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Posts Tagged ‘pre and perinatal psychology’

This material is copyrighted by M. Kirby Moore. Reproduction without permission is prohibited. Thank you for respecting my creative property! And I’m very grateful to have you visiting this blog! You can visit Kirby’s site here:¬†Wisdom Healing Arts website

I’m not attempting to brag or boast here, but when you put the causes and conditions into place, the results typically follow. And this can be true for conducting powerful healing work as well – when we work on ourselves, learn multiple techniques and modalities which lead to actual, lasting transformation, then it would follow that we could produce powerful healing sessions when we work with others.

And this is starting to happen with me. I won’t say too much, as it is my intention to walk the fine line between being modest and looking to promote my work.

I have been practicing Craniosacral Therapy since 2005, Polyvagal Therapy since 2012, Birth Process work since 2013 and other modalities as well – including Acupressure, Shiatsu, and a potent and effective Hot Stone massage treatment. Oh and I am starting to learn Sports Massage along with a number of other massage techniques.

But it might be time to specialize. And I know upon what I want to focus!

This might be a good time to take a few mindful, rejuvenating deep breaths… as I’m about to plunge into heavier waters.

This is what it all boils down to (hear me out: subtext read to the bottom of the post): when we have unmet needs, early conflicts (double binds) and unresolved psychological wounds, then we have shadow material. This makes sense – nearly everyone has some unresolved stuff – meaning everyone has shadow material. This can show up as blind spots, uncomfortable subjects, or meeting people who really hook and irritate us just by being themselves, certain emotions being very difficult to express, etc.

With this shadow material comes a lot of psychic energy required to keep it contained. Most of us want to appear normal, we want to assure our friends and family that everything is fine. So we become extremely skilled at containing, deflecting or suppressing our shadow material. And this requires large amounts of psychic energy! Huge resources are going into the darker nether regions of our psyche to keep our fears, terrors and even misunderstandings at bay. (Some of those fears though may just be illusions or confusions – they might be easier to remedy than you think!) Hence is it is easier to contain and deal with our subconscious underworld when we are younger – we have more psychic energy in our 20’s than we do in our 40’s!

As we get older however, these reservoirs of psychic energy start to decline. And then the compensation for our shadow material becomes harder and harder. Some of it starts to bleed over into our daily conscious lives – maybe we become more irritable without meaning to, maybe our anxiety is now impossible to hide, maybe we start having nightmare problems, perhaps we stick our foot in our mouths with more regularity – we become more raw, etc. And this is why many diseases start to show up around age 40 – especially those funny idiopathic diseases that the medical community cannot pinpoint the cause of. Can you image a Western doctor saying, “Oh your royal chi is declining which is allowing your skeletons out of the closet. That’s why you are sick…” That’d go over well! I can say more about this at another time – or better yet, sign up for one of my classes or webinars.

Kathy Kain – one of my teachers of Polyvagal therapy – says about the above topic: “moving toward equilibrium, it becomes easier to sustain healthy self-regulation… energy is no longer spent maintaining disequilibrium which allows us to focus on [healthy] other functions.” ~in her paper entitled Touching Trauma.

The healing facilitation work that I offer looks to gradually get to the root of the problem. And therefore this is slow patience-requiring work. But by going slower, we get to our destination faster (truly transforming suffering and getting to the root cause of illness). Do not expect instant results – you wouldn’t want that anyway (can you imagine a nervous system that took 40 years to get to where it is now, to shift radically in two weeks? No? I can’t either…) ūüôā But after 5, 7 or 10 treatments, you will definitely notice lasting results, greater insights and liberated shadow material. See the last few paragraphs!

We work with psychological double binds from the early pre-verbal stage of life, where we are literally building a body around whatever we encounter (if we are born in a tension field, then it would make sense that we take that tension into our bodies and get fooled into thinking that that is the only choice we have!! Ouch!). This is extremely powerful work. It is not for everyone. But someone who wants to do their healing work, who wants to transform for the better, who is willing to be uncomfortable for a few days while their body starts to transform (we can literally re-orient our brains and nervous systems by doing this work).

