Follow-Up

Nov. 11th, 2008 04:22 pm
neversremedy8: (Speaking with Spirit)
Last night I posted something in a rather narrow filter for only specific people to read about my feelings of inadequacy in various parts of my life. Today's post is was an evolution from the day before, all part of the process. I then responded to the comment on last night's post that I couldn't find the words for at that point. That comment seems like an important enough follow-up to the changes in myself that it deserves its own post. (Names eradicated to protect the successful.)
You didn't make me feel bad. I made myself feel bad by measuring myself against someone else. Please don't censor your sharing, it does help me more than I can say. If I see myself reflected in your words and find my reflection inadquate, it is not in any way your doing.

Recently I have reconnected with people of my past. G. is a successful actress and evey playwright (she just had a tour of her play), B. is now a man and a successful writer of erotic non-fiction, V. lived out her dream of being a fashion model and is now a rather successful photographer. And now you've made a major change in your life where you've followed the knowledge of exactly what you needed to do and went out to do it. Your (ally'all's) experiences are inspirational.

I just look at all of what each of you have achieved, and I feel that I don't have the same level of success. I may blame my choice to have a child young, or my procrastination, but I think a lot of it has to do with not being ready to accept my "good work" in this world. I think I don't see myself as successful, because I don't have the tangible, material success to show for it. I don't have a novel published, I didn't explore my acting abilities (assuming I really had any talent other than an early exploration into it), and I'm not living exactly they way I wished to be (not that I think anyone is necessarily living exactly the way you wish, but I mean to say that there is a great deal of resonance in each of your environments with who you are and what you do).

But I'm starting to wonder if my success is in claiming my good work, in realizing what I need to do and pursuing it. I got into a college pretty much on my essay alone--a college that rejected me out of high school despite my grades and extracurricular activities. Maybe they knew then what I didn't know: that I wasn't ready yet. Getting into university without having to work an outside job is a huge success, even if it's not as tangible as a published book or the royalties that come with it. Being aware of my flaws and working to change my behavior, a long process indeed, is a success of mine. I think I often feel like a failure in these areas because I want everything NOW and I want to be able to hold my success in my hands, not just have some abstract idea of achievement. You know?

Yes, you know.

I love you. Don't blame yourself or use this to censor your words. Be well.
And then there's something I can post later that I wrote about the very basic needs I have in seeing my own self-worth. I'll post it later, even if y'all're tired of reading my "oh-so-amazing-inner-revelations." ;)

Oh and tonight: Repo! The Genetic Opera Aren't I lucky? Ana thinks I am, and she backed it up with examples. Very cute examples. ^_^
neversremedy8: (In the Looking Glass)
It took me two and a half hours to open and close code the interview transcriptions from my conversations with my great aunt Alice. While I did it, I used my TA's suggestion of semantic fields to help me organize certain categories on which I wish to focus for my 5-8 page thesis/ethnography. My thesis paragraph and concept paragraph are both due on Friday. This procedure was totally worth it. No matter what thesis I choose (and I have not yet found the right words to frame my thesis), I have all of the data I need to back up the claims I might make. This is huge to me. I feel very reflective of my own values and views of myself in this light--like I'm more aware of why I have this view of myself that I'm not good at constructing sound arguments, and it stems from Rockie's constant demands to know where I came up with certain ideas, this need for me to always cite my sources, even in casual conversations. Now I have all of my sources cited for this paper, and all I need to do is construct an argument and fill in the pieces with the data I collected. I've never really felt I could do such a thing competently. Even my paper on Sunday, while I had reems of notes on my readings, didn't feel very sound, in part because I didn't give myself enough time to reflect.

Ana's teacher and I had our conference yesterday afternoon and discussed Ana's lack of reflection in her reading. I realized I did something similar, for although I can glean quite a bit of information from a reading, I don't usually dig very deeply into it. I've gotten by most of my life on being able to write bullshit and getting an A on it, because even my casual perusal was usually analytical enough for the average human. Now I have a chance to prove to myself that with a combination of passion, reflection, and serious delving into the data provided, I can create a valid, deep, structure argument. A sound one. Just this morning, I ran into Marco, one of the dads at Giddens and he mentioned needing to write today. I inquired into his project, and he said his "fall project" was looking at the food consumed during year 1 BC. I had a mock conversation with him in my head about how I'd never be able to handle writing non-fiction because I'm not good at backing up my arguments and I didn't want to publish three hundred pages of bullshit. At least with fiction, I can create a universe in which my arguments are always sound and everything works to my rules--and let's not forget the use of poetic language that is often found lacking in historical non-fiction. Anyway ...

