Tuesday, May 31, 2011


Sometimes I find myself just wanting to say my brother's name out loud—Grant, Granty, Grant Marcus

Sometimes I miss him something fierce. His skinny long legs, his never ending questions, his annoying bugging, and his sweet, sweet hugs

Sometimes I catch myself thinking of how old he would be today and try as I might I can't picture him. I can only see him as a scrawny 15 year old boy

Sometimes I want to tell someone about him just to talk about him—to acknowledge his existence, but how do you do that. How do you talk to someone about that

Sometimes I hear a song, watch a movie, see a boy, and it almost feels like the wind is being knocked out of my chest. I am surprised at how fast I am back laughing with Grant or watching him stand like a flamingo in front of the TV

Always I am grateful he is my brother for eternity

Wind & The Sacred Wind

I spend the last 4 days living in the Wilderness. I was a Trail Walker and I was on a Rabbit Stick Walking with Anasazi. It was amazing! It was hot, cold, and nats ate us alive. We hiked, cooked food off a propane stove, and slept on the ground. Many things happened that just can't be explained but there was one thing I would like to share.

At Anasazi we talk about something called the Sacred Wind or in other words you may call it the Spirit. I love talking about, listening to, and learning from the Sacred Wind.

This week out in the desert there were SO MANY nats out it was crazy beans. I mean it when I say that we were eaten alive. I came home with about 75 nat bites all in the area of about 3 inches from my wrists up, a few on my face, about 15 on my neck and collar bone area, and a few more on my legs. This is minimum compared to most. I wore a light bright green scarf around my face shoulders and neck, sort of like a hijab, almost every minute. It was hot and sometimes hard to breath but I am so glad b/c it really saved me. some of the TW were just covered in nat bites, some had swollen eyes, and they looked like they had either super bad acne or chicken pox.

One night there was this amazing wind that came through my camp throughout the night and it was so amazing and needed. Every time the wind would blow through our camp it would take the nats with it. So I would pray that the wind would come and give us some reprieve. As I was praying and hoping for the wind to come I couldn't help compare it to the Sacred Wind.

When I feel the spirit or when it touches my heart it is such a reprieve, it brings peace and direction in my life. It also helps me to steer clear of the nats. As I sat there feeling the wind on my hot itchy skin I was so grateful. I was grateful for the cool wind and for the gift of the Sacred Wind in my life.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

I LOVE my job!

My amazing sister, Chelsea, recently wrote a great blog about jobs. She writes about her idea of a "Utopian ideology" where everyone would be able to work at jobs they love and are passionate about. Not only would they get to work at these jobs but they would get paid and love what they do.

Being a social worker I can't tell you how many times people have said to me, "I am so glad you do what you do because..." then they say things like "I could never do that", or "you really don't get paid enough" or "I couldn't do it because I need to make more money." I don't spend too much time thinking about how little money I make since I knew what I was getting myself into.

However, I do spend a LOT of time trying to figure out why there is so much drama, red tape, bureaucracy, and incompetent people. I can't understand why some programs are run so ineffectual. When I'm in a job like this I can't help but think—sometimes—about how little I get paid to jump through hoops.

Then I come across a job like being a Shadow at Anasazi and I can't imagine myself doing anything else. I absolutely LOVE my job. I love every annoying aspect of the red tape, the training, the lack of space, the new people, figuring out the computers, phones, etc. I love the monotony of policies and procedures, trying to figure out where I fit in in the big non-profit, and the fact that I will, yet again, make little to no money.

I find myself over and over again thinking...I am actually getting paid to:
  • walk in the wilderness
  • learn to survive primitively
  • have an outdoor office where I sit on a blanket and do a session with an adolescent
  • spend the entire day sharing "seeds of greatness" (strengths) with adolescents
  • work with amazing co-workers who are passionate about the outdoors, living in a way that is an example to youth, and come from amazing backgrounds with even more amazing stories to tell
  • be part of an amazing legacy
  • and so much more...
Only when I realize I need to pay bills or I need to fill my gas tank do I stop to remember that I am barely making ends meet. I can handle this though b/c the pay off for having a job that I adore, and feel like is home, makes up the difference.

And so as I embark on this new adventure I just wanted to say that I am truly grateful for my new job, the journey it has taken me to get here, and for the lessons I am learning and will continue to learn.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Burn The Ships

Tomorrow I start a new job! I am really nervous b/c the training for this job takes me out in the field trail walking for multiple days in a row w/ really nothing but my shirt of my back. Part of me is prepared (remember my summer job on the Apache Reservation) and excited and the other part of me is nervous and concerned (I think I may be a bit to old for this??).

Taking this summer job has been a step of faith for me. Yesterday was my last day at the job I've been working at for the past year. I have known for a while that I need a new job, a more challenging situation, and a job that would pay me more money. I have been looking for a clinical job for over a year now. Things just haven't worked out.

Many times I have been tempted to just forget the whole social work thing and just find another job that is closer to where I live and pays more money. But then I think of the 2 years I spent on my Masters degree, all the opportunities that have led me to where I am, and most importantly how much I love being a clinician with adolescents.

So I made a decision and I decided to "burn the ships" and forge ahead. In his book, Leadership, Sterling R. Sill talks about the idea of burning ships. He writes,
When Caesar went to capture Britain, he first landed him men and then unloaded his supplies. Then in the night he sent out men and burned the ships in which they had come. Then death was the only Roman alternative to victory. Under such circumstances most men fight with a vigor that never knows defeat.
I want to be a great therapist so I can't settle for some job that doesn't utilize my abilities or where there is not room to grow or progress. If that means I quit a full time job, with benefits, and security to go be a clinician with the same pay, no benefits, and only for the summer—then so be it. I choose to move forward and burn the ships. There is no way for me to go back now all I can do is move forward.

I am nervous and excited to begin this new adventure with the Anasazi Foundation and have faith that when the summer is over things will work out the way they should!