So it was four years ago today that I took a first step on this path, interviewing to enter California Pacific Medical Center’s Clinical Pastoral Education program in San Francisco, or CPE. At the time I had no idea what I was getting myself into, which is good, because if I had known I was going back to grad school to do this I would have thrown in the towel before I started.
But I didn’t know, and I did my first two units in the Pacific, Davies, and St. Lukes hospitals before my comrades and supervisors and friends and family talked me into going back to school to get a Masters of Jewish Studies on a Chaplaincy track, at the Academy of Jewish Religion California. Starting school, I also was blessed to start doing the internship for my last two units of CPE at an organization I had loved and volunteered with in my community for many years, Hospice of Petaluma.
So that was last year. Now, I am still at AJRCA, but have finished my 4th and final unit of CPE, and have finished my internship. At CPMC, HOP, everywhere. An alphabet soup of nostalgia, and some nervousness about whether I’m ready for the next steps.
But I’m excited to say the next step is here. Hospice of Petaluma has hired me to be a part-time Per Diem Spiritual Care Provider, i.e. a paid Chaplain. I start tomorrow morning.
I am honored. I am excited. I have worked really fucking hard, and will continue to do so. The people I work with are so good at what they do, full of discernment, observant, heartful, and professional, and I am in awe. I am blessed to get to grow in my chaplain’s shoes next to them, sitting in circle.
All the people in all my four cohorts have been washing through my mind, and my three CPE Supervisors–Julie Hanada, Heather Weidemann and Sarah Montoya, and Rochelle Robins. Thank you everybody, and thanks to G_D.