25 July 2010

sunday morning

this past week I have been on an emotional roller coaster-mostly going down hill.  I am not sure why-but I am sure that was a combination of the stress of my living situation, hitting a wall with my final project, missing my home people and physical exhaustion.  On Wednesday, I woke up and felt like I was going to pass out, so I went back to sleep and didn't wake up until 11:30.  It was clear that I needed to catch up with my rest, although the remainder of the week I was still exhausted and emotional.  Friday night was an ice cream mixer in the park and my "therapy" puppy Bailey was there to help ease my pain.  30 minutes of rough playing with a 5 month old boxer did wonders for my mood- and helped to remind me that, in the present moment, I am fine.

I know that when I am feeling disconnected from people,  feeling insecure, and comparing myself to others-that I need to step back and take better care of myself.  For me, that means changing what I can change.  I know that my body and my soul has been missing my daily 5 mile walks, so last night I hiked the "M", and today I have already walked into town and back.  Getting a good physical workout every day will do wonders for me.  I know that.  It felt wonderful to walk! I may try to get a bike to ride for the next three weeks, until Kellie leaves and I buy hers.   I am also working on changing my housing situation-and have full faith that all will work out the way it is meant to be. 

Although I am not bonding with many people at school, there are great people to hang out with and that will be enough for me.  I need to remember to keep my eye on my goals:  to learn as much technical knowledge as I can here, perfect my photography skills and get on the road to becoming the best photographer I can possibility become.  The gravy will be developing relationships that I can carry with me into my life as I move forward.

It is so beautiful here!

21 July 2010

Montana, like every state in the union, has an enormous problem with meth.  It is cheap to make, highly addictive and readily available.  There are signs everywhere, meant to discourage people from taking the first hit of meth.  I found this hand painted sign on Higgins in downtown Missoula.

I love the 90 minute hike on Waterworks Hill.  When I reach the top, and am facing east, I can see the Rattlesnake, and it is so very peaceful. 

19 July 2010

another monday morning

the time is flying by at such a rapid pace that I can hardly catch my breathe.  the days flow into weeks and suddenly it is July 19th and I have been away from home for 8 weeks.  how is that possible?

yesterday i had more fun than i have had in a long time.  most of group a (becky, becks, roxie, angie, mike, joan, chance,laura & lauren) and i went rafting down the clark river on pool mattresses.  it was an amazing site-brightly colored floats & a motley crew, all holding on to each other for most of the 3 hours, floating on the river.  my float was so slippery that i got a great upper body workout just trying to stay on it.

water, sun and laughter-is there anything better?  photos are coming-from 4 waterproof, disposable cameras!

sarah & joe

18 July 2010

15 July 2010

Is anyone out there?

14 July 2010

It's a beautiful summer evening in Missoula, and I am sitting in my new favorite cafe called "Break Expresso".  I only recently discovered it when Peter was up visiting me over the fourth of July weekend.  Marcy James from RMSP met Peter and I here to discuss the Advanced Intensive Program and to answer any questions we had about it.  This must also be my lucky spot, as Peter agreed that it would make sense for me to stay through AI (but not one moment later!).

I haven't blogged for awhile, and miss the therapeutic aspect of it. There is so much in my head, that I need to get it out and try to make sense of it all.

The program is going well for me, although there are many days (hours, minutes, seconds) where I feel frustrated, lost and wonder what the hell I am doing here.  The incredible about of information that I get on a daily basis makes it impossible to properly digest and process into my life in any coherent manner.  So, I take notes and try to be as present as possible and hope that I am not missing anything critical.  The level of instruction is very high, although there are a couple of teachers who aren't able to teach the material as well as I want them to do.  I wonder if others are feeling the same way?  I have learned more in the past 6 weeks than I have in any other point in my life.  And, surprisingly, my brain hasn't completely forgotten how to think!

Am I making progress with my photography?  I know I am, and I also know that there is still so much more to learn.  I have 4 more weeks of SI and then 2 professional studies classes.  I am flying home for a few days and then coming back for AI.  These 2 programs together will give me most of what I need to successfully move forward and start my career as a working photographer.  The where and how are yet to reveal themselves.  Home just in time for my 55th birthday.  Incredible.

I am feeling some stress.  The group that I have been put into is full of kids and it is getting to me.  They are all wonderful people, but there is a particular energy that accompanies them that is frenetic and disruptive to me and a couple of the other people in the group.  The incessant chattering and laughing and drama is zapping my energy and at times it is next to impossible to concentate in lab.  I have an appointment with the head of the program tomorrow at 1pm, with hopes that I can just ease on over to group A without an fuss.  I'll will be praying for guidance to say the right things tomorrow and, whatever the outcome, I know that I have tried to change it.

It is interesting to encounter situations like these in my life.  Do I live such a quiet and simple life that I have virtually eliminated conflicts?  Well, I no longer have people with unpredicable behaviour in my life anymore.  Emily is gone.  My dad is gone.  I have fabulous, mentally healthy people around me-most of whom do not play games or require "special" handling.  I crafted my world and don't want to have to deal with a lot of crap from people who are stuck in the drama of their lives..  I want to be real in the world and have real people with me on my journey.

Now that I am staying in Missoula for 3 more months, I need to organize my time better so that I can get back until a mentally and physicaly heathy routine.  That means:  3-4 days of exercise per week; at least 1 meeting a week; talking to PB every day, Judy a couple of times a week, and staying more in touch with other friends as well.  It will make me feel much more connected to be world and less alone.  On a positive note, I have been eating well.  I do miss Peter's wonderful dinners, but I manage to eat well on my own and not eat too many sweets.

13 July 2010

12 July 2010

Monday AM in Missoula

Today is a big day for us.  This morning our mid term slide shows are due & we get to watch them in front of our groups.  Neil and Tony will be critiquing them.  I feel confident that we have all done a wonderful job on our shows and that the morning will be a resounding success!  It is difficult to image that we only have about four weeks left of SI; sometimes I feel as if I just arrived and that I still have so much to learn (which I do).  I am incredibly grateful that Peter is supportive of me staying to complete the entire program-knowing how stretched he is juggling work, choir and the dogs.   He is quite a guy!

Day 192: