher news is that a close family member is leaving a spouse. There are all kinds of issues wrapped up in that scene. I think that the main thing is that because I love everyone involved and a small child is in the middle, I have been grieving.

I don't know of any other way to tell it.

The good news is that my youngest sister and I have been calling each other on Sunday evenings for the past 12 weeks while working on a Julia Cameron book called, "The Art of Perserverance." My sister's creative streak is so original and fun that I love listening to her talk about what she's up to.

I wrote, I attempted to walk and make a weekly artist date. But mostly, I wrote. The harp practice has barely been taking place. Too much work to do.

That's the other rotten news. I'm a therapist trying to piecemeal several jobs while developing my private practice.

A job that I picked up this winter for a regular paycheck is making me wonder if it is worth the challenges.

I love the clients. However, working for a county facility that is being used to test the government's public/private initiatives and radically changing the work environment isn't what I bargained for.

The very first week I started work, the local paper ran an article that the local government had put our little assisted living for the poor at the front of their agenda for major changes. In addition to the overwhelming human needs at this place, it has been a challenge to cope with staff upset and worry since I started. Not to mention, my own reaction to the way this is being handled leaves me struggling with the best way to respond.

This past week there has been more about "cutting us loose." They are hiring a new CEO position (at goodness knows how much money), but cutting wages for staff - mostly aides, kitchen and maintenance help. Some will completely lose their jobs and have to reapply for those jobs at lower rates/benefits. These are the people who can least afford this.

I just want to cry. Really, God?! What is wrong with people?

The Board president keeps stating that he was elected to balance the budget and that he's just "a numbers guy." What is missing is the rest of the statement: and I don't care about the human consequences.

My partner reminds me that in this economic environment, one has two choices. I can ride it out or develop an exit strategy.

The problem is that when I returned from a public hearing, one of our aides said that she was disappointed that no one spoke for the assisted living staff. She talked about how they don't feel safe enough or empowered. She reported that staff felt that the board has already made up their minds, so why bother. Yet, she had hoped that one of our senior staff would speak up. She was afraid that they were being forgotten.

There is one more public hearing. Can I collect comments and present them? Should I coach staff on public speaking? Will I still have a job? How can one approach this kind of challenge?

On this Saturday between Good Friday and Easter, I am feeling like Jesus has died, but hasn't been resurrected yet. I'm feeling the hopeless grief of death without renewal. I await the sign of new life.

I'm reminded why the New Testament is called the Good News.