I’m in a state of uneasy transition. Although I am uncommonly eager to embrace change, I am no less challenged by it than are most people. I am about to leave one job and start a new one, and to make that work, I am having to move from one home to another, thankfully only about 45 miles away from Seattle—a city I have come to love in the 2½ years I have been here.
I crossed the continent in September 2008 to take a palliative care position in Seattle—a job which ended after only 16 months. Now I will be leaving Planned Parenthood, where I have worked part-time for the past 12 months to start a new full-time position with the palliative care team at Franciscan Health Systems. I am thrilled to be returning to end-of-life care, which is a true calling and a bit anxious about the prospects of returning to a full-time work schedule.
Not only do I know how compelling—sometimes overwhelming and exhausting—this work is, but I am having to let go of precious time that, over the past year, I have spent on my own, quietly for the most part, reading and writing. I’ve had the delight of having some poems published over the past 6 months, and know how much hard work and time went into producing those poems. I worry that I can’t have both—full time fulfilling work and a writing life.
Regarding the writing life, I am also in uneasy transition. Today I am trying to commit to changing my blog site from a duet of Blogspot and Open Salon to this blog while at the same time, wanting to commit to begin to blog again with more consistency. I started the blog at Blogspot in order to interact with a tight and supportive community of bloggers who focused on hospice and palliative care. I sort of crumbled when I lost the palliative care job and was rummaging about to get back on my writing feet. I started to blog at Open Salon and discovered that the community there is a highly interactive one, enjoyable in some ways, but uncomfortable to my more-or-less hermit proclivity. I also discovered that my desire to write vignettes about my work was not sustainable in that setting.
So why have I bopped on over to Word Press to start a blog here? I suppose it’s partly because so much of the community I have begun to count on this year for succor and support—the poetry loving community—is here. The truest reason, though, is that changing blogs is about changing me. I was one sort of blogger at My Space (where I first blogged in 2006) and another sort of blogger at Blogspot, and yet another persona at Open Salon. So here I am trying again to refurbish myself with yet another way to be-and-blog in the world.
As I have said, I both embrace change and am challenged by it. I have spent an embarrassing number of hours trying to crack the code here and trying out different screens, adding and subtracting features, and on and on. I am not embarrassed though by the time I spent choosing my banner and background images, which are of neurons (banner) and cancer cells (background). Make what you will of that! I can’t abandon my need to view the world in its biologic forms, and I can’t deny my medical background. I don’t renounce my driven curiosity about the brain/mind and will probably always have a morbid interest in pathology. I wouldn’t be surprised though, if I changed images from time to time, to suit my changeable focal points.
Now that I think I have managed to set up a blog here, I’m hoping to begin to blog regularly again (fingers crossed). I have found blogging to be a way to speak to myself through the lens of others. I’m hoping for a blending of my passions, and if successful, an integration of writing about the work and making art of it, simultaneously. Uneasy bed sisters?