Grief and Longing, Loneliness and Depression

We were supposed to have a holiday party together. Though it’s been off my calendar for weeks, I haven’t forgotten. There’s a snowstorm coming in.  We'd talked about how much fun we'd have sequestered at his place during the first snowstorm, so I am sick with grief and dread and missing him.  All day long … Continue reading Grief and Longing, Loneliness and Depression

Compassion, Trust and My Work In The World

I'm tired and unhappy when I arrive but one of my students is waiting for me; I feel better when I see her.  While I'm checking in my class, another student I haven't seen in months appears at the doorway.  Delighted, I come out from behind the desk to hug her.  While I check her … Continue reading Compassion, Trust and My Work In The World

Reverence For the Innate Perfection of All People

I prepare to teach class the day before Thanksgiving after more nightmares and very little sleep.  I'm so tired and anguished I can barely think straight, the drive to the studio is brutal, and I go to the door full with dread and precariously low on self-confidence.  There are out of town guests and students … Continue reading Reverence For the Innate Perfection of All People

The Barometric Pressure of Unresolved Trauma (1/2)

content warning: drug abuse, suicidal ideation I miss him and haven't heard from him so I send tender, vulnerable text messages.  His responses are terse and defeated.  In the language of marriage research, we've played out the demand/withdraw dynamic--except that I've set aside my defenses in hopes of helping my partner feel safe, and when … Continue reading The Barometric Pressure of Unresolved Trauma (1/2)

Emotional Triage and My Own Emerging Wisdom

I am on the phone with a local radio host for an interview about yoga and wellness for entrepreneurs.  She tells me she always prays before the show to center herself, so I am silent as she thanks the almighty for the opportunity to help people, humbly asking that others be moved toward healing.  Finally … Continue reading Emotional Triage and My Own Emerging Wisdom

An Unusual Apology from Darth Vader

All I have with me are my purse and the clothes I'm wearing.  I open the Prazosin and take one, then crawl into bed beneath a tapestry of woodland creatures. When I wake it is early morning, before my alarm.  There is a sense of increased well-being waking up in Margy's home.  I have indeed … Continue reading An Unusual Apology from Darth Vader

Attachment Avoidance, Love, Death and Dignity (2/3)

(...continued) content warning: suicidal ideation, graphic imagery I don't want this life; a life that's difficult and lonely.  I don't want to keep on with my impotent love, struggling for something I can't have.  I was so stupid and naive with my hope for this relationship and my own healing.  I want to die.  I … Continue reading Attachment Avoidance, Love, Death and Dignity (2/3)

Attachment Avoidance, Love, Death and Dignity (1/3)

It's Friday afternoon.  I have one more class to teach and Kevin* said he'd call me.  My head hurts, both eyes are twitching.  I'm exhausted, anxious and nauseous, unable to think about anything else.  I tried to look at some emails; I didn't care and my eyes twitched harder.  I barely kept it together to … Continue reading Attachment Avoidance, Love, Death and Dignity (1/3)

Birthday Gifts and the Simple Power of Human Connection

It's pitch dark again when I wake in the middle of the night.  After a good day full of support and love from friends, I'm disappointed to find my thoughts racing and breathing shallow--again.  But I'm not surprised.  I place my hand over my heart and try to breathe more deeply, which takes a great … Continue reading Birthday Gifts and the Simple Power of Human Connection

Startling Power and Perspective From Upside-Down

My ability to invert fully has not been a high priority in my recovery; it's been months since I even bothered trying.  One effect of my post-concussive syndrome is that while I retain my ability to handstand, an attempt results in nausea, dizziness, disorientation--or a crazy-feeling bout of crying just because I feel weird. I … Continue reading Startling Power and Perspective From Upside-Down

Sensational, Asinine Things Like “Blossom Your Heart Open”

Usually I wake a few times at night, blankets askew, irritated.  I've either had a really troubling nightmare or heard some bump in the night; likely both.  So I lay there, exhausted, frustrated, needing and wanting sleep that doesn't come.  Eventually the alarm goes off and I rise, grudging.  Some time later I'll unroll my … Continue reading Sensational, Asinine Things Like “Blossom Your Heart Open”

Healing and Unconditional Positive Regard

On Saturday morning I wake from disturbing dreams: of my abuser coming after me--and of my cat purring in my arms while I rub my face against her silky neck and say to my friend "I know she's died, but she feels real."  Of course, Kira did die and I'm awake only a few moments … Continue reading Healing and Unconditional Positive Regard

PTSD, Yoga, and Why I Hate the F*cking Gong

I'm in the studio with friends, colleagues, and a photographer for a photo shoot.  When I walk to the front of the room to teach my segment, it feels odd transitioning from student to teacher.  Before long I settle into my own teaching rhythm and get everyone rolling around on the floor, preparing to rest. … Continue reading PTSD, Yoga, and Why I Hate the F*cking Gong

Why Showing Up Early Is Terrible and Wonderful

I had an odd midday meeting between classes, and now I have an hour before I need to be at Durham VA to teach.  Coffeeshops make me uneasy now, so I figure I'll get some work done in my car.  I park in the lot facing traffic--I can't tolerate the sound of it behind me, … Continue reading Why Showing Up Early Is Terrible and Wonderful

Here Comes The Sun

That's not an unusual morning--some ugly dream and then I wake up feeling awful.  Naturally, I want to go back to sleep and try again--maybe I won't feel so tired and desperate.  I understand that each choice I make will either take me deeper into that black pit of despair--or out of it.  The coming out won't be fast, it won't be painless...

A Wounded Healer

I struggle with deep shame over my mental illness.  Though I'm very clear it is not my fault, though I know that this is a response common to trauma survivors--the shame is very real, very persistent, and very convincing.  It tells me that I am too powerless, too broken, that I will never recover or experience healthy love.  I am so afraid that these things are true, I'm tempted to stay silent in...