Thank you for joining me and welcome to this month's edition of my Hope for Healing newsletter! I feel blessed to have you here with me. I welcome and appreciate feedback. Feel free to reach out via my website contact page or through e-mail at email@example.com comments or questions.
My brilliant and talented podcast guest (and newfound friend), Kathy Curtis, will be joining me on the show for a second interview to talk about her latest book release some time in the next few weeks. I asked her if she would be willing to share any of her blog pieces or written work with you. She kindly obliged so here you go . . .
A modern day skeleton dance
by (podcast guest) Kathy Curtis
Do you remember the skeleton song?
The foot bone's connected to the... leg bone
The leg bone's connected to the... knee bone
The knee bone's connected to the... thigh bone
Doin' the skeleton dance
If there were an updated version, it would go something like this:
The heart bone’s connected to the... hurt bone
The liver bone’s connected to the… anger bone
The brain bone’s connected to the… stress bone
Doin’ the mind/body dance
(The mind/body dance has been my muse as a writer and healer for the past 30 years, but I’m still working on my songwriting skills ;)
We’ve all heard about the mind/body connection, but it seems abstract to a lot of people. The idea of letting their body talk to them seems like crazy talk.
How does my liver talk to me?? I can’t hear it!!
The word bone’s connected to the... awakening bone.
That’s what one of my writing programs has done for people dealing with conditions that frightened, confused, depressed or defeated them.
Like the 30-something mother of two active boys whose diabetes diagnosis had completely shut her down. She knew she should make changes in her life that would make her healthier, give her more energy and enable her to be active in her two sons’ lives. But she was STUCK. And in being stuck, she felt helpless and guilt ridden.
As shared last month, here is another one of my son, John's, philosophy papers which resonated with my healing journey so I'm sharing it with you . . .
Emerging from Self-Burial
by John Wellbrock
Schopenhauer’s observations of the human experience concerning its pleasure, happiness, pain, and suffering, are similar to those I’ve made on my journey. It’s worth noting that I’ve grown and been taught to reframe most of the perspectives in the text that I found to be sounding familiar. That’s why I will proceed with a description, relational application (to my life), and analysis of only one of his observations regarding the pursuit of knowledge being the way we can escape the cycle of suffering.
We see Schopenhauer describe the ability to pursue knowledge as something that “requires rare talents” and “granted only to extremely few,” with a near-immediate follow-up saying that this ability causes people who have it to “feel lonely among beings that are noticeably different from them.” Now, at the risk of sounding pompous or arrogant, I have to open up about how terribly accurate this is, and how truly and painfully isolating it is. This truth shaped much of my adolescence and therefore affected my teenage and young-adult life. In fact, until recently, it had been such a painful impactor that I had learned to repress my intellect (or at least the sharing of it) out of what I would describe as a “social survival mechanism.” I want to be clear that I don’t declare myself a genius or “smarter than the next guy,” but when I was growing up, I was different from the other kids on my street or in my classrooms.
I was raised in an environment highly dedicated to and structured around learning. Many of my childhood memories are associated with the fun of learning. My mother was ahead of her time when it came to incorporating play into what society has often dictated to be otherwise. In addition, I spent ample time with my grandfather, who was a Jesuit apprentice for many years. As a child, I remember many occasions of profound, philosophical discourse with him, instigated by a curious little mind who wanted to be just like his PaPa. These environmental attributes naturally lead to improved academic intellect, but there was a side effect: many kids are mean to other kids who they feel are “smarter” than them. This is only a short paper, so I can’t responsibly dive into an entire dissertation on what that resulted in. So, I’ll say this: my intelligence as a child cultivated extreme social isolation outside of the home.
Those experiences shaped me, and I carried a lot of traumas into my teenage years. Eventually, I learned that most people just don’t want to talk about difficult topics. Even more so, there are way too many people who get upset and offended during attempts of intellectual discussion. So, for far too long, I put that all way. I went to work in the auto industry. I performed my daily, monotonous tasks, silently shifting my urge to be intelligent into product installation optimization. After becoming, what co-workers, supervisors, and parent company inspectors described as, one of the best installers in the nation and after having worked on every supercar and ultra-rare vehicle on the market… I got bored. I couldn’t repress who I was any longer. Thankfully, the pandemic (as horrible as it was/is) opened an escape hatch for me to burst through and emerge into academia again, which is why I’m here and why you’re reading this.
My point to all of this is that Schopenhauer’s words rang true, but more importantly, they pushed me into a deep plunge of reflection regarding a painful truth and lent a hand in my beginning to process it. Life is hard. It’s harder for those of us who think. But, for we who lost our way from others like ourselves (or who never knew of that connection in the first place), if there can be a gathering of strength to walk out of the thorny thickets of social judgment, if we can find the courage and sheer will to endure the serpent-strikes of venomous, fanged words, then we will find where we belong once again.
I recently joined Sadie Beyl on her inspirational free online event, From Mourning to Light. Such a beautiful conversation on healing, hope, grief recovery, and coping strategies to help you along your healing journey.
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