Wednesday, June 2, 2010

'Round here

(My pictures don't match the post, but here is a description! 1. I went to Prague to visit a wonderful friend and had an amazing time! 2. Y has spent lots of time with extended family lately and loves it! 3. Hark! We have a 2nd family photo! Y wants to make sure you understand that she is almost 4 years old...I think that is why she is holding up her fingers! :)

Remember all of those changes I talked about? Wow! They are feeling pretty big right now! After 7 pretty amazing years of working with refugee children and families, I left my job last Friday (check this out). It was sad and heartbreaking, but also time for a new challenge. For me, change is tough and leaving my job also felt like leaving my community and leaving work that has not only been fulfilling, but a true joy to participate in. And for better or for worse, so much of my identity over the last few years has been built on the work that I do. It is easy to idealize everything now and say that all of my years at WR were blissful; they weren't and I know that. But it sure is hard to let go of something as unique and truly meaningful as refugee resettlement and my colleagues are truly wonderful and amazing people.

Leaving one job means finding another! I am so thankful "in this economy" (to use the overly annoying phrase) to have had some options! Thankfully social workers are in demand (too bad the pay doesn't follow!) and I was able to choose something that works well with family life. Here it is....drum roll please....I am totally changing fields from international human rights work to providing counseling services to mothers who are making an adoption plan for their child. Yup, I know. It's totally different. Call it counter transference, but I was truly curious when I saw the opportunity and am really looking forward to diving into this field (for awhile......). Given my experience with adoption, I think I just have a real passion for making sure that birth mothers have options that are ethical and plans that are presented in a compassionate manner and thorough way. I really enjoy counseling and am excited to continue to do this with a new population. The agency I am working with does domestic adoptions (and international home studies) with women mostly from the Chicago area. I'm only on week one, but I am finding the training to be intense and stretching.

A change for me means a change for Y since she was going to preschool at WR. We are really lucky to have a wonderful (Ethiopian!) babysitter who will be watching her for the next few weeks as well as some of July until Nathan finishes school. She will hang out with N most of the summer and then start a preschool/daycare in late August. She seems to be happy, so that of course makes us happy!

What else can I say? The sun is shining and summer weather just makes life better! Here's hoping I get back into an exercise routine with this lovely weather. Here's hoping this is my last stream of conscious blog post. Here's hoping you report back to me on how YOUR life is going! :)


EmilyC said...

exciting new changes! sounds like a real fit!! i can't wait to hear more about it. did you know we're pregnant? due september!

Amy said...

Yay Richelle! Glad to hear about the new job, and the fam's summer plans! Miss you! hopefully I can catch you in ChiTown before I head to South Bend. But you'll know where to find me, so I'm not worried!!!!!

Colleen and JF Bertrand said...

Wow! You have a lot going on! Congrats on your new job, although I am sad to hear about WR's decision. Y is gorgeous- I love her dress.

Amanda said...

Congrats on the new career path. I think that sounds like a wonderful job and a unique niche. Good luck with everything!

Evelyn said...

Two amazing careers. How many of us get that in a lifetime? Sounds great.

los cazadores said...

I hope you are doing great with all the transitions. I need to send you an email, or ping you up on the tellyfone.

Love the photos, that Little Y is one radiant, adorable gal.

Wish we could come to Chicago to see you all. (Um, how jealous am I that you went to Prague.)

I am hoping for transitions as well... we'll see.



Maribeth said...

Too cute. Little Y is beautiful! Congrats on the job. Hope you're all doing well with the changes.

Jen Moul said...

Good to catch up on your life and your beautiful family. Wow...there's a lot there. Love you. Mo