Archives For Spirit

Writing comments to my own posts on Facebook is one of the ways that I stay sane. Thanks for being privy once again to the meanderings of my mind, as I seemingly trace my routes from graduate school, back to junior college, and more, with the point being that once anything seemed to start becoming reality in my life, every event has some sort of event horizon, after which I find myself saying, “It all happened so fast.”

My muse:

age fram

My FB Comments:

Choice Theory: “But still, 14 is all that you can be”…. said to me from Dr. Palmatier, as he echoed the words of his beloved colleague, Glasser (this intervention really put some wayward teen in their place, at one point).

I got straight A’s my first semester at USF (MA Counseling), and he still kicked about ten of us out of the program. He was a most strange former marine + all around whackadoo. I challenged him to an exception re: value of behavior modification over choice theory with autistic adults.

Immediately after stating we would never find an exception to choice theory in the classroom, he had to admit that I found one.

Oh, well. I bounced right into the MSW program the next semester, as they were a semester behind. That’s another scandal: “It would be unethical for me to consider your application at this time. However, if you can get all of your paperwork here in ten days, you are in”). We fired HIM after the first year of three.

Then on to a second post, that I started, myself, because my comments were being truncated from the above post:

The first warning signs that I might be getting into something unethical in graduate school, was my strangely worded pre-acceptance letter… They were a semester behind, and I had missed the application date by about a month:

“It would be unethical for me to consider your application at this time. However, if you can get all of your paperwork here in ten days…”). Lots of hustle, but a piece of cake.

We fired HIM after the first year of three.

It’s how I ended up with the Donna of professors… she was an amazingly intelligent, gifted, and beautiful African-American woman… she became the coordinator.

She kept it real. Such as, if you find yourself thinking about how hot your client is, you need to do the right thing and tell them what is going on, refer them out, and discuss it in your marriage, if need be. Or not. I said she was intelligent. lol

She was the first person who pointed out to me that it’s not just white people afraid of “black crime”… everybody who lives in their own ‘hood lives with this fear. She informed us of white privilege in a big way.

White privilege was an answer on an essay, and I illustrated her point by failing to mention it…. also from her: “the minority culture knows more about the dominant culture than the dominant culture knows about itself.”

I unplugged a bit after that one… step 1 away from day to day reality…

The meaning of “white privilege” is part of the fabric of my character. Assimilating this new, obvious truth, was helped along a bit by being able to relate to being part of a minority culture, knowing more about a dominant one: Gay in straight – ville (There is Guerneville, and there is Straightville).

You may not be gay, and you may not be bi, but if you live in Guerneville, your neighbor is likely to be gay, or bi. So, learn how to say no, nicely. And, get used to walking in on some surprising situations. Unlike most of the world, if you are at a party it will not be assumed that you are straight.

Visit during the summer to maximize your effort to get laid vs. getting laid plan.

“You got laid at Lazy Bear weekend? How so easy” … “Uh, I showed up at a BBQ, looking scruffy … the rest was just so fast…”

Put that on a memorial: He said, “The rest was always just too fast”

It started with a look, and the rest is too fast… It started with an ache in my esophagus, and the rest just went so fast…

First I was at the junior college, but the rest went so fast…

There was like 30 minutes of waiting for that shit to work, then the rest went so fast…

I understood these things when I was a child. It feels like a repeat. I just had no idea things would happen so fucking fast!

Were I religious, I could change that last sentence for lent: “I just had no idea things would happen. So, fucking fast!

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While I was not really supposed to be out and about last night, I could not resist the urge to stop by the warming center where I had been working, up until the heart attack. They closed this morning at 8:00 AM, for the year. It has been an incredible experience. I will share some of it, later, provided I can do so in an ethical manner. I was greeting with a wall of love: hugs, kisses, tears, and a home made get well card. People who had left a day early to seek shelter came by just to see me. From my FB post:

The incredible compassion, love, respect, care and concern shown to me tonight by the guests of the warming center was a truly awesome experience. They are moving forward with their lives. Some decided to stay the night in a motel, instead. In between hugs and kisses, “L” called her friends who had left early, to come down and see me. *** I mean, who cares if nobody shows up for my funeral, when so many show up when I am so alive? – After I left, I got a sweet mocha-chocolate tincture, courtesy of mother nature. She also gave me some tea to work on my body at a more systemic level. — straight to me heart. Life is good. I am loved, and being celebrated while I am here. Peace

Anyhow, after leaving there, I was taken to a wonderful new place, where Mother Nature blessed me with her bounty. Straight to my heart and my nerves.

