Discovery’s Last Flight (and the remaking of a dream)

Today’s flyover of the world’s most traveled space shuttle marked the end of an era. And has brought me a measure of sadness. Not for the end of the space program as I (and many others) know it, but also an end to something my son hoped for.

When Atlantis flew for the last time, kiddo and I were both very sad. I recalled all of my memories of the space program. Shuttle launches were routine for me. The flights happened regularly and I didn’t think it would come to an end. I remember the Challenger and Columbia tragedies clearly. But, even in the face of these two disasters, I felt it was important for the space program to continue.

Kiddo has said for a very long time how he wants to go to outer space. I’ve long encouraged this goal, especially as he’s shown a great aptitude for science and math. I’ve told him that he can do anything and be anyone he wanted to be –ย  including an astronaut.

Since the last space mission in July 2011, kiddo and I have been rethinking his goals. He wanted to be an astronaut and physicist. He’s been very consistent on this idea for over a year. What I’ve suggested is that he include his love of space and become an astrophysicist. He’s slowly warming to the idea and I’ve been thinking of ways to keep encouraging his love of space.

So, while shuttle flights have ended, the closing door has allowed us to feel the breeze from the open window. I do believe that kiddo will get to space one day and I will be one very proud mom.

Job Search Challenge

I’ve been looking for a new job since early January. The job that I began in December was not a good fit so I quit. I was able to do this and manage well. But for someone who has been employed since adolescence, not having a job hasn’t been easy.

I’m used to being very busy. The first few weeks of unemployment found me practicing good self-care – sleeping well, eating well and catching up with my support network. (I’d lost all of these things while at that other job along with a few pounds.) I believe that good self-care allows people to work at their best. So I caught up with that.

Now that I’ve been out of work for three months, I have been keeping busy in other ways. I have been on interviews, sent out countless resumes, & even revamped my resume (several times) but haven’t landed the right job. But Heiddi, why not just take any job? I choose not to take any job because I’ve worked too hard for too long to take a step back.

Taking any job just to have one isn’t my thing. I worked my way from “any job” to a job working with children and families. Going to graduate school and earning a license was supposed to open up career options andย  help move me forward in my career.

What I’ve found though is that most people don’t know what my license is. (I’m a Licensed Bilingual Mental Health Counselor, btw.) It is a very new license and has only been issued since the year 2000. Here is a definition from the NY Mental Health Association, which is an “advocacy organization representing the clinical counselors of New York State. Our continuing role is to protect and enhance the rights of counselors to practice our profession.”

The challenge for me has been the lack of awareness that the LMHC is the equivalent to an LCSW or a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. I wanted to share this to educate others about licensed Mental Health Counselors. I’m also trying to stay positive about my job search by sharing this information. And for the record, my dream job would be to work on an in-patient psyche unit for kids and teens in NYC.

For anyone looking for work, keep moving forward and don’t lose sight of your dreams. I’ve learned to think outside of the box when it comes to job seeking. I’ve also learned that I’m very blessed to have my support network of family and friends who love and care for me. So, while I haven’t yet landed my dream job, I do know that my support network rocks! And I’m so grateful.

This post has a Compensation Level of 0.

Click here to read Heiddi’s Full Disclosure Policy.

Not Writing much

Yesterday was “I love Writing Day” (November 15). Haven’t been writing much lately except for the day job. I haven’t been loving writing lately either. Between work and issues with kiddo (and his father), my writing muse hasn’t shown up much. I think she decided to take a vacation without telling me. Not very nice of her.

Then again, I’ve not been making the effort to write-through my negativity. My journal has been collecting dust in my bedroom instead of being pressed in my fingers while I write down all of my thoughts and feelings. So I haven’t had a place to put all of the crap I’ve been dealing with. And that has not been good for me either because (therapist talking here), my negative thoughts get stuck in my head and have no place to put them.

In this way, my writing has suffered so much. Simply because I’ve been ignoring my inherent need to write. Even my negative thoughts. Time to get back on track and be good to my writer-self and my muse.

Btw, still writing for Momslikeme.com and Naptime Stories. I like the new blog and love the focus on parenting. My blogs go up on Fridays so I get to cap off each week. lol Look for me there if you like.

November Round-up and a thank you

Hello people. Just checking in after a crazy few weeks at my day job. Even though I was super busy, I managed to write a decent amount this month and added two new writing jobs to my load. So far, so good. Here are my goals below:

1. Five posts here on my portfolio.

2. Six posts at The Freshman Writer.

3. One post at Flaimahmy (pronounced Fly Mommy)

4. Landed a new writing job.

5. Attempted Nano. (While I didn’t succeed, I know why it went on the back burner.)

6. Four articles at my parenting site.

The Round-up

Well, the bottom line is that my day job went haywire and I needed to focus all of my energy on getting the job done. It’s my bread and butter at this point and is what allows me to write without worrying too much about when I’ll get paid. I want to increase my posts at The Freshman Writer to two or three times weekly, here at least once a week (which I have been doing), two or three times a week at my parenting site, once or twice weekly at Fly Mommy. We’ll see how that goes going into next month. And while I may not have hit my goal numbers, I have achieved another informal goal – to earn more money this year through writing than I did last year. I definitely surpassed the amount I made last year, but I don’t know by how much. And it really doesn’t matter anyway because I’m proud of myself for hitting and passing my goal. ๐Ÿ™‚

And last but not least is my thank you:

I just want to say thank you to everyone who has supported my writing goals this year. From my family and friends to my co-workers and online pals. Thank you for encouraging me when I was down, giving me a kick in the rear to get me in gear and especially, for helping me achieve my writing goals this year. I know that 2010 will be even more spectacular because of your support. Thanks friends!