I've been rather stressed... )

And the funniest part is, I now have the budding skills of an ethnographer and could print out all that I just wrote about my experiences today, open code each line, create semantic fields, and go back to close code everything in search of points to back up any themes I might wish to focus on. I could gain greater insight into my own views of self, health/sickness, values, and cultural beliefs. Ha! No matter the grades I get, this is the type of learning I was looking for when I returned to college. Gaining more of the skills I feel I need to be a whole, well-rounded human being. I could even manage to analyze my language for patterns in use and how they might connect to cultural contexts.

Oh, and did I mention that my attempts at begging worked? The prof for the BIO-ANTH 477 class, which requires a pre-req in BIO A 201, which I don't yet have, gave me the add codes anyway. I'll get to take a class on viewing human gender evolution in a variety of cultures. Yippee!

Also, yesterday, I sat down and brainstormed the ideas of what my values are for education on becoming a whole human being. I told Ana what I was about, and backed it up by saying, "and you know that these are my values, mommy doesn't actually possess all of these ... yet."

I began with the quote:
A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.

-Robert A. Heinlein
Emphasis mine for all things I have thus accomplished. I would add a few things to that (e.g. birth a baby), but the concept is what interested me most. That to be whole, one must have exposure to and experience in the basics of a broad range of topics. I told Ana I would type up my ideas later and formulate them into something more eloquent. I asked her if she'd like to read it when I was finished, and she nodded her head adamantly. (I know I did take a look at educational goals I would have for a school if I designed one, but they looked more at classes, and I realized that what I really should like at for my expectations of self, daughter, and future projects, is not a range of classes, but a range of values that could be achieved by a combination of classes, experiences, and other elements.)

At some point I also need to take another look at the recent death and death-related experiences I've had in the last year. I think Ana needs more coping skills offered to her as well, since her main one currently seems to be to ignore the world and plunge into computers and video games. But that's an entirely different post.

I'm out of time now. I need to go get Ana. With my short amount of time left, I could read more of the Hmong book, write up notes for the bio-med timeline I have due on Friday, or write notes for preparing my thesis. I think I've already ruled out reading, because I can do that any time. Note writing seems like a good idea, since I'm so clear and organized in my thoughts right now.

Whatever you take from this, please remember to always take breaks when you feel yourself overwhelmed. Real breaks aren't escapist, they are the exact opposite. Real breaks bring you back into your body and recenter your being on all levels. Find your path to achieving this when you need to. Love to all. Be well.
neversremedy8: (Tea and Rain)
Ana's speech difficulties are 1) not my fault (huge weight lifted off of my shoulders that I didn't know was there) and 2) are not caused by any issues with the brain. She's fucking brilliant. I wish I could have recorded her responses. Even the evaluator was significantly impressed, and she meets hundreds of children every month. There were times when Ana answered the evaluator before she'd finished asking the question, she also just figured out what was expected of her without being asked and did it. Eventually she realized fully why the evaluator was writing her responses down and when she did it, and it caused her to fidget and get nervous. Her brow furrowed and she looked resentful of having her mistakes written down. But she still had fun with asking "why" questions and coming up with stories for pictures, even though she was just required to either point to things in a certain sequence or repeat/say words based on the pictures (or repeat parts of stories).

So what's wrong? Her hearing is fine, she has "excellent teeth" and comprehends fully what is around her(she is exceptionally observant, and I can finally see it and so many other attributes now that I've taken myself out of the situation and been able to observe her without interacting). The problem lies primarily in her adenoids. She is able to articulate mentally what she wants to say, she understands the language she wishes to use, but when her brain tells her mouth/voice/et al to operate and create those words, it gets cut up and comes out sounding rough and inarticulate. The constant congested sound quality of her voice is also caused by these enlarged adenoids, and it's directly affecting her self confidence and also causes her to fidget and seem unable to focus. She's so nervous and frustrated all the time!

