MY WORK & LIFE HISTORY....

July 1956. I began my working life in the summer when I was 16 years old. Myrtle Shaw, a friend of my mothers let me stay with her and her adult son, Ronnie and foster daughters. My first job was at a restaurant, behind a counter serving coffee. I lasted one afternoon and was fired. My second job was at a roadside ice cream stand a week later. I would have been fired but the owner was a friend of Ronnie and I was allowed to stay for the summer with many reprimands to do my job correctly, like wearing a hair net etc.

June 1957, after graduating from high school in Canton, Maine, I went to live with my aunt and uncle in Quincy, Massachusetts. I got a job at the John Hancock Life Insurance company in Boston, filing. Later I transferred to a job in a different department, but I was inadequate for the position and was transferred to a typing job.

June 1960 I quit the John Hancock for a better paying position at a light bulb factory in Lynn, Massachusetts where I was living, and made $1.98 per hour. No more fighting traffic driving to Boston. I subscribed to a drafting home study course and bought a drafting table and lamp. I did well, getting straight A's for several lessons.

November 1962 I quit the factory and headed for California. After training on the adding machine at an agency, I got a job working with figures in an auto parts store in Los Angeles. I was quite good with the adding machine and calculations. I lost interest in my home studying in drafting.

April 1964 I quit the auto parts store and drove back to Lynn, Massachusetts to get married to the man I had been writing to while in California. I got a job at Fileen’s clothing department store doing figuring work with invoices. I proceeded to have three daughters over the next four years. Shortly after I gave birth and began raising my daughters their father left on November 11th 1968.

Sept. 1969 I began working as a teacher's aid in a kindergarten. The following year they did not want me back and so I began my college career.

Jan. 1969 Took two classes from Northwestern for social work.

Sept 1970 I was chosen to take part in a Federally funded Day Care training program which led to my entering college and getting a BS degree in Early Childhood Education, seven years later in 1976, from Salem State in Salem, Massachusetts. Carl Smith, director believed Day Care was the coming thing.

1973 January I received, a Real Estate brokers license and began to work for a Real Estate agent in Swampscott, MASS. I showed maybe two or three houses and felt severely self conscious and lacking self esteem. I then forced myself to do some door to door cold calling, which produced one buyer after I had quit the agency. It had slowly dawned upon me that Real Estate requires a person to be available in the evenings and weekends and I was a mother of three young girls.

Oct. 1975 October took a Leadership training Course for Camp Fire Girls, Inc. Became a leader for six months.

December 1976 took a class in Parent Effectiveness Training. Practiced how to listen to my children and express my anger somehow instead of keeping it in, causing me to have angry actions all the time.

1975 - 1977 cleaned houses through my own advertising. Saved money to move to Tennessee Aug. 1977

Sept. 1977 -cared for one child in my home for three months only, quit because I needed more money.

Dec. 1977 January took the GRE. I don’t remember why I was so interested in taking this test. I didn’t have plans to go to graduate school. I didn’t believe I could do a any thesis but probably wanted to assure myself I did have the intelligence to at least pass the GRE which I did. I also took work related abilities aptitude test and was told that I could be anything I wanted to be except an engineer.

Jan. 1978 - worked at a day care center (teacher assistant) met Becky. quit the following March to move away from the “Bible Belt” to CA.

Sept. of 1978. I took foster parenting classes and became licensed as a foster care home, taking in two young children for a few months. Their father took them for a Christmas visit and kept them!

I took many classes I especially liked—piano, tennis, ceramics FREE at Jr. City College Summer took classes at Ventura city college in things I was really interested in like learning to swim finally, so I took a swimming for the non-swimmer class, intermediate tennis, ceramics, beginning, speech,

1978 Nov. With a desire to go with my natural abilities, I enrolled in carpentry school, I loved working with wood. I made a beautiful tool chest. Learned all about building tract homes.

1979 Mar. My first carpentry job was tearing up carpet in JCPenny's for $4.00 an hour. In June I was laid off, because job ended. I didn’t like the errors made in tract homes and wanted to work in Heavy Equipment because it paid more.