 

Nano went kurplunk

Well, my Nano journey has come to an end. Now it’s not official yet, because Nano doesn’t end until next week. But, my day job has been so crazy that I haven’t had time to scratch my head, let alone add to my nano project. So, I’ve decided to call it quits. In fact, I stopped writing the second week of Nano.

At first, I thought “I’ll get back to it” and did a few times by adding notes and research that I’ve done for the project. Then, I felt like it was getting farther and farther away from me.

Other than my nano disaster, I’ve been writing here, at the Freshman Writer, my parenting site and the newest site I write for – Flaimahmy.com (Fly mommy). Between writing for the sites and journaling as well as my day job, I’ve been keeping busy. I’ve also been keeping up with Moms Like Me as the discussion leader.

So, no goals other than to come here and report everything I’ve been doing writing-wise.

Not much progress

Well, I’ve logged about a thousand words for Nanowrimo. I don’t know if I really thought this out. I figured if I had a good idea to work on, I could just write no matter what. The problem for me has been my day job. It’s very stressful for me and by the time I get home, I’m so drained that I don’t even want to look at a computer. I’m wondering if I should quit and its the second week already! I should be much farther along than I am. I really can’t complain though – I’ve attempted something new that I hadn’t thought I’d even make progress with.

Still have articles that need to get done so I need to get cracking. Later.

1000 Words and counting

So – Nanowrimo has me at over 1000 words now. Not anywhere near the 8,333 words that I need to be up to date by tomorrow, November 5. But, progress is happening. I posted this morning at my parenting site and at The Freshman Writer, so I’ve been a busy writer. And even though the day job has been very stressful and home responsibilities, too. I’m just glad that the Muse slapped me in the face to keep me writing today. Later!

Gearing Up

Okay, so I’m only a few days from beginning Nanowrimo and I’m petrified. Butterflies the size of cats are crashing into each other in my stomach. Okay maybe it’s not that bad, but I’m definitely getting antsy now. I only have a few more days until the writing challenge begins.

While I can’t get to in-person events and meet-ups, I can get on the forums to touch base with other Nanowrimo-ers. Hopefully that will keep me motivated (along with my wordcount) to keep writing my book.

My chapter outline is done as well as the research for my book. Its based on bible verses on the life of the Virgin Mary and is for mothers. I can’t wait to see what the finished product will look like. I know there will be a lot of editing to do, but my goal is to hit 50K within the month.

I wrote about Nanowrimo at The Freshman Writer and also posted an article at my parenting site. I still haven’t written a post for my new writing gig, so I’ll need to get cracking on ideas for that site. My goal is to post over there once a week so what I can do is draft ideas this week and then get started next week with my first post.

That’s all the biz from me right now. Keep checking here to see my progress with Nanowrimo. ๐Ÿ™‚

October Round up

I know that this month isn’t quite over yet, but I have some news to share. First off, I’m still writing. Not as much as I’d like, but still writing.

I’ve been journaling quite a bit lately though articles and poems are still coming along. This month, I’ve posted at The Freshman Writer and on the parenting site a couple of times so far with plans for more articles and blogposts. I’ve also been looking for steady writing jobs and applied for one yesterday. A response came back quickly and I’m looking over the contract tonight. ๐Ÿ™‚ I have a steady writing job already with Momslikeme, but I want to stretch myself (and my writing) a bit to keep the juices flowing.

And the biggest news of all is that I’ve decided to sign up for Nanowrimo. If you’ve never heard of it, it is otherwise known as National Novel Writing Month. From November 1 – 30, writers are challenged to write a total of 50,000 words or 175 pages of a fiction or non-fiction manuscript. I already have my book idea in place, did my research and have my chapters outlined. So I’ll be ready to go with Nanowrimo when November 1st comes around. I want to complete this book and possibly challenge myself to complete more manuscripts this way. I will keep my word count posted here as the month goes on.

Other than that, still plugging away with the writing. ๐Ÿ™‚

April Goals

Well, in my last postย I wrote about how I did with my goals in March. Needless to say, I tend to surprise myself. Especially when it comes to applying for writing jobs. I don’t usually apply anymore, but I still look around for something really interesting. I think that if I find a job I’m really interested in, I’ll work hard on it and not let it go by the way side because of my day job.

I’ve been very lazy overall. Not sleeping enough and catching up on the weekend has kept me from being focused on writing. In addition, I’ve pretty much given up on the writing course. I don’t think long distance education classes are for me, especially those that don’t require me to check in every week. I feel disconnected from the instructor and am basically teaching myself at this point. It upsets me because I’m not only paying for this course, but I could earn college credits with it if I finish. And I would not get them if I don’t finish. I wrote an email to the instructor last week and I’m hoping to get a response soon. We’ll see how that goes.

So this month, my goals are:

1. Write two blog posts for The Freshman Writer, Examiner.com, and here.

2. Respond to five posts per week at Momslikeme.com.

3. Draft article ideas for Examiner.com ahead of time.

4. Complete my third assignment for the writing course.

5. Touch base with my writing pals.