Saturday, September 27, 2008

a BIG year

I'm two days into my new year.  My 35th birthday was Thursday.  Yikes... mid thirties.  But the bigness of the year is not about the bigness of my age, it's about all the major turning points that are up ahead on this road.  This is my last "single" birthday - D and I are getting married this coming spring (still haven't settled on a date).  I'm working full-time at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance as a fellow in oncology chaplaincy.  That means that before the year is out I will have produced a publish-worthy piece of research writing (a LONG one).  D and I are hoping to start a family soon after our wedding.  That is the fulfillment of a great big hope of mine, but it's still scary to think that it might come true THIS year.  We will sell D's condo and buy a house together, hopefully before the wedding.  That will make me a (co) homeowner.  Wedding, writing, kiddo?, home.  WOW.  That's a lots to contain in 365 days... and there's already only 362 left!  Better get off the computer and get back to work.... or maybe take a moment to breathe and pray.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

as the crow flies

I'm still adjusting to my new job at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance.  There's lots to learn.  There are (what seem like) a hundred different computer things; new modes of communication; new faces; a new schedule; two medical facilities; new medical jargon and concepts; and a whole new "outpatient gig".  As if all this newness was not enough... I have to figure out transportation and schedules.  Serving two places is complicated.  Today, I thought I would start and end my day at the UW Medical Center (where our patients go when they need to be in the hospital - and where my office is).  In the morning I took the bus to UW, but then in the midst of the day my plans changed.  Instead of taking our shuttle back to UW at the end of the day, I decided to just walk home from SCCA.  Great!  With my ipod fired up, I headed out.  All was well until it started to pour down rain.  I took off my nice warm jacket (because it is stuffed with down - and feathers without their ducks aren't so waterproof) and stowed it into my bag where it would stay dry.  I was cold, but I have to say, all was still well.  You know those days (or moments) when everything seems to be touched with a golden light?  I was having one of those moments all the way home.  This gilded feeling kept me warm, both in my spirit and body.  When I was halfway home, I noticed a mailbox perched atop a fence in front of a house.  The mailbox had a sign posted on it reading, "a poem for September - take one".  WOW!!!  I smiled as I opened the mailbox and pulled out my poem.  Any of you that know me, know that I love poems and I especially love little surprises.  I tucked the poem into my bag and thought about what it might be.  I thought about how whenever I receive something, it is an invitation to give.  I am pondering how I might create more surprise and delight in the world.  Here is the poem for September from my neighbor.  Dear neighbor... whoever you are... THANK YOU.  As this little crow flew home, sideways in the rain, the distance did seem shorter.

Triolet on the Adage "As the Crow Flies"
- M.J. Iuppa
As the crow flies, sideways, over fields,
The distance shortens, the evening reels - 
Darkness rallies, voices sealed.
As the crow flies sideways, over field
Will he stop short of his address - take shield
In a stand of trees and decry what is real?
As the crow flies, sideways, over fields,
The distance shortens, the evening reels - 

Sunday, September 21, 2008

scenes of the summer

 Here's me and the neph hanging out in his backyard.
Doug and I paddling around in the arboretum.  You'll have to imagine Doug... but I swear he was there too.
Oliver giving a kissy face for the camera.  He's been working on becoming calm and submissive.  Doesn't he look like he's lovin it?!?!
Catching a sunset over Lake Union - aka "where it all went down this morning" according to the champion rower pictured next to me.
ZENO, the wonderdog.  A crochet pup I made for my new friend Parker.
Here's a few images from the summer.  This is what I've been up to - that is, aside from being a resident chaplain in a hospital, which was pretty much the rest of the time.  Events not pictured here:  getting engaged, a visit with Doug's family in Idaho, a visit with my parents in Seattle, hours and hours of writing and reflection for CPE, the beginnings of wedding planning, a rainy 4th of July trip to Bellingham....

Saturday, September 20, 2008

adventures in blogland

Okay... so this is my first post.  I have been reading blogs for about a year now.  I guess you could say I'm fairly addicted.  I read all kinds of things but mostly crafty things, stories of my friends and family, and the adventures of parents, individuals and families as they make their way in the world.  I've seen what support and encouragement these blogs can bring.  I've been envious of those that are gaining in wisdom and clarity through the regular practice of writing and sharing.  And... not too long ago when I ended my regular practice of sharing my own writing (I was a pastor preaching weekly in a congregation), my dad asked me, "What about my subscription?"  I realized that the sharing of writing and reflection contributed to the larger community and to my self.  So here's my contribution to the whole of blogland.  My hope is that it is a way of sharing life together - making it richer, wiser, and tons more fun.