1979 June learned to operate heavy equipment.

’79 Aug. Hired as a full time operator engineer apprentice ( heavy equipment operator, two jobs) until July 1980 Laid off and fired June 1980 was the only female operator. It paid $7.00 an hour with retirement benefits after five years employment.

’79 Sept. Took a class in Blueprint reading for Mechanical Drawing. I discovered drafting wasn’t for me.

Sept. 1980 I became interested in computers and went to Control Data Institute school in LA and learned four programming languages.

November 1980- Had a Spiritually Transformative Experience. (STE) Traumatized by abandonment of partner of two years. Lost old self centered self, overnight. I perceived the world and myself in a totally different light and was disoriented for a year.

March 1981 — Graduated from Control Data Institute and wasn’t able to get a job. My comprehension learning disability and grief began rearing its ugly head and after several interviews, I was never hired as a programmer.

I became an Herbalife Distributer and failed at that. I didn’t feel comfortable convincing people they needed my product for their health.

Sept. I joined Toastmasters in an attempt to eliminate my fear of speaking in front of people. I went through three or four speeches and quit because of fear.

I also took elementary Spanish the first of three repeated semesters of elementary Spanish in an attempt to learn the language. Failed to learn it. Also took

Sept. I got a job at Kelly Temporary Services, fired after three months, preferred to have breaks and lunch with factory workers than the office women. They didn’t like that. Was told my work was excellent.

Nov. 1981 Got a job using figures and set up a computer at a restaurant which I was good at.  Jim Font owner of the restaurant loved my computer skills.

Jan. 1982 Bought a video camera and wanted to start a video dating service. I rented an office, had it remodeled by a friend, set up a desk and my camera and waited. No business because I didn’t know anything about marketing my business.

’82 June— I took classes in the evening and received a certificate in Swedish Massage. Didn’t get a license, city licensing began just after class ended. It would have required more classes and testing. I gave up. In addition I found it to be very physically challenging to carry my heavy massage table up and downstairs to clients homes for my 100 hours of massages to certify.

Sept. ‘82 took computer programing, Basic; with lab also speech, intermediate tennis

August 1984 Jim died when his helicopter crashed into the ocean. I was laid off because I didn’t have enough accounting skills for the new restaurant owner.

Sept. 1984 I got a job with a drapery hanging company in Oxnard. I did simple office work and later learned the art of hanging draperies and estimating jobs. It paid $9.00 an hour but it was long hours and physically hard work. I slowly realized that I did not want this as my life career.

Sept. 1984 I was hired at Mac Donald's in Ojai as a manager trainee but was shortly demoted to assistant manager status when the owner saw that I couldn't hack it. My learning disability, coupled with anxiety got the best of me and I functioned poorly and left after a few months in my demoted role.

Jan. 1985 I then got another drapery hanging job in Oxnard with a different company but was fired after two weeks for taking too long to hang many draperies in someone's home.

Jan. 1985 I got a job in a print shop for $4.00 an hour but realizing I could not support my family with that income I decided to go back to school and get a Masters degree in what I was very interested in and knew quite a lot about psychology. I wanted to find out what I didn't know already know, but I was convinced I could not do a thesis.

June 1985 accepted into a Masters Program for counseling psychology Sept. 1985 I began my graduate program.

In addition I did volunteer counseling at the now defunct Camarillo State Hospital, at a County alcohol treatment center in Simi Valley, at Interface Counseling Center in Newbury Park and for Ventura County Mental Health. Before beginning my thesis I took classes at Ventura College and received certification in Alcohol and Drug Studies.

1989 - hired as a part time Independent Contractor to teach classes and counsel people convicted of driving while intoxicated over the legal limit. After two years I was fired.

I then volunteered at the Colston Youth Authority Juvenile Detention Center in Ventura and did my thesis work there in "Anger Management for Juvenile Delinquents".

1988 graduated with an MS in counseling psychology. There was no license attached to my degree and I failed to find a job as a psychological assistant. I filed for and became credentialed to teach or counsel at Ventura College but was not able to get hired.

