Sunday, July 02, 2006

from a long silence

she emerges.

it's the second day of july, which means there are a mere 25 days until my birthday. i hope you have been saving money for a care package. if you haven't, rest easy, there is still time.

my goals are not going THAT great -- CPE is proving more exhausting than previously thought. more exhausting is that i can't say anything about it -- rules and confidentiality and such -- but i'm bursting with stories.

this much i can tell you -- i spend my mornings singing to babies (who can't escape!) and talking with children being "assessed." the afternoons i stand awkwardly in doorways, visit in silence or incessant chatter or easy conversation. i try to listen with a "third ear" and hear with the heart of the spirit -- sometimes it works and i feel lifted and sometimes i exit as awkwardly as i entered, feeling disconnected and unaccomplished. the rest of my time we dissect these feelings of disconnect or accomplishment, we investigate in an atmosphere of religious openness where God is in all of it.

two things i like especially: i like having boundaries for ministry. i like realizing that CPE is just as much about learning about me as it is about ministering to patients. i like knowing that i have to, as one chaplain said, "hold the patients loosely," it keeps me aware of my own limitations.

i like the ecumenical and interfaith environment. there are 3 catholics, 4 protestants (Methodist, UCC, Episcopalian, and me), and 3 nonChristians (Jewish, UU, and undeclared, so to speak). growing up, i encountered few people who didn't fall into three categories for me: those who believed similarly to me, or those who didn't really believe, or those whose thoughts i never knew because they didn't talk about it. i appreciate talking to others who are passionate and invested, all of us hanging on to pieces of the thing that is Truth.

but, i have taken no pictures.
i stopped with the verses at my last on call (but will start again tonight)
exercise is still limited to walks to and from the T, walks up and down the hill to the children's hospital, opting for stairs at the hospital instead of elevator (it's something, but i can't really count it, because i'm not really CHOOSING it)
i finally finished Blindness by Jose Saramago, which i loved and would highly recommend. i may not have finished it in a week, but i read it pretty steadily, which is something.
i am still studiously ignoring thinking about my thesis.

i'll be back sooner next time.