Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Internalized Sexism

Negative views about women are in the air and everywhere.

Being the sensitive beings that we are, we absorb these views readily. 

We are also very good students and diligently learn these negative views.

So how do we know if we have fallen under this insidious spell?

Being self-reflective, we can ask ourselves:
  • Do we judge women leaders, colleagues, subordinates more harshly than men in similar ranks?
  • All things being equal, do we prefer to report to men than to women?
  • Are we more competitive with other women than with other men?
  • Are we more likely to appreciate, hire, promote, support, compliment a male than a woman doing the same job or task?
  • Are we more likely to listen to or value the advice of a man rather than a woman?

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Download from Irene

Cree en amor
Cree en lo positivo
Cree en Dios
No tengas miedo
Nosotros te queremos.


Believe in love
Believe in the positive
Believe in God
Do not be afraid
We love you.

Persistence

I am who I am because of my mother, Irene Acuña.  I decided to become a professional social worker because of Jolene Swain.  I honor my mentors and am grateful for all they have taught me.

At my mother's memorial service, many spoke to honor her.  I'll never forget one of the stories told about her.  Celina, the Women's Ministries President of my mother's church, was one of the speakers and called my mother her "spiritual mother."  She recounted how my mother had made several home visits to invite Celina to church.  When Celina saw my mother coming up the walkway to her door, she'd run to her bedroom and instruct her husband to tell my mother she wasn't home.  At the second home visit, my mother told Celina's husband that she'd wait for Celina to come home and sat herself down on their porch.

I had never heard that story before my mother's memorial service.  I cried when I heard it because it all made sense, my mother had taught me persistence in action.  One thing I know for sure is that the only difference between success and failure is persistence.  I will persevere or die trying.

My mother was a force of nature and undeterred.  Her spirit now lives on in me.  I am grateful to be standing on the shoulders of such a giant.  So when I hear school social workers say it is impossible to engage parents in children's mental health treatment, especially at the secondary level, I say baloney.  It is possible.  It is difficult.  Don't you dare give up.  The next generation is counting on you to persevere - there is a President among them. Si se puede.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Connecting the Dots

My mentors are gifts from God.

At a recent lunch with one of my mentors (and they feed me too!), she told me that insecure people are envious.

I think the core beliefs of insecurity are:  "I am incompetent" and "I am unloveable"

Both are lies of the devil and yet we believe sometimes.

One of my spiritual healers said that it is foolish for the envious to misuse power to get what they want.  It will only come back to them.

When we embrace that we are competent and loved, we become full and whole.

We are all good at something.  God loves all of us.  Go in peace.


Thursday, September 15, 2011

Shaman Visit

Purposeful disclosure:

I met with a shaman to do soul retrieval and spirit helper work.  It was amazing.

I am home (soul retrieval and integration).  I am not alone (protected by the spirit helpers).  I am on the right path (doing what I came here to do).  I need to spend more time walking in nature (to clear the energy).

Our ancestors want to help us.  How did we become cut-off from our customs, ways, healing practices, heritage?  There is a way to reconnect.  It has always been there.

Thank God for love, forgiveness, healing, integration and peace.

I hope you find your way home.  Integration is possible.

Friendly Wisdom

My mother used to tease that my true mother was my books ("tu madre los libros").

This summer, rather than sticking my nose in a book, I spent more time with friends and family.  They offered motherly wisdom.

One wise and vivacious friend said, "those that love you will love you regardless, those that hate you will hate you regardless."  I had a slap-my-forehead moment after that one.  I appreciate those that love me despite my quirks and annoyances.  And I have stopped bending over backwards to appease those that will hate me regardless. Freedom to be myself, baby. I still believe in love and respect for all because we are one.  But the bending over backwards was a bit much so I've stopped that $hit right there.

Another wise and true friend said, "parece que nunca se les ha presentado el diablo!" Which roughly translated means, "It seems like they've never met the devil!"  When you have struggled to overcome hardship, a bump in the road doesn't have to throw you for a loop.  I am grateful for growing up in a low-income ethnic minority urban community.  It made me hone the powers of "I'm-ma figure this $hit out, dammit" in order to survive.

Finally, an elder mentor told me about a plaque that she saw on a colleagues desk that read:  "Those that love me, may they love me. And may God cripple those that hate me so I know them by their limp."  Or something like that.  I'm assuming the maiming prayer is metaphorical.  But I do believe that those that hate are limping.  God bless them.

Efficiency

When I was younger, I could run around and try everything to see what stuck.

Now that I am older, I only want to try what works.

My time and finite psychic energy is ever more precious to me now.