Thursday, July 2, 2009

Over due update! Lots of exciting news!

So much has happened. I was offered the position at Las Encinas and will start on July 13th! I feel really ready for this change. It was really wonderful to be able to go to my graduation ceremony on Sunday 6/28/09 and be able to greet/hug my teachers letting them know that I am going to be putting what I learned and worked for to practice. It will be hard to leave my current position. The work itself is often monotonous and unchallenging but putting a smile on a patient's face, consoling a family member, or finding that solution that helps the team and puts a patient at ease has been so rewarding. There is also the comfort of knowing what to expect. My day at work is broken down in comfortable repetitive activities. In the morning there is the slow step into the day with drinking coffee, eating breakfast, checking messages, etc. The same song comes on every morning around 10am. Its this disco fever song or something. That sort of marks that the day has begun and gets us busy. By 11 I have done some tasks and am gettign ready to go over to assist with the lunch program, meaning I help/visit with patients during lunch. I have my lunch and then the afternoon crawls on. I might write some notes, make some calls, spend time with patients/families, surf the web a bit. Its comfortable and generally unstressful. I know the team so well and how they will react to something I say. Although comfortable I feel myself screaming inside at times when things feel so repetitive. There is little change in the patients on my unit. This will be a far cry from my new job that will be nonstop running around from the sound of things.

So besides my new job, I just graduated formally. It was a really beautiful ceremony. I have been officially graudated with my masters in clinical psychology since the end of December but it is only now that it really feels final. It was an extremely hot day on Sunday, so the thought of downing a thick black robe with a velvet long cover did not sound so apealing. Luckily the ceremony was inside at the Roce Hall at UCLA, which was air conditioned. Portia picked me up and we drove excitedly to UCLA. It took us awhile to get situated and find where to park. We went in and met fellow students that we would graduate with. I got my card which said Theresa Collins Journeau. I had them change it to Theresa Collins but didn't think to change my line up number until later. I changed my line up so I would be with the C's and guess what! I was right next to my close friend Deborah Cluff. She was number 115 and they made me number 115.5. It felt so fitting because Deb and I have gone through this whole process together. There were many weekends when we cried, laughed with each other over material and things that came up at school. We dug in our souls during our master's program. During that process we had to bare our souls to each other. I feel as if I bared my soul the most with Deb as she did with me. My master's program has forever changed me for the better. It is one of the best things that I have done for myself and for others. It feels so amazing to know I am on the right path. Wow ok I just went on a tangent. Well regardless to say it was amazing to stand next to Deborah during the whole ceremony. I spotted my husband, good friend and neighbor Ginger, and our friends Meg and Chris in the audience. I had my own cheering section and it made up the fact that my parents couldn't be there. It was a fairly long ceremony. I'm sure much more so for those that weren't students. The speeches were very powerful and found myself tearing a bit. The room was so energized with feelings of joy and accomplishment! Finally it came time for us to go up and get our diploma covers, shake the president's hand, and get our pictures taken. It happened soooo fast. Deborah crossed the stage as I handed my card to the announcer. I walked as they called my name, shook hands with the president, got a hug from the Chair of the Psychology Dept, got my picture taken, and then got hugs from all of my teachers. I loved that part. Just falling into a pit of love and pride from my teachers who were my colleagues, gurus, confidants, etc. during this whole process. I really feel as if I could go to them when I need help in my career and they would be there for me. I am so blessed that I found Antioch. After the president formally recognized our degrees. We stood as he spoke and that confirmation spoken outloud unlocked something for me. I feel as if that moment and that moment among my teachers was the moment that this all felt real to me. I really did this and I am really going on to something greater. After we exited we had a nice after party on the patio. It was quite crowded and difficult to get around but got flowers from my friends Jess and Whitney who were there for Deb and I. I got some refreshments and talked to teachers and friends. Afterwards Brian, Ginger, Meg and Chris, and I celebrated at El Torito. I of course celebrated with some tequila aka huge rasberry margarita that was so yummy. Got these amazing sizzling enchiladas which is kind of a mix between fajitas and enchiladas. Sooo good. Ginger also gave me a certificate to get a massage. So excited, its really close by to our place and the name of the massage is the Serenity Massage. So perfect. I think I will try to get it done before my new job starts. oooh prob should get it before my tattoo on the 12th. Anyway that's enough for now. I'll write a new entry for my visit with the fam this past week and a half.

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