This weekend I've been working on my application for the Clinical Pastoral Education offered through Loyola Medical Center in Chicago. It's a laborious process requiring both a personal history and a spiritual autobiography.
To be honest, I find it terribly difficult to start autobiographical essays. Sure, you could start with "As I look back upon my life" or "I was born in the usual way" or something cliche, but who'd want to do that?
So, I took a totally different and bizzarre approach:
"My life is akin to the recipe for Cajun Jambalaya..."
The entirety of my autobiography is held together by the controlling image of a Jambalaya recipe. It may sound strange, but it actually appears to have worked pretty well: my family as the stock and meat base, Irish music as the spice, twenty-five years of cooking time, and various persons tossed into my life (Enyak, Anne Hall, Abba Gray, Joan Nuth, etc.) like vegetables. So my bio accomplishes two things in that it tells my story and, if the reader is attentive, provides the skeletal outline to one fine recipe for jambalaya.
It's pretty quiet here at the house. Adam and Drew - two of my partners in crime - are away for the weekend and the first-year men are visiting Midland. I wrote quite a bit yesterday and today and plan to prepare my week's lessons tomorrow. In fact, I'm giving my first math test on Thursday, so I'll have to start working on that pretty soon.
It's hard to believe that it's already the end of September. I must admit to being happy about this. As much as I love teaching, I am really looking forward to doing CPE this winter and I'm completely psyched about living in Chicago. Not that I'm necessarily in a rush to leave Detroit, but it'll be nice to be close to my sister Torrey (who lives in Chicago) and, hopefully, to get involved in the Chicago Irish music scene.