July 1988 I was hired as an alcoholism counselor at (the now defunct) Alcohol Information School in Ventura. As an Independent Contractor, I Taught classes, held groups and counseled one to one sessions for people arrested for drunk driving and ordered by the court to attend school in order to get license back. Fired after two and a half years.

Jan. 1991 I was finally offered a job as a welfare case worker (after interviewing twice for the job). I did not accept this one and only full-time job offer (because I had begun to earn $100.00 a day living in with ill elderly people and caring for them.) However, it was the first time I ever passed an interview in front of several people, from the many interviews I had been to. I was quite proud of myself for that. It boosted my self-esteem greatly.

1981 I rejoined Toastmasters and did three or so more speeches. Then I quit again as a result of fear.

When my first live-in job was over, I went to school for and received Certification as a Nursing Assistant/Home Health Aide. I continued working living in with elderly and caring for them full time, seven days a week mostly.

In addition I took classes and became certified as an Administrator of a Residential Facility for the elderly. I looked into buying a home for the purpose of running it as an administrator but lacked sufficient funding.

I then took prerequisite courses for a Registered Nursing program. I continued to work, living in with ill elderly people for three more years until 1994. The stress finally overcame me and I was subsequently fired and then blackballed by the agencies I worked for. I was able to get two more live-in jobs but was eventually fired by the elderly people themselves leaving me somewhat homeless in Santa Barbara.

In the Spring of 1993, I applied for the LPN nursing school but I was not accepted. I then bought an old 1973, 24 foot, motor home for $400.00 and parked it in the back yard of the rented house that I left in Ventura where daughter, Tami was still living. My intention was to fix it up to live in. As I began to work on my RV, an ex-patient from Santa Barbara called me directly and asked me to come care for him. I went back to Santa Barbara and worked for him, without an agency knowing, until he died in the summer of 1994.

That Fall in 1994 I was accepted as a Registered Nursing Student at Santa Barbara City College and began taking classes. After moving to three places in three weeks, getting sick and being reprimanded for my work in the nursing home, I quit the program. This was the first time I had ever quit an Instruction Program of any kind.

In 1995, I began taking classes for computer maintenance and repair at SBCC while living in my camper truck, sleeping on quiet streets at night. I loved working with computers and especially the building and repair class.

At the end of my second year I began to take multimedia classes and loved them. I also took Photoshop and web design classes and loved them also. I started building a web page using straight HTML code. I wanted to make web pages for a living, but lacked ability to start a business.

I finally realized I could not get and keep a job so I applied for and received social security disability. My examination by the social security psychiatrist convinced them my comprehension disability kept me from maintaining a job. My job record was so spotty and irregular, it proved I did have a problem.

In January of 1997, I tore myself away from the classes I loved and left beautiful Santa Barbara (I couldn't stand living in my truck anymore) and began to remodel my motor home in the back yard in Ventura where daughter Tami still lives at the same house I rented in 1978. I spent three years remodeling my RV. During that time I took more Photoshop classes and web page classes at Ventura Junior College.

In 1998, I devoted full time taking care of my grandson Jaz, freeing Tami to take more classes in Photoshop and photography and become proficient in her work so she could start her own business in digital portrait photography and graphic design. I also wrote poetry and articles like my emotional journey which I keep current.

In September 2000 Tami began her business and Jaz started kindergarten. I begin writing and rejoined Toastmasters. I finally finished my ten speeches and became a Competent Speaker.

In August 2001 I took a class in PowerPoint.

In September 2001 Jaz started first grade. I began writing my Apple/Orange construct book as well as a proposal for a grant that will provide every child with a mentor in day care centers and elementary schools across the state who will get "promoted" with their students throughout the student's school life. My first article on the subject was published in June 2001 in a local newspaper.

In November 2001 I became a substitute teacher for Ventura Unified School District. I spent time playing with my newly acquired chickens and bunnies and loved it. I also planted some tomatoes.

