The Day My Son Flew Into The Sky

He had been waiting for this since he was two years old.

For as far back as we can remember, Everest has wanted to fly. Many young kids, especially boys, have a penchant for things that go – trucks, cars, trains, boats – but for Everest it was more than a stage; it was a calling. He wasn’t only interested in making airplanes fly around the room in play. He wanted to know how they worked, what made them fly, how a jet engine functioned, and the history of the aviation. When he was three years old he received a plastic jet engine that he could put together and within a few hours it was complete. This is what passion looks like. He’s blessed to have it and our only job as parents has been to listen to it, nurture it, and support it. And, as he grew, to get … Click here to continue reading...

A Christmas Tale of Woe

Note: I write about my parenting experiences not only to show by example how to honor deep feelings in children so that those feelings don’t morph into anxiety but also to illustrate what it looks like to tend to our own difficult feelings. If you don’t have children, I invite you to put yourself in the place of the child in the story and imagine it to be your own inner child. Whether or not you have children, you can read my parenting posts in both ways.

We woke up Christmas morning to a world sparkling in snow with luminescent angel-flakes shining in the morning sun. My body felt rested. My heart felt happy. I was ready to celebrate the day.

But while I was filled with gratitude and love, my boys weren’t so happy. The gifts that my husband and I had ordered a week before Christmas hadn’t arrived, … Click here to continue reading...

Pregnancy Anxiety

As I’ve written about before on this blog, one of the privileges of being the position of guiding people through the darkest aspects of their psyche and soul is that they share thoughts and feelings with me that they wouldn’t share with anyone else. Part of the reason why they share openly about these shadow regions is because they trust that I rarely take these thoughts and feelings at face value. So when I hear, “I’m scared I’m going to harm a child” or “I’m scared I’m with the wrong partner”, they know from reading my blog, even before we speak, that I’m interested in unpacking the metaphor that’s coded inside these common intrusive thoughts. In other words, they implicitly trust that I’m not going to assume that they’re a terrible person for thinking the thoughts that have plagued them with shame for as long as they can remember.

Perhaps … Click here to continue reading...

Holy Fear

We hear and read a lot of fear these days in psychological and spiritual circles. Mostly, fear is painted in a negative way as the energy that we have to wrestle with and overcome in order to live a life of joy. Most of the statements and quotes we read about fear pin it in the position of the enemy, the obstacle, the dark road. These quotes are accurate, but they’re only talking about one kind of fear. There’s another face of fear that needs and deserves our attention.

Recently, while reading Rabbi Naomi Levy’s book, “Einstein and the Rabbi”, the phrase “holy fear” leapt out at me from the page. She writes:

“There are two divine attributes that emanate toward us: they are love and fear. Love and fear are always keeping each other in check like yin and yang. Love is an outpouring that flows from the soul, Click here to continue reading...

Bored and Lonely

I shared the following client dialogue several weeks ago in a post called The Critical Moment to Break Free From Relationship Anxiety:

“What am I trying to escape?” my clients asks.

“Your feelings. Not the feelings that are attached to your intrusive thought and which you project onto your husband but your core, fundamental feelings of being human: loneliness, boredom, emptiness.”

“So all of the mental torture is because I don’t want to let myself feel that one moment of boredom?” she asks with more than a little skepticism in her voice.

“Amazingly, yes. It’s harder than we think to let ourselves feel that moment of boredom or emptiness without wanting to escape. When we really let ourselves feel it, it’s a death moment. It doesn’t last, of course, and the more we practice breathing into our painful moments, the easier it becomes. But we really have to train ourselves Click here to continue reading...