We walk the fine line between healthy self-regulation and activation as we repattern it – Ray Castellino, a pioneer in the Pre- and Perinatal Psychology and Trauma resolution fields and founder of BEBA – building and enhancing bonding and attachment, calls this fine line, the Leading Edge – where we stretch ourselves as we build resiliency and restore healthy responses to stress.

You have to have good support. That is pre-requisite. Asking for help is one of the traits of a grown up. As a healing facilitator I want to be part of your health team – I want to be one of several people supporting you (I don’t want to do it alone). I will ask you about the support in your life – friends, family but more importantly counselors, health care providers, people you can really go to with your issues and be heard.

The benefits of liberating this shadow material are immense. When you were conceived, there was an initial blueprint of who you are / were meant to be. But then various imprints (misunderstandings, unmet needs, unresolved wounds) covered that up – obscured your highest potential. This work seeks to reconnect you to your original blueprint, gradually. By liberating your shadow material, you also simultaneously liberate the psychic energy that was required to keep it tamped down, suppressed, contained. And guess what? When you have all this psychic energy freed up, you become more spontaneous, more creative, more joyful, more resilient, clearer and having a sharper mind. Who doesn’t want that?

Oh and it might also have health ramifications – in Chinese medicine and other complimentary medicine theories, emotions play a major role in disease (especially unconscious, repressed, tangled emotions). The A.C.E. study has shown enormous levels of correlation when it comes to early trauma leading to adult (inflammatory) disease. What happens when we resolve and repair these early unmet needs and repair and resolve the trauma? It would make sense to assume then the idiopathic (unknown causes of) inflammation would also go down! And this is another reason why this work takes time – true, lasting, joyous transformation takes time but it is well worth it!

The brief uncomfortable journey is well worth it in the end! The key is getting beyond that typical Western saying of, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!” I would change it to, “If I can transform it for the better, what am I waiting for?!”

Thank you for reading!

Kirby offers sessions in person in Central Virginia (Charlottesville). He also offers webinars on various alternative bodywork modalities, working with the autonomic nervous system, and Spiritual Astrology classes. In addition he offers distance sessions by phone or Zoom / Skype. You can reach him at kirby [at] mkirbymoore {dot} com

Comprehensive Natal Chart Interpretation

Kirby will spend 90 minutes interpreting your Natal Birth chart. You can chat about any area that you like. This includes printed charts and it also includes about 30 minutes of preparation time! These are typically done on the phone, via Skype or in person if you happen to be in Virginia, USA.

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Hello dear readers,

I still have the intention to work with (learn, teach, study, practice, dream) the above topic (title). PPN Astrology.

In fact, I just did an astrology interpretation (continued from a previous session) today that was mainly a PPN Astrology session. It was primarily educational. With that said, we mainly talked about Double Binds, Compensation Patterns, Tension Fields, Astrological Yods, what-healing-looks-like-on-a-larger-level, Outlet Dynamics and more (he was pretty far along in his inner-resource/resilience skills). Oh my word! – I should check with my client and see if I can type up a transcript of the 90 minute conversation. It was pretty epic!

So I just wanted to post a teaser… errr… I mean update about how we are doing with this Pre- and Perinatal Astrology endeavor.

Well because I am just back from a rockin’ Massage School program (a Heaven and Earth school), that means that I am slowly building up my bodywork practice in the area again AND studying for the national exam AND taking advantage of this incredible spring weather to go biking and hiking AND taking advantage of being so close to pure clean mountain air and streams where I can do Solar, Water and Tree Chi Kung with such ease and bliss…

So it might be a little while before PPN Astrology really lifts off. I’ll keep you in the loop however!

