My Life So Far–Forward

Up to here, I have given an extensive story with some depth. However, from here on, I'm only going to hit some high points. This is a story that will not have an ending. Or rather, when it does, someone else will have to write it.

Returning to Marin, I focused on building my pastoral psychotherapy practice and continue to this day to see clients three days a week. On two other days, I work on special projects like producing a webinar series for the AAPC Pacific Region, writing articles, and enjoying my photography.

Soon after my return to Marin, Adriana and I decided to take the step of making our relationship legal. If she was my second daughter, I would adopt her legally. This was the first adult adoption the judge had ever had. But there was no legal impediment.

I'm not sure whether that makes my relationship with Hugo a legal one, but for all other reasons, he is my grandson. I am so proud of him. This year he will graduate from UCLA and I will be there–as I was at his high school graduation.

Two years later, Adriana was a student now at Smith College in Massachussetts. In order to fulfill her course requirements for a Latin America major, she needed to study Spanish.  As a Brazilian, she already spoke Portuguese, but she by now was also fluent in Spanish.

Still, to fulfill the requirements she needed to go beyond simple fluency. They agreed that if she attended the Cuernavaca Language School–one of the premier schools in Spanish–they would award her with the requisite credits.

I decided that I would like to further improve my Spanish as well. So we flew to Cuernavaca and started. Whereas, for me, the regular immersiona course was just fine, the school had to create a special course for Adriana as she was already beyond what they had in their regular curriculum.

Not only Spanish, but we learned a great deal about Cuernavaca, the pre-Columbian world of Mexico and more. Adriana also took this opportunity to get married to he fiance, Bill, who flew down from Massachussetts. The wedding took place in the magnificent Hacienda de Cortes. This was the summer house designed and built for Hernan Cortes, the Spanish conqueror of Mexico, by his translator, advisor and concubine, Malinche. This woman had to have been brilliant to build this house, advise Cortes, etc.

After returning from Cuernavaca, I was able to be minimally helpful to a small Latino clientele. Unfortunately, doing counseling does require a level of cultural insight that I can only wish for. However I was also working at the Kaiser hospital as a volunteer chaplain and my small amount of Spanish was helpful there.

I continue my counseling/psychotherapy. That keeps me off the streets and out of mischief. The international webinar series that I produce for the American Association of Pastoral Counselors, takes up a good bit of time. I also write articles and blog. I read voraciously; especially John Shelby Spong, Daniel Araoz, Peter Breggin, Elaine Pagels, Joan Price, Thich Nhat Hanh and so many more; mostly in psychotherapy and spirituality, but some, like Paulo Coelho, for fun.  And I even take some time for my photography.

Last year, Tamayo turned eighty. She decided to celebrate by taking a 12-day Mediterranean cruise and asked me to accompany her. This year will mark 59 years that we have been friends for several years, then married for 20, and now another 30+ years of friendship. My photographs from this trip are also on this website.

Adriana returned, sans husband, from Massachussetts about ten years ago. I now have a three-year-old grand daughter, Isabella. She is as wonderful as only a little girl of that age can be. (Of course, if you are from the Transactional Analysis community, you will realize that this is the age when the Little Professor's hunches come up against reality.) I do love this child beyond imagining.

Hugo was already in late middle school by the time Adriana and my relationship blossomed into the father-daugter one that it is. The grandson bonding had begun earlier, but not until high school did we actually begin to acknowledge it. So this relationship with Isabella is a first for me. She was barely out of the womb when we first met and now, at three plus, we are deeply in love.

I've also been following the continued growth in Frankie. She has, in so many ways, taken charge of her life. I've watched her oversee a major renovation of a home where she lives with two emotionally troubled people. She has no legal authority, but she has successfully managed the negotiations with the bank and contractors. She is another source of pride and pleasure.

Since this long, drawn-out story was a response to both my daughters' entreaties wanting to know my history, I believe I've fulfilled that request (or demand). So for the present. I am going to put this to bed. I have added a search function in order that someone who wants to read about my experiences with the Death Squads in Brazil, or with the church in Akron, etc. will be able to find those easily. There is also, at the bottom of each section, an email link for your feedback, questions, comments. (If you use this link, it also tells me what page you were reading. Very helpful.)

I also do not guarantee not to add more later. If the actuarial websites like that in the Mayo Clinic are correct, I have a reasonable chance of living another twenty years. Something interesting is liable to happen in that time.

Shalom, Alaykum as salam, Hasta la proxima, Ate logo, 敬具

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