The evaluator said that speech therapy is in order. Ana's primary problems are with articulation (because of the adenoids) and sentence structure, also partly due to the adenoids. There was a scientific term used to describe her condition, but since it was said only once, not familiar to me, and wasn't written down, I can't tell you what it is yet. I'll call them tomorrow when they're open again to get more inforamtion--we were there for two hours, so everyone else had left and closed the center down while we were still in the evaluation rooms (I was with the evalutor's trainee behind a two-way mirror).

Ana had both of us laughing in that back room, and the evaluator even said she was trying VERY hard to not laugh at some points. :) They commented on her beauty and her high intelligence, and I told Ana how proud I was of her. Some of the stuff Ana came up with just amazed me! I couldn't believe how inquisitive, observant, intelligent, intuitive, clever, and cunning she is. I knew she was smart, but there have been times when it seemed like there was nothing going on, when really it's simply a matter of it being too frustrating for her to speak because of this disconnection between brain and voice. She told the evaluator that some of the words for the pictures were "too hard" to say. She said she knew what they were, but "it's hard for me" she explained. *sighs* Poor thing. When she was misunderstood at one point, she refused to repeat what she originally used as a description and tried another way of identifying an object in the room--at first she'd said something like "brown-dog-box" but it came out garbled, and so she said, "that thing with the white handle."

Examples: Ana also spent extensive time coming up with--unnecessarily, but enjoyed by all--questions and stories about the pictures she was seeing, and explaining what she knew about certain items on the cards. Like why roses have thorns, and such. When she was asked to point to "some tigers" in a zoo picture, Ana pointed to one, and the evaluator turned the page. Ana stopped her and corrected herself, saying, "one is not 'some.'" The eval. asked if she wanted her to redo it, and so Ana pointed to two of the three tigers and said, "that is 'some.'" During one section she was required to repeat portions of a story she was listening to, mostly the dialogue at the end of each page, and not only did she do as well as she could (with her usual speech problems in tow), but she mimicked the eval's tone of voice and inflection on each word. So impressed, and I told her as much when we left.

So, the brain is healthy. Everything else can be overcome.

* * * * *


I need to get to bed, but I've been procrastinating terribly. Despite having far more pressing matters on my to do list, I'm going through my LJ archives and tagging them. To make matters worse, I ran across this link: join my procrastination hell.

I hope my child gets sent home for something like this:
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United Federation of Planets, and to the galaxy for which it stands, one universe, under everybody, with liberty and justice for all species. (see link for the entire story) And yes, we should all buy the t-shirt. Ana should have one in her size. Damnit. I need a job. Or a sugar daddy. Or lottery winnings (it would help if I bought a ticket). Or something.

Oh, and I have 11 new icons. That means I had to delete 11 former icons, all of which I loved to have. *sighs* Change is hard. Even when it's just LJ icons or cut hair or my child going to Kindergarten. Wait. Scratch that last one. That one's big. May she always find creative ways to rebel and subvert the system and still come out with a decent education!

And now, a poll to apologize for the long, long, long post without a cut:


[Poll #518453]

I apologize now should anything be misspelled. For truly I am tired. Very tired. Small 'mount of depression seeping into my veins. A good night's rest may help. Love, hugs, and kisses to all. Especially those who are dearest to me. I am blessed, I'm just not very happy with the way I'm handling my life. Love, love, love.

Oh, and my favorite (calm/quiet) Beatles song: Dear Prudence (although there are many tied for runner-up)
neversremedy8: (Default)
It's amazing to read what I wrote only yesterday. I was so frantic, but today's been so wonderful. The snow is perfect, and everything has gone so well for me. I only hope that Ana will be as happy tonight as I have all day. I have to go pick her up soon, but briefly I shall say this:

-I did everything on my list yesterday (inculding paint my room)
-Sera called last night and we talked... I stayed within my own power, and yet was able to still be affectionate.
-I did all but 1 thing on my list today (and that had a question mark by it)
-I was REQUIRED to go shopping for clothes and beauty products this morning
-I had an eye exam and got all of the information I need on getting my glasses quickly
-Sera and I talked about getting together Thursday and discussing the parenting plan
-I met lots of nice people along the way, and everything just seems to have worked out well today!

Hugs to all, would like to say more now, but... ::sighs:: Must be off... of course, I get to snuggle my little one (whether she likes it or not), YAY!!!! ::bounces::

Jambalaya for dinner tonight... sushi tomorrow. Mmmmmm.....

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