Written in a John Fox workshop


It’s never just about death
or cancer, or surgery
what the doctor said when
Anne asked
What will I look like?
wanting his compassion before
they removed her bandages
from where the breasts had been.
You will look like a man, he said.
He said I will look like a man!
she repeated.
I felt assaulted, betrayed, she said.
He checked his work,
the clean seams pleased him
and he left the room.
I was grateful, she said,
but now she wept, for the girl in her,
for her breasts, for her woman’s heart,
for the way we all want the healer
to sing to us.

Roslyn Strohl

One Word

Are you stuck asking “Why?” over and over, imponderables and unsolvables besetting your thoughts? Try changing “why” to “how ” or “what”.
How might I do that differently?
What might I chose to change first?
Who would I like to include on this change?

Daydream the possible, even when the thoughts want to interrupt and rein you in.
That way lies discovery.

New Horizons

I am delighted to begin a part time position at Hospice of SLO (http://www.hospiceslo.org). I see this as a way to extend my service in the community in which I have lived so long and happily and also to participate in the community of therapists, since part of the position will involve supervising interns putting to good use that 30 hr AAMFT training.
Hospice of SLO has a wonderful group of staff and volunteers providing counseling, support groups, and in home assistance since 1977.

There will still be plenty of time to see my private clients in Avila Village, my
beloved tiny respite by the Bob Jones Trail. (441 3918)

Am I Grieving, Sad or Depressed?

An Andrew Solomon TED talk

Andrew Solomon discusses his own experience and his research into what happens when genetic predisposition to anxiety and depression collides with triggering life events.

As he says, ” The opposite of depression is vitality.”. And if you are depressed, thoughts can lie.

If this mirrors your own condition or you have questions ,seek help. Sometimes the one life you should save is your own.

Hello sadness
I notice you are here today.
You want to wrap my heart in foil
or waxed paper like a burrito take-out

You want me to sit and warm the couch
to be still
to not let anything move
forward or back.
Yet fear grabs at my chest
sends my heart into overdrive
tightens my throat.
I am so tired.

I hear the little birds
and know it is Spring outside
and I imagine how I might venture out
and unwrap my heart and give it an airing.

And after that?
I dont know.
Lie down on the warm earth.
Let it support my body
Breathe for me.

One thing
at a time…



First Do No Harm

First Do No Harm

A doctor, like anyone else who has to deal with human beings, each of them unique, cannot be a scientist;
he is either, like the surgeon, a craftsman, or, like the physician and the psychologist, an artist.
This means that in order to be a good doctor a man must also have a good character, that is to say,
whatever weaknesses and foibles he may have, he must
love his fellow human beings in the concrete and
desire their good before his own.
– W. H. Auden