Thursday, March 6, 2008

Good but Bittersweet News

Rejoice with me! Lutheran Chick #1 is going to Lutheran Summer Music Festival and Academy for a month in July at Gustavus Aldolphus in Minnesota! She will be playing flute and singing with other students interested in church music,and making a joyful noise unto the Lord for a month! To learn more about the program, go HERE. She is very excited. She is our quiet, creative, but kind of disorganized child who often has great ideas that just.. kind of.. don't quite come together. In spite of struggles with some learning disabilities, she has always said that music is what makes the day worth getting up for. And we are grateful that she has a song she wants to share. Sadly, this wonderful month concludes with a week of concerts in a festival setting and I will be ... in CPE. It is a blessing she is going. Shouldn't that be enough for me? I have started trying to figure out if I can swing crazy shift swapping and maybe even get out for one day. Figuring out the Northwest flight schedule and how long the drive is from Minneapolis to St Peter. I am preparing to accept that the whole family ( none of whom is video savvy) will see and I will only hear about it. I guess it would be like hearing someone just saw the risen Christ on the road and I missed it. Well, maybe not that extreme.
And do I try to just work this out with my supervisor once CPE has started? DO I try to talk to him now? I have never met the supervisor. The person I met and who told me I was accepted has now been terminated. I have a place in the program but why make waves? Just really not sure what to do. I know there will be great moments in her life that I will not be there to see. Maybe this is one.
If anyone has advice about how to handle this- I would appreciate it. If anyone has info on getting to Gustavus Adolphus from Minneapolis and the like- also appreciated.


Diane said...

It's very easy to get to Gustavus from Minneapolis (GAC, as it is known). Would you like me to email the instructions to you? GAC was where I went to college I would love to go down there.

mgvh said...

If I recall, it was about a 90 minute drive from St. Paul to GAC. BTW, may I recommend flying out of Dulles using Sun Country ( Decent planes, non-stop, and cheap!

Chris said...

As you undoubtedly know, CPE is an intense and highly-structured program. Depending on how your hospital sets up the program, you and your fellow CPE students might be solely responsible for covering the hospital all summer. From needing to provide coverage for the hospital 24/7 to required group sessions and clinical floor hours, you spend alot of hours with your group and completely depend on each member of your group to get the job done.

For this reason, it can be very hard to get away (I know - I did a summer unit and a three unit CPE residency). "Permission" to get away from the group and the hospital for a few days may more likely depend upon your group rather than your supervisor (but I'd bring it up with your supervisor).

It was always difficult when someone in our group had dates they could not work. For example, there were five in our group, and any weekend requires five shifts - Friday overnight, Saturday day, Saturday overnight, Sunday day, and Sunday overnight. If one person wasn't available to work the weekend, we had to find a substitute to work (ie, a former CPE student) or one of us had to work a double shift. I've heard of another group where one CPE student could never work Sunday morning shifts, due to church responsibilities. This required other students to work Sundays more frequently, creating division and resentment within the group.

All this is to say that jumping town for a few days during CPE is much harder than it might be during field education, internship, or the academic semester. The nature of the shared shift work and strict requirements of CPE is very demanding and not very flexible (in my experience, anyway). Bring it up with your supervisor early in the process, and be willing to compromise and negotiate dates with your group (for example, your willingness to work July 4th 24-hour shift might go a long way to getting some grace on flying to LSM).

Sorry to share such a perspective, but it's the CPE reality that I know. Perhaps your experience will be different. Perhaps . . .

BTW, my wife is an LSM alum, and she just loved the experience!

LawAndGospel said...

Diane- the fastest route would be greatly appreciated! VH1-And also with U- great to hear from you! Thanks for the flight tip.Harrisburg Airport is 20 min from my house. Hope sabbatical is going well! Chris-what you say confirms what I suspect. My hope is to fly out early Sat am and get back 11:30 Sun night. That way I see GAC by day, closing concert and final festival worship. Otherwise I am a slave to the machine.Being a litigator in my former life I am used to "unless you are dying, you are expected in court." Once did a criminal proceeding with 104 fever and won. But I don't remember how.

Diane said...

Is your CPE in a hospital? Mine was in a mental health facility, and there was a little more flexibility with hours. However, if you are doing hospital CPE, he is right.

I think Gustavus is more like 60 minutes from Minneapolis, but I may be optimistic. from airport, take 62W to 169S. And 169S all the way to St Peter i think the street you want is Minnesota up to the college.

sure wish I could meet you!

The Unlikely Conversationalist: said...

The directions Diane gave are great. Just watch out for rush hour in the Twin Cities. It can grind a 60 minute trip out into a 90 minute one easy if you don't know how to make a move around the jam.

LawAndGospel said...

I am in a hospital and it is a trauma center. The mental health facility I wanted is no longer a site. At least I did not say yes to the acceptance from THE regional trauma center where I would not even remotely contemplate flying over two days. I am hopeful but realistic. Diane, if I end up getting to come out, I will let you know- I myself had thought it would be great to meet a fellow RevGal blogger.

Gannet Girl said...

I'm doing CPE this summer,too --

As you know, I think this is the hardest part of this entire experience at a "later" age -- so many conflicting responsibilities and desires make participating in programs designed for 20-somethings so difficult.

Although I too remember the "be in court unless you are dead" time of life.