December I rejoined Toastmasters for the third time and made it to ten speeches, however I dropped my membership after the ninth speech and did not get credit for the tenth speech I made on the spur of the moment at a meeting, which felt good and I received much positive comments. I knew I had finally conquered my fear of speaking in front of people.

In April 2002, 24 years after I rented the house in Ventura, I got a 30 day notice to vacate. The owner wanted his house back to live in. I put what I had in storage and spent the next two months traveling north to the Canadian Rockies, visiting friends and met new relatives along the way. Found a potential future home in the forest near Eugene, Oregon. It was the only place in the whole US I could afford to live with my below poverty social security income, approximately $100.00 a month. It was 40 acres of forest, a resort and I immediately joined.

In August 2002 I parked my RV at the Ojai Retreat in beautiful Ojai, California in exchange for 7 hours of work per week doing repairs on the Retreat House and cottages. I finally felt at home in a community of nice people who worked at the Retreat. It turned out to be much more than seven hours of work a week plus I took up two parking spaces, invaded the gardener's privacy in addition to being illegally parked on the grounds, unbeknownst to me. I left. Before leaving I had the opportunity to take a workshop about finding out the purpose for my life.

I took that and later took the training workshop to become a life coach.

In September 2002 I parked unlawfully in a woman's front yard just a half mile from the Retreat Center in Meiners Oaks in exchange for yard work and house repairs. I had no running water and had to secretly empty my toilet... frequently.

In February 2003 went to live in a yurt at Ojai Foundation and worked at the closed retreat. It was an exhilarating experience but after two weeks, I was worn out physically and quit. Went to live with daughter Tami and helped with Jaz who was now eight years old.

In July 2003 took off for my new potential home which was in the forest in Oregon and leased a site in the forest among friendly, helpful neighbors. Went back to Ventura to pack up my three vehicles.

September 2003 returned to Oregon with my packed truck. Stayed for about 6 weeks doing much needed work on my site. Many neighbors helped me. Made two wonderful friends and thoroughly enjoyed living in the forest. Bought a 5th wheel trailer, a 1997 Jayco, and moved all my belongings into it. It felt like heaven on earth.

June 2005 I again returned home to Oregon to begin the building of my deck and shed, which shall henceforth be called a "writing studio". For about two weeks during the summer I had the help of two good friends, George and Frank.

By November 2005 I had completed the deck, porch and studio foundation. I stack and cover the osb boards in a corner, for the winter. I head south to visit my daughters and friends for the winter.

In the Spring of 2006, I took two prerequisite weekend workshops in California from the Fearless Living Institute by Rhonda Britten. After finishing I decided to become a personal life coach.

May 20th, 2006 I headed back to Oregon with some anxiety to begin building my "writing studio".

In May 2009 I placed an orchard ladder on a wet deck up to the back of my trailer, whereupon it slid out from under me as I reached the very top. After falling down on my deck from about five feet up, I broke my shoulder and back. By the Fall I had healed and completed my building.

November 2009 I head down to San Diego for the winter and my 70th birthday celebration with my three grandchildren, three daughters and their boyfriend, fiancée and husband. It was a wonderfully magical time for me.

Spring 2010 I enjoy feeling well after many months of colds and sinus infections in San Diego. Looking forward to new directions in my life guided by the Great Spirit!

Lost the last of my old ego self, an identity as a poor, old woman, no productive work, no family or close friends, with a below poverty income. detached from everything, accepted what is, became free and all emotional suffering ended. Felt powerful, enlightened and joyously happy. Recognized my true Self. Left my old world behind, letting life, Love/God lead me in a new and unfamiliar world.

I join Unity of the Valley. I volunteer first than was hired to care for children while parents went to the service in church. The children were more present than adults and I felt "born again" spiritually. Did child care for five years then left so be among adults who were able to be present.

Spring 2011 I spent the winter growing and writing, organizing and socializing. Meeting new people and finally experienced living in my completed cozy writing studio.

2012 Shame ended as I forgave everyone including myself. Shortly thereafter all fear of people vanished, allowing me to completely surrender and be guided only by the Great Spirit of the Universe.

 

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