This song was playing in the background, and it seemed quite relevant. More later (hey, I am supposed to be in bed for my “recovery”) … I like this, better. I am getting plenty of rest, and since the death of Donna Summer, it is a great feeling when I can find a song that makes me forget where I am, or speaks to where I am… if even for a moment.

Cheers!

I wrote a letter to you

I almost sent it today
Sometimes it really gets through
Hold on, yeah
For a break

‘Cause it’s midnight on the run
Yeah, yeah, midnight on the run

The comet stares you right in the eye
Sunrise is so far away
My ride on the train has begun
Stow away in a boxcar of guns

‘Cause it’s midnight on the run
Yeah it’s midnight on the run
Yeah, yeah, midnight on the run
Yeah it’s midnight on the run

Love is a hell-hound on the loose
Better put ’em on, your dancing shoes
Yeah he’s coming down after you
Better put ’em on, your dancing shoes
Out in the street the whole night through
So he put ’em on, his dancing shoes
Yeah he’s coming down after you
Better put ’em on, your dancing shoes

Love is a hell-hound on the loose
Better put ’em on, your dancing shoes
Yeah he’s coming down after you
Better put ’em on, your dancing shoes
Out in the street the whole night through
Better put ’em on, your dancing shoes
Yeah he’s coming down after you
Better put ’em on, your dancing shoes

Love is a hell-hound on the loose
Better put ’em on, your dancing shoes
Yeah he’s coming down after you
Better put ’em on, your dancing shoes
Out in the street the whole night through
So he put ’em on, his dancing shoes
Yeah he’s coming down after you
Better put ’em on, your dancing shoes

Synchromysticism is a portmanteau of the words “synchronicity” and “mysticism.”  A Synchronicity  is a coincidence with meaning which is usually far less likely to occur naturally than typical coincidences. An observance of synchronicity is often coupled with a recent moment of personal enlightenment or great insight. A shift in consciousness of perceived reality will usually determine ones ability to see an increased number of synchronicities.

The synchromystic world-view is that every-Thing in the universe is connected. All symbols have multiple layers of information, histories, and interpretations. Given enough time and information, eventually all symbols, themes and ideas will be found to contain information about all the others so that each piece of the puzzle becomes holographic in nature; meaning that by focusing on one idea, all others can potentially be expressed. If one is familiar with the Eastern philosophic idea that “all is One,” then synchromysticism allows a person to prove it for themselves through active involvement with synchronicity not only in the media saturated world around them, but also in their personal lives. Synchromysticism can be used to decode meaning in situations where that meaning may not have been implied or even originally intended. It has also been used by some in an attempt to foresee future events.

Quotes on Synchromysticism

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The Impetus

My first venture in to what I experienced at the time as the great-unknown of the blogosphere came about after waking up one morning with most of my right arm paralyzed, due to a broken neck. The lack of any seeming reason for my neck breaking, and the time I was afforded during a lengthy recovery, provided me with the inspiration to begin several blogs.

Exactly one week ago to the day, after having just re-entered the work force only a few months prior, both my world, and my worldview, were shaken to the core, once again: I had a nasty heart attack. I have a history of working with people who find themselves in life-challenging, and/or life-threatening situations, so I was able to identify what was happening, fairly quickly. Despite efforts by the paramedics to assure me that I was not having a heart attack, I knew better.

One of the things the paramedics said to me was that if I was really having a heart attack, I would know, because I would be on a helicopter, being flown to a hospital for treatment. I was asked a lot of questions about my anxiety levels, and, just as when my neck was broken, and my arm had atrophied to the point of it being visible through layers of clothing, I was told to calm down. Still dizzy from the pain, when they asked me if I really wanted to have someone take a look at things at the hospital, I said, “Yes”.

Within the hour, the local hospital informed me that the data was indeed indicating that I was having a heart attack, and that the REACH helicopter was on its way to fly me to a hospital that specialized in heart care. Shortly after, my heart stopped while they were putting in a stent, during an angioplasty procedure. I woke to my surgeon doing chest compressions on me. After the temporary pacemaker they put in was taken out, the next day, I lost consciousness again, as once more, my heart stopped long enough for me to lose consciousness.