<little bit of a secret – let’s keep this between you and me how about?> About 11 years ago I was doing a personal Tibetan Buddhist retreat at my home, I believe I had a week off from school and I wasn’t working much at the time, so I did a little bit of Ngondro practice. Five fold path of Mahamudra Ngondro that is (basic preliminary practices). Anyway… I took my friend’s advice and sort of read ahead in the text – way ahead… Not unlike the sorcerer’s apprentice in Fantasia. (I didn’t lose control entirely, but I pried open my mind in a way I had never done before.) I kind of got a glimpse of the future and saw this wild, dynamic, potent Astrology modality I was meant to teach. I believe what I saw was Pre- and Perinatal Astrology.

It must be beneficial and powerful. Therefore I am abiding patiently until the right time, when there is a right teacher (I’m not ready quite yet), the right location, the right students and the right conditions. We’ll see if and what unfolds over the next few years. But I expect we won’t be bored!

As usual, thank you for reading!

If you want to support my blogging or educational or teaching or living efforts, feel free to make a donation below.

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Hello Dear Readers,

I hope you are finding my recent posts palatable and engaging. You should know however that we are extremely busy here at massage school – think we are busy most weekdays from 7 am until 7:30 pm with two one-hour breaks for breakfast and lunch. So if my writing has seemed a little raw as of late, well, that’s because I’m a bit raw ¬†=^P

Let me just provide a little context. Because of my years of experience of doing bodywork (Craniosacral Therapy, Visceral Manipulation, Zapchen Somatics, Working with the Polyvagal System, some birth process work), I made a promise to the director of this massage school that I would keep the angels of beginner’s mind and humility on my shoulders at all times. Most days I am doing good with that. Keeping my mouth shut, keeping my head down and overall attempting to take a modest position.

With that said, I told myself that the only subject where I am not willing to keep my mouth shut is if someone starts teaching about working with babies and they are saying the wrong info or if they are causing secondary trauma to half the audience because their delivery is faulty. So let’s just say I spoke up a little today.

So today we went through a morning of learning about working with babies. A woman with 30+ years of doing infant massage came to talk to us.

Let me play the devil’s advocate with myself. She is a very well-meaning person. She does have decades of experience working with babies. And she is one of the only resources for this in the area (teaching about babies in general). Also, she is older and I suspect it would be very difficult to retire on baby massage wages alone. So I want to make certain it is obvious I have compassion for her as a fellow human being.

Having established that… I want to mention ways in which she could have taught us in a well-contained, safe, resourced, settled, integrate-able manner.

To say everything I would like to tonight would literally take 10,000 words. And I obviously don’t have that kind of time (see above). So I will touch on a few things and mention resources for you to go look something up if you want more info.

Speaking of resources, here’s a good website to look at Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy, Polarity Therapy and working with the autonomic nervous system:¬†John Chitty’s site for somatic therapies

By the way, whenever I say the acronym PPN, that means Pre- and Perinatal therapy or birth process work. It can also refer to pre- and perinatal psychology.

Back to my topic at hand – how to present information on working with babies without leaving half your audience scarred by secondary trauma (or re-triggering primary traumas).

First I want to mention what should be a glaringly obvious fact if you want to become a birth educator of any kind: Do Not Talk About Activating Subjects without establishing serious levels of support and resource – I’m talking weeks or months or years of resource and support. DO NOT OPEN THE DOOR TO LOOK AT PREVERBAL WOUNDS without a sustainable amount of resilience in the audience’s system. This is basic information if you study with Ray Castilleno –¬†Ray Castilleno’s site for PPN therapy training

Why do I say this – do not open the door to preverbal wounds too early? Because we want this work to be kind, relatively gentle and safe. Key word there – SAFETY. If I don’t feel safe, guess what – I hop right out of my cerebral cortices and I am suddenly in sympathetic activation – that would be the Sympathetic branch of the ANS. And that means I am wary, looking around for threats. And learning goes right out the door. So does having fun, smiling, laughing with ease, being present as my body in my body – all that goes too.

