Memories of my first few days as a psychotherapist-in-training at the mental health clinic were heady, exciting and vivid.

I began this aspect of my training on a gray, cold day March on 1972.

I remember meeting two bright Ph.D. candidates—new interns also—who clearly had more clinical experienced than me.

They would become good friends and mentors.

I recall being invited to sit in on a clinical staff meeting during that first week.

“What in the world was a staff meeting?” I wondered.

Even though I’d been in graduate school for two years, my world was still small, constricted, naïve.

A lot of my general knowledge about life came from my own limited life experience.  More information trickled in from TV, books and conversations with friends.

My young adult life had been honed on Leave It to Beaver, Father Knows Best and The Brady Bunch.

No staff meetings there.

Then there was All in the Family, and Mash. A little more enlightening but no staff meetings there.

I could see that a great divide yawned between housewifery and the business/professional world.

Once again, this was new territory.  I soaked in every bit of its wonderful newness.

At the staff meeting I saw that the mental health clinic staff was made up of two part-time psychiatrists, one psychologist, two social workers and a couple of occupational therapists.

I’d never met a real-life psychiatrist.  Dr. P an Dr. K were handsome, cordial and welcoming.  Not at all like Sigmund Freud.

Readers, what were your first business or professional experiences like?

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