They decided to put in a permanent pacemaker, and the painful procedure was completed, within a short amount of time. Not long after, on the same, day, my heart stopped, again. I did not breathe for 45 seconds. I woke to a team of concerned medical professionals, and instinctively continued to chew the food that I was eating before my heart stopped. A nurse yelled, “Spit it out”! By this point, I was fully conscious, and I knew instantly things were not right. It turned out that the pacemaker was defective. An important lead wire was broken, and it had failed to deliver the life-saving shock to my heart, at the moment when it needed it the most.

The Intent

As noted, I have other blogs. However, it is my intention with this blog to focus more on my personal experience, as well as incorporate my broader range of interests in one place. It may have been short, but technically, I just died three times this last week. Surely, I have more to offer, before death is permanent.

Background:

The following is taken from the “about” section of one of my other blogs, Social Work Unplugged. Feel free to stop by that site, but please know that my intention with this blog is to lean more toward the personal, while attempting to nurture my kinder, gentler qualities. No doubt, I am who I am, and trying to hide the less pleasant aspects of my character would just bring them out in dark ways, so I do not seek to repress parts of my self.

Just look at us. Everything is backwards, everything is upside down. Doctors destroy health, lawyers destroy justice, psychiatrists destroy minds, scientists destroy truth, major media destroys information, religions destroy spirituality and governments destroy freedom.
― Michael Ellner

While the name implies looking at the field of social work from an “unplugged from The Matrix perspective, everything is connected. The field of social work certainly is rife with areas to be explored from an awakened point of view, but to attempt to make this the sole focus does not work and my own awakening process has been far too intense to keep out the personal.

As such, there is both an unplugged point of view that can be taken in regard to social work and the universe at large, as well as my own point of view as someone who worked as a “professional” social worker with an emerging, “awakened” perspective.

After growing up with social services as a part of my early years, I developed both a desire to get in to the field of social work and to do it by treating people with as much dignity as possible.

While I feel I was able to do this to the best of my ability with my clients, after more than two decades it became increasingly difficult to maintain a sunny disposition with my coworkers,  supervisors and the incredibly flawed systems that were providing our salaries.

My first and perhaps most profound experience was at the age of eighteen, when I began working for a residential program for eighteen adults living with a range of disabilities from Down Syndrome and autism to “mental health” issues. Most of them had just been exited from State Hospitals. I learned that regardless of the approach, I had a knack for the work. I was able to run programs that the writer was unable to execute and I was promoted to management when I was twenty.

After four years, I moved to another area. After moving around in miserable retail positions, I was able to get a job with a residential home for adults living with autism. I did this for the six-and-a-half years that it took for me to get my AA in Liberal Arts and my BA in Psychology.

While obtaining my Master’s Degree in Social Work (MSW), I enjoyed a variety of both paid and volunteer positions assisting adults living with developmental disabilities to obtain community employment, as well as provided case management services to people who were homeless and living with mental health issues. The greatest challenge during this time was working as a Substance Abuse Counselor.

Throughout the years I have worked also as a certified nursing assistant, as well as helped out in the family business with a care home for the elderly, while working as an investigator for Adult Protective Services.

There was a time when I was extremely proud of these accomplishments. While I am not ashamed of them, I am surprised by my lack of awareness at the time in regard to how I had been programmed myself to provide services that would assist with programming others.

I did my best within systems that have failure built in to their mission statements, but there are some nights when I cannot sleep – when the faces of those who crossed my path – however long – remind of shortcomings.

After my last job as a case manager for low-income individuals living with HIV and Hep C, I could not stand the assault to my soul any longer. I walked off of my job.

Due to a serious physical injury I have been afforded the luxury of time to reflect on my life and my passions. This blog is both my attempt to continue to effect positive change in the world and to heal: knowledge IS power and I hope to shed light on some areas of concern for vulnerable populations.

I appreciate your company and I look forward to sharing the journey.

Interestingly, when I came home from the hospital, I discovered that February is “Hear Awareness” month. I will start with posts about signs and symptoms of a heart attack, and go forward from there (is there anywhere else one can go, but forward?). I will use this blog to outline my personal experiences, and journal my progress, as well as explore any/all areas of my life, and the world.

Thanks for stopping by, and being a witness to my evolution, and the evolution of this blog, while going through your own.

Troy M. Burnett, MSW

February 28, 2014