Sunday, April 15, 2012

Last (first) Class

How crazy is it that I would end my last (first) class of grad school doing a show n' tell  of my collage journals?  While that should sound really cool, like this really must be the perfect school for me, I didn't really care to spend 8 hours of my Saturday hearing my classmates talk about their life goals, values, favorite animals, how they dislike cheese and why they chose to put the picture of their dead childhood cat in the upper right corner of their collage.  I'm so mean.  But, dude, I'm not getting paid to listen to their life story - I'm actually PAYING to listen to it ($1,590 to be exact). 

Seriously.  This class is called "Skills for Helping Professionals".  And while I got a shit ton out of the assignments themselves (especially the therapy sessions, the papers and the miracle worker professor - more on her later), the way we spent our time in class was infuriating for me.  Yes, it was one big fat unfulfilled (but not unrealistic) expectation.  One would think - or at least I did - that we might do such things during class like practice the helping skills we are reading about.  Perhaps we might write the methodologies up on the board and discuss.  But no. The first day of class we spent the entire class - like the whole damn Saturday - on introductions.  And if you know me, you know that I only spend my time with people that I enjoy and doing things that I want to do.  And I didn't want to know these people.  No offense, but if I did want to know these people on a deep level, I would go away on a women's retreat with them.  I would join a women's (and one man) group.  But I came there to learn some stuff - some good stuff worth $1,590.  

So by the end of the yesterday I was about to explode.  The thing is, if it was more of an assignment sharing about what you had learned about yourself this semester, or some kind of transformational, rich and deep question, maybe I would have been more engaged.  But I may not ever see these people again.  What is the value to me, as a masters level student, to hear about how much they respect their best friend for losing 90 pounds?  If my professor ever read this post, surely I would  flunk, not just because I'm being a judgmental bitch but because I clearly missed the point of the assignment.

When I set out to finish this last piece of homework, I tore out pictures and they laid in a pile on my coffee table all week.  I couldn't do it.  I couldn't make a collage answering the twenty questions.  That would take me a year.  Often just one collage page takes me several weeks to finish.  Thankfully my godsend classmate and homework buddy suggested that I use my existing collage book.  Brilliant!  That was fun to share them with the outside world, even though it made my feet sweat to have them outside of my house, but it didn't take the edge off my annoyance.   Maybe I should have started this post admitting that I had a bit of a hangover and was PMS yesterday?  

Okay, now I shall seek redemption and tell you what I did get out of class - something far more valuable than $1,590.  Let me introduce you to my future mentor, a Master, and I mean MASTER, Depth Psychologist, who taught the class.  First of all, she takes a group of women down to Peru every year:

Celebration of the Sacred Feminine:
A Magical Journey to Mystical Peru 

Join us on a journey of serenity to the ancient and mysterious land of Peru. Step out of yourself and enter the cradle of unique cultural and spiritual traditions. Participate in authentic rituals, healing ceremonies, and guided holistic journeys.

Hi. Can I be you?  This is a woman who is currently reading Clarissa Pinkola Estes' latest book titled Untie the Strong Woman;  Blessing Mother's Immaculate Love for the Wild Soul".  The words that fall out of her mouth resonate with my heart.  She strikes a chord with me.  What I know to be true, and center my life around, are things she talks about constantly:

Self-Care and Self-Love
Women - we are so hard on ourselves - why and stop that!
Boundaries, ask for what you want
Trusting your intuition
Sacred space
Tending to another
The value of Silence
Dreams, dreams, dreams
The Shadow!  Darkness!
Grief and Loss
How disconnected our culture is and how much we need to be seen

Let me say it again - she is a Master.  I bow to you, respecting who you are in the world and am humbled by your acceptance of human beings. I love the way she gracefully and gently dances with the Soul.  I will never forget her, ever ever ever.  I drank in her every gesture, her presence.  Her Being.  Please forgive my harsh critique of your class and know that someday I may just understand the wisdom of caring about my classmates!  

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