That is number one. It has to be honored and approached carefully. There is a reason that Ray Castilleno only wants people in his trainings who have taken some degree of embodiment-promoting bodywork training or therapy, etc (e.g. Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy or Somatic Experiencing).

Second, a good birth educator has done enough of their inner work such that they are able to look for, discover and easily lean into resource and health. If we are confronted with a trauma that we have not dealt with in ourselves, guess what? See above about how we hop right out of our creative intellect and jump down into reptilian instinctual threat-scanning brain. Therefore we must have done a lot of our inner personal growth work – including and especially our pre-verbal wounded parts work – to be able to present this information in a settled, safe, sustainable manner.

We look for resources in people and situations. We give the doctors the benefit of the doubt – yes some hospitals have a ways to go before they become baby conscious – but the obstetricians are doing the best they can with the evidence-based medicine they have at their disposal. We see that basically all parents are doing the best they can. We don’t blame parents unless something egregious is going on – and even then we look for ways to make repair. This means we look for the good, we look for the health, we look for ways that people are coming together – connecting, creating and innovating. We look for ways to teach that are fun, that are life-affirming and that identify the health that is never lost.

This critique is about to get heavier, so gird your loins. In other words, find your inner resources – connect with wisdom beings, think about someone you trust implicitly (if you are lucky enough to have that in your life), think about your favorite pet who you felt really close to and possibly even supported by, connect with an animal totem if you have one, etc.

Speaking of resources, one of my main teachers in PPN material is Myrna Martin –¬†Myrna’s website for PPN training

So the educator today did not have a clearly defined intention. I’m not sure she even had a plan for what she wanted us to come away with. Then there was the fear spraying.

I don’t mean to sound judgmental or condescending or didactic, but I could have taught today’s lecture in a safer, more resourced manner. You do not mention rape, breach birth and prematurity within ten minutes of each other – period. The amount of ancestral (or direct) wounding that she might have stirred up in those ten short minutes is colossal!

Then she seemed extra focused on showing how unbonded (disorganized attachment?) babies grow up without a conscience and they are the ones who become mass murderers. Okay, saying that once is chilling – especially in this context. But then she mentioned it at least twice more – focusing on what is wrong with the situation or society rather than mentioning the dozens of potential resources out there about what is going well! Not only that, she mentioned the word serial killer at least three times and she actually named two or three mass murderers… Ugh! Serious overwhelm in the audience. Some people who are more numbed out fared better than the ones who are working on feeling their stuff arising and today’s lecture what too much to handle.

I only spoke up when it was getting particularly icy in the room or I mentioned several areas that things are better than how she was describing them. I also talked about the research on the Vagus nerve and how the autonomic nervous system can reflect wounding and how this is connected to addiction (I will write more about this soon).

All in all though, today I was left feeling that I was just ripped off. This massage school costs $8,000 in tuition for 12-weeks. That comes out to be about $135 / day. And I could have taught today in a manner that would not have left the audience lying around in comatose napping positions. It is not my job to resource, support and assist my fellow students. I shouldn’t have to!

Yet another great resource:¬†Kate White’s site for many PPN resources¬†Kate White is one of my teachers and she is the Director of Education for APPPAH – the North American Pre- and Perinatal Psychology organization.¬†APPPAH’s website (so worth a glance!)

So basically this post boils down to this: First, have the Principles in place such that everyone in the group feels safe to begin with. Go slow when considering whether or not to teach birth dynamics. If you are unsure, you should not do it. If you are triggered by the current news about school shootings (in such a way that you cannot find your inner resiliency and inner resources and inner feeling of being settled), you should do your inner work first before teaching. Move through your fear, terror, anger, rage, jealousy, etc with an established efficacious modality – like Somatic Experiencing or Birth Process work. If you are able to read the energetic field of a group, then make that your benchmark – you must be able to notice if you have started to overwhelm your participants or students. If overwhelm starts to show itself, you must have solid resources already set up ahead of time to help to move people back toward resilience and supported safety.

