I have always been fascinated by people and why we behave the ways we do. This curiosity guided me through college and graduate school and set me on my path as a psychotherapist at the tender age of 24.
Twenty-four was too young, for me. I needed to be seasoned, tempered by life. I needed to do my own personal work, which at 24, was outside my line of vision. So life presented other options, and I spent years teaching and doing other things.
But the tumbler of life had some surprises for me. It always does. You know how you can let go of something, but if it’s really true and it’s really yours, it will somehow come back to you? This is what happened for me. It happened in 2 areas: writing and counseling.
I had let go of writing books when finding publishers had become too discouraging, but then found there was another book I just “had to” write. That book got published, was successful, and brought me back to work as a therapist, which I had also let go of.
My fascination had never died; there were simply some years when I was too busy digging down into my own psyche to truly be there for others. I needed to go through my own hell first. Coming out the other end of that, I found myself ready to provide the holding and guidance for others that I had received and which had been so transforming for me.
Now all that curiosity, all the learning I did while writing books and teaching, all the personal insights, all the energy that has been freed can be applied to helping others. I know how much a helping hand can mean.
Perhaps at my age, some therapists are coasting, but I’m just revving up. I’m learning new methods and trying new things. Each session is a discovery. And having left something I love and found it again, I feel deep gratitude. It gives meaning to the pain I’ve slogged through. As I say in my trauma book, giving back is the final stage of healing.
NOTE: Parallel pages are listed in the right column, but the opening page, Holistic Psychotherapy & Counseling), is accessible from here or the psychotherapy menu at the top.