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I’m caught at work with nothing to do. Well, comparatively. I could be researching new groups; I could be working on my quilt block; I could even slip back to my office where I can do my tiny data-crunch of the people who visited the center in September. But I can’t concentrate on the first two and the third is awkward: I’m sort of invisibly babysitting a recovery group from the receptionist’s area.

I’m not part of the group officially for two reasons. For the first, it’s 90 minutes long, and that’s too long, even with coloring. (A perk of being a peer specialist is that people understand my need to focus on doing something like abstract artwork during meetings to hold down the wiggles and help me pay attention.) For the second, I’m not the official facilitator, but being Frau Direktor, it can sometimes be funky with group dynamics, and this group is new and a little wobbly.

But I’m here because earlier it looked like a peer would be present who’s been having a hard time recently. Last week, she threw a tantrum during a group–and that one was being run by an honest-to-john psychiatrist–and stormed out. The facilitator made it clear that it needed to be Handled somehow, if at all possible. So when I popped my head into the program to see how it was running and saw her here today mumbling to herself . . . uh-oh. So basically I stayed behind this afternoon in the role of possible official bouncer–but she’s not here after all. Just as well.

You may be thinking that it’s politically incorrect of us to have standards of behavior–after all, we’re all mad here–but I assure you, it’s necessary: People acting out can be frightening and triggering to other peers as well. Getting screamed at was one of the things they left off my job description during the hire (possibly because it was also done by the guy hiring me, who is thankfully no longer with the firm) but it is my job. As is calling security. Sigh. But not today. Today I try not to eavesdrop and sit here blogging to you. (Not a total loss. I’m able to touch base with building maintenance about the rock somebody threw through our window this morning. Sigh again.)

Meanwhile, back at my life: We still haven’t moved–but November 1 is now the ticket. It’s reached a level of unreality by now–the stress coating my soul has coagulated like the cheesy mold that coats a long-forgotten cup of coffee. I know on a purely intellectual level that it will be violently dug into by the cleaning brush of packing in two weeks, because by then I’ll be attending two 40-hour weeks of intensive training. In other words, I’ll be exhausted and cranky. I still haven’t finished the prop paintings I’m doing. Moving then would be a cruel joke, but we know the universe loves to laugh.

I’ve decided to participate in the zaniness of NaNoWriMo for the first time this year, which will force some sort of writing out of my head. I’ll link some bits here. And I haven’t forgotten about Damascus! m’ not dead yet! I’m getting better! I feel happy!

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