These are my two cents. I am not an expert. I have been extremely (!) blessed with my teachers and learning opportunities. And hopefully there won’t be too many more of these bizarre days here at massage school.

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A few months ago, I was speaking with a loving relative, when I told her about being a rare male in the field of Pre- and Perinatal therapy (PPN), plus offering biodynamic craniosacral therapy, Polyvagal bodywork, spiritual astrology and Tibetan Buddhist practices. I doubt there are many people on the planet who can offer what I am able to.

And coming up in January, I am entering a massage school which is more of an Eastern school of medicine, a Heaven and Earth school, than a bare bones (no pun intended) kinesthetic anatomically oriented school. There we will focus heavily on acupressure, Shiatsu, Qigong, Tai Chi among other beneficial modalities.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not complaining about my wealth of modalities and skills. But sometimes it is tough to clarify what it is that I offer. Why would someone want to pay me $75 or $85 / hour? Especially if I don’t take health insurance. Therefore I don’t have enough clients, some months I struggle financially.

With that said, I am a pioneer. Whether it is in the PPN field (because this field is so cutting edge), or the helping-people-embody area (this is fairly new as well when we bring compassionate trauma resolution work into the picture), or looking at PPN topics in the astrology chart (not many people doing this either). The work I do with babies and mothers, of supporting the family in a biodynamic manner – assisting mother (and hopefully) father to slow down enough to come into the same awareness of organic pace that their baby is in, this work is also quite rare – it is birth process work (PPN again) with biodynamic craniosacral and Polyvagal (working with the nervous system) work informing it.

And I need to clarify, concisely and precisely, exactly what it is that I do. This is what my intention is over these next 6 to 12 months. How am I going to thrive on this planet? How am I going to attract what I want and need?

Energy follows intention. So I need to be clear at all times what my momentary and deeper intentions are. ūüôā

I’m not sure what this blend of topics will look like. I suspect I will choose one or two and focus on them. And this massage school is a positive step in that direction.

Wish me luck! (and donate to my blogging efforts if you like)

Thanks for reading,

km

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There seems to be a Ray Castellino theme on here…

This most recent video discusses many things – including the functional range (how do we stay in the healthy range of our nervous system?), what it takes to be a Pre- and Perinatal (PPN) Practitioner, he differentiates PPN Practitioner from Educator from Trainer, and finally he discusses the differences between healing trauma, just receiving bodywork and actually going as far down the rabbit hole as possible to work through preverbal trauma (actual PPN work).

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I appreciated how he emphasizes that doing preverbal work, the deepest PPN work, whether it is preconception, conception or gestation phases, is like opening a barn door – the horses and cows will just come and go as they please. That is unless we are really diligent, we work with a very skillful professional team and we have ample professional, clear, presence-cultivating support around us. Otherwise doing the PPN work is messy. I like this description.

That’s because one or two of my clients and peers have remarked, “I have been doing this work for months [or years if they do it sort of part-time], why does it feel like there is so much further to go?!” That is why I feel it is appropriate to let our clients know what they are getting themselves into. This PPN work is the best container for healing our deepest traumas and unmet needs, AND it will take a minimum of 3 years to heal it if we have ample resources and are willing to lean into a qualified and skillful team of support practitioners. Because most of us (we are talking preverbal material here) resist getting support, I think it is more appropriate to say it will take at least 5 years for most people. There is unfortunately an imprint in most of us that says, “I should do this alone.” That is what we learned, it is what was modeled for us, it is what we built a body around. :-O

So if someone is only able to do a session a month say, and does not attend many birth process workshops or womb surrounds (a small group that meets for 3 or 4 days straight and provides the best container for bringing up deep material AND allowing us to integrate it at the same time), then I think this healing process is more like 10 years.

