September 26, 2010

My Ida baby

Saturday morning Adam and I woke up and noticed that one of Ida's back legs was swollen and enlarged.  It was a little surreal how different it looked from her other leg.  She didn't seem to be in any pain and wasn't limping or anything.  I was immediately worried because earlier in the week she had made a mess all over our roommates room, which was completely unusual.  A few days later she had puked a couple times but seemed to be getting better.  I thought maybe she just ate something in the garbage that upset her stomach, but now with her leg swollen I got really freaked out.

We spent all Saturday morning in the hospital waiting.  It was horrible.  Finally the vet came in to examine Ida and noticed that one of her lymph glands was really swollen, which was probably causing poor circulation in her leg.  She seemed really unsure of what was going on and had to consult a book.  I was really hoping we would just go in there and she would tell me Ida got bit or stung by something.  Instead I just ended up being terrified and confused.  She said there could be a variety of reasons causing her gland to swell.  Tick borne disease, bacterial infection, fungal infection or cancer.  I know she's just a dog, but when I heard the vet say "cancer" my heart sank.  She's my baby and it scares me too much to think about.

They took some blood and a cell sample and will be calling us Tuesday with the results.  I'm also going to be in San Angelo for work the next two days which just makes me feel so much more anxious and scares.  I'm hoping an praying it's not something serious because I don't think I'm strong enough to handle anything else.

September 22, 2010

My job

I should probably update this thing more. It would probably help me get a better sense of what's going on in my life, because most of the time I just feel confused and a little lost.

My first week of work was rough. I felt like I was experiencing culture shock but it was more like work shock. Working in an office and in a University was such an adjustment for me. Also the first week I was here, most everyone in the IDVSA was out of town or working from home so I spent most of my time reflecting, questioning and comparing myself. It being my first week and not having a lot to do and then not having anyone around to ask questions or get a sense of my role gave me too much time to self reflect.

I spent too much time comparing myself to everyone else and eventually realized that's not a constructive way to spend my time. I still feel intimidated by my work environment. The people I work with are all incredibly smart and focused. And they are all doing really important things that I feel my part is so minimal. But I'm trying to not focus my time on that and instead focus on learning and being more confident.

Enough of all that emotional stuff. Here's the lowdown on the stuff I'm doing as the Interpersonal Violence Education Coordinator:

1st International Conference on Human Trafficking - October 6-7, 2010
This conference is spearheaded by Texas Representative Senfronia Thompson. I'm not really involved with this conference, but I get to attend and that's really exciting to me. Also two members of the IDVSA will be panelists for the conference.

5th Liberation-Based Healing Conference - November 5-6, 2010
I will be the volunteer coordinator for this conference which seeks to bring together practitioners and therapists, community activists and organizers, educators, and faith community leaders for dialogue and inquiry focused on a system of relational healing that embraces critical consciousness, empowerment, and accountability.

Expert Witness Training - January 9-11, 2011
The training is designed for attorneys, domestic violence service providers and professionals who are interested in being considered as expert witnesses in court cases involving domestic violence. This is a big project that I am involved with, working on organizing the curriculum and programming for the event.

Statewide Sexual Assault Needs Assessment
This research project of the IDVSA is assessing and evaluating different sexual assault programs in the state. We will be interviewing police officials, district attorneys, nurses and survivors throughout the state to evaluate the different programs and approaches. I was invited to go to San Angelo next week to tag along on the trip. It's really exciting for me because research has always seemed so mysterious to me and it will be great to get some first hand experience.

There's lots of other projects going on, but that's all the room my brain has right now. I will leave you with a photo of me in my office.

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