Tuesday, November 10, 2009

communication - NOT!

As a social worker I have often explained to people that communication is not what you say but how others interpret what you say. It is so easy to forget that. After all, if I say something I know what I meant to say...so of course, you must know it to. And if we are "family" well - you know me so you have to understand me - and my intentions. Wouldn't it be nice if that were true?

Unfortunately over the last couple of weeks I have seen yet another example of how "Perception is everything." Two of my relatives - who both acknowledge the "facts" of who was doing what and who said what - (and yes, the who said and what was said match) - have radically different views of what was meant by the words that were said. One person is utterly convinced the words were meant in spite or as an embarassment. The other, didn't even realize the words had been seen as hurtful. In fact, that person thought the words would help a the other person avoid an uncomfortable situation.

For weeks hurt feelings have been nursed - anger has flared - and yet, there was no intent to harm or embarass. Others have been pulled in to the situation - and it now seems - there really wasn't a "situation" to begin with.

We so want to believe that misunderstandings are impossible between people who love each other - but the reality is - only God understands any of us perfectly. We must always be willing to step back and take another "listen" to what those around us are saying - or our own preconceptions/misperceptions can and will make us miss the real message.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

I wanna a rock and roll all night...

At 50+ years old - I am pleased to announce that I am now singing with a band. Okay, it isn't a rock band - but it is a band. I'm getting to sing with a contemporary christian group made up peole from and affliated with our church. I am really enjoying the opportunity to sing with some really good musicians, praise God, and worship in some new settings.

I am also enjoying the chance to work with the group on several original songs - which means I also get to make-up parts on the spot.

I haven't had this much fun in years!

This summer - to make it even more special (ugh - bad grammar!) I got to sing with Logan. He plays a really good lead guitar and keyboards.

How many moms can lay claim to being in the same band as their 21 year old?

Anyway, apparently - we are never to old to still dream of being a "rock-star."

Monday, June 01, 2009


Well as usual, I stink at blogging - but every now and then I have something to rattle on about.

It is now June - the month of my birth. Last year was one of those big "0" birthdays...and my friends and co-workers had a great deal of fun creating an event to remember. Of course they also made lots of comments about how I would no longer be able to remember things like that.
At any rate, I have officially decided that this June 4th will be my un-birthday. Having already "celebrated" my 50th year - I have decided to start going back in time - hence - the "un-birthday." I feel fairly certain that I will not have to worry about reaching zero and having to start all over - but if that should happen - well, I'll just have to wait and see. Of course, an un-birthday requires an un-birthday cake - which is a good idea since I need to "un"-do some of the calories and pounds I've put on over the 50 previous years. And I certainly have more than enough stuff - so maybe I will give "un-birthday " presents - and clean out my closets, shelves, and bookcases.

Anyway, I hope you will all celebrate my un-birthday with me!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A day at the office

Where I work we have a lot of clients who are on psychotropic medications. These medications and their effectiveness have to be reviewed periodically - every three months or when there are "problems." Today was PDR (Psychotropic drug review). Sometimes, PDR is short and sweet - everyone's doing well, no medication changes, everyone is happy. Today was not one of those days.
First, the review was long (about 40 clients to be seen). Several of these had been added to the schedule because they were having problems. This can be somewhat taxing for everyone involved. Fortunately, we often have some "comic relief" to get us through.

Without revealing anything about the actual people involved, here are some examples of how my day went. One client was quite excitedly telling us that her family were indians from Tennessee. When asked what tribe - she very slowly and clearly stated "c-o-l-d-b-l-o-o-d-e-d Indians." (We have known this person for many years and are pretty sure that she is not affliated with an indian tribe.) She then began to shout she was on the warpath, jumped up, began pounding the table, and telling the team that she was going to kill "that" woman who was messing around with her husband. Another client proceeded to request psychotropic medications - for two of the staff that work with her. (She made a pretty good case for it - indicating that they must need meds since they didn't give her second helpings of sausage that morning- even though she didn't ask for more. Evidently, not being able to read minds is a reason for medications.) Yet another client brought a deck of flash cards with him - flash cards he had made by cutting out his favorite girls from the new Sports Illustrated swim suit edition!

Yep, life and work can be pretty entertaining.

Now, where did I put my medicine bottle?

Sunday, October 26, 2008

10 Things I hate right now

10. Finishing a good book - and not having a sequel ready to read.
9. Having too much to do on the weekend.
8. Feeling guilty because I didn't do half the stuff I should have over the weekend.
7. People posting messages about how bad a blogger I am (even though it's true).
5. Knowing one of my kids is unhappy and not being able to "fix-it".
4. Not being able to see our new grand-daughter.
3. Big budget cuts!
2. Having to do a RIF (i.e. letting my employees go because of budget cuts.)
1. Having to tell clients we can't serve them anymore - because of - you guessed it - BUDGET CUTS.

Sunday, June 01, 2008


In 46 hours Michelle will be back in the states - and I'll be waiting to hug her.
My junk is out of her closet and clean sheets are on the bed.

I can hardly wait!

Sunday, May 04, 2008

blogging grades

After quickly checking the blogs of family and friends I have decided to issue grades based on the frequency or infrequency of their postings.

Michelle - gets an F - really Michelle - nothing to write in 2 months?
Paul - you get a D - its been a month for you - not as bad as Michelle - but knowing the Murphys, I know you have to have some escapade to share.
Me - I get a C - at least I post something more frequently than the 2 of you (remember - this grade is for frequency not quality of content)

Phillip / Jaime an A- I have to penalize you some since its a shared blog.

Return of the Fledglings

Over the past nine months, Ron and I have experienced an"empty nest" for the first time. While we have missed the kids, I must admit to having enjoyed the quiet house and freedom to do what we wanted when we wanted without regard to school schedules or their activities. My "stuff" - has gradually drifted into "their" rooms. (Michelle's room was turned into a combination library/ bedroom a couple of years ago - I'm still contemplating what to do with Logan's room).

Next weekend Logan will be back from his first year of college and next month Michelle returns from her lastest "missioning" in Amsterdam. I am excited that they will be home. I have missed them - but I must admit to some mixed feelings. I like using their spaces. I like knowing who will be home for dinner and at what time.

Of course, I also like getting to hug them and share things with them in real-time. As any parent will tell you - mom and dad's is always home - even when you have one of your own.

So this week I will pack up my stuff in preparation for the return of my fledglings.