That sounds like a lot, but moving toward being a whole person, a complete being is so so worth it! In a previous video by Ray Castellino, he mentions that pushing aside our shadow material (repressing or suppressing it), for a short amount of time is fine. The problem is if we push it aside for years, then cells of our body start to also feel pushed aside. These cells start doing their own thing – they go out of control. Yet these cells feed on our bodies. And this process is called cancer.

Not trying to scare you at all, rather just pointing out the reality nature of our soma / psyches. Body mind healing.

Enjoy!

Meeting Ray Castellino

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This material is copyrighted by M. Kirby Moore.  Reproduction without permission is prohibited.  Thank you for visiting!  If you would like to receive a Spiritual Astrology interpretation or process-oriented bodywork, you can check out my website at www.mkirbymoore.com

As some of my readers may know, I have been studying process-oriented bodywork, pre- and perinatal psychology and Tibetan Buddhism for some years now. ¬†I have been giving and receiving treatments since 2004, and every day, I am amazed at how many layers there are to plumb the depths of. ¬†For instance, I recently received a treatment when the practitioner asked if I was a “forceps baby” – meaning were forceps used to get me out of my Momma? ¬†Yes, I was. ¬†So I am going to describe what happened next, but first some context.

I have been taking regular classes Рat least 60 hours of class time per year since 2005, I have been giving and receiving regular treatments РI need my self-care / bodywork maintenance (!), and I have gone through some intensive birth process workshops and somatic process retreats.  So I am probably not a novice anymore, right?  I am blessed and yet I make stop-and-go progress which is occasionally frustrating.  So this is the context in which I was receiving this most recent treatment.

So yes, I was a forceps baby. ¬†Keep in mind I am not a doctor, I’m not an obstetrician, and I am not licensed to practice medicine. ¬†So this is just for entertainment purposes or to be used as experiential testimony. ¬†After going through some basic listening stations along my body (feet/ leg bones / hip bones / ribs / paired cranial bones, etc) and then checking my sphenoid bone (the bone behind the eyes), she told me that my cranial bones were pretty locked up. ¬†I was feeling that. ¬†She asked if I wanted to try something. ¬†I said sure!

So she asked me to put my hands on my head, above my ears, and then she put her hands on mine. ¬†Keep in mind that this practitioner working on me has years of experience and she is certified as a registered craniosacral therapist, and on top of that, she is more of a listener and a healing coach than a “I’m going to fix you” type of practitioner, and that is why my body responds so well to these treatments. ¬†I am not recommending this to be tried at home – if you want a treatment like I am describing, you should research who in your area has studied some solid modalities like Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy, Pre- and Perinatal Psychology, Somatic Experiencing, etc.

Back to the story, her hands were on top of mine, applying very gentle “pressure.” ¬†Then she asked me to put all my angst and feelings about those forceps into my hands as I pushed hers away from my head. ¬†She recommended I make some sounds. ¬†So I did. I grunted and expressed my objection to anyone using a harsh, invasive, powerful force on my malleable baby head. ¬†And then we did this another two times, each time I was moaning or groaning or saying “No!” with determination. ¬†She resisted my hands a little, so this was not easy.

Then, after the third time, I told her I noticed a small, vulnerable part of me that wanted to cry.  She asked where I felt that in my body, and I said I thought it was in my gut.  Keep in mind that it is not easy for me to get to this baby part of me.  I have done years of work, and yet I think some non-verbal aged trauma (pre-one-year-old) is very difficult to touch and process.  So I was amazed at how such a simple exercise could do this.

Then she re-checked my cranial bones and she said I needed to take it easy for the next few hours as my bones had loosened up, but that I might feel wonky for a little while as a result.  And sure enough, that afternoon, I could really only do about half an hour of work before I felt a strong need to rest for the same amount of time.  It was like a magnetic pull to rest down!

I just want to express my little non-educated opinion on the subject of using forceps. ¬†First, I am glad forceps was the “worst” intervention used to get my baