Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The obvious questions...

1) Who am I?

A 40-something in suburban Philadelphia who is adding to her hat collection; in addition to roles as daughter, wife, mother, family member, psychologist, supervisor, teacher, writer, cancer advocate, bread baker, domestic engineer, and friend, I'm adding Family-Centered Care consultant...and now blogger.

2) Why now?

It's 2009. It's the Year of the Ox. It's my year. (FYI, it's my daughter's year and Obama's year too.) All of you, hang on for a wild ride; less than a month in and the changes in my life have already started. A blog seemed like a good way to document it all. (A haircut is on the list.)

OK, so it was my New Year's resolution. "Writer" is up there on the list, but it was becoming a flabby, un-exercised part of me. What better way to get those literary muscles moving again?

3) What's with the name?

Honestly? The first name I chose was already taken (ironic smile).

One of my college chums referred to me as the "Mistress of Prefaces," which crown I proudly wear. Yes, there is an explanation for everything. There's an explanation for this one, too.

Those of you who know me know that my personal email addy is also "a3rdear," or more properly, "a 3rd ear." It's an expression among psychologists; when we listen to people, we listen with our physical ears, of course (those in this profession should...but that's fodder for another post). What we hear is "content": the actual words the client is saying.

But to be the best in this profession, one should listen with "the Third Ear": what is the underlying emotion, meaning, or purpose in what the client says? The Third Ear implies the use of an intuitive perception in communication. I place great importance on intuition, that internal felt sense that something is right, or that something is "off." In my personal and professional life, the Third Ear has never failed me.

One of my personal aspirations is to apply that Third Ear to everything I do. Even something as scientific as bread baking or cancer treatment has an aspect of intuition to it: a knowing that transcends words. (If you have time and a handy library, read "Blink" by Malcolm Gladwell. A bit of science-lite but entertaining and will give you an idea of what I mean.) So it gives you a picture of how I think, and it's a reminder to me to consult that Third Ear when I'm at a choice point.

"The3rdear" turns out to be a clever play on words as well. I have three amazing children..."the three are dear."

OK, must go chisel off the car; we are having an ice storm (I'm sure I'll have a rant about Philly weather sometime) and the kids are sleeping away their snow day but I'm scheduled to work.

Hi-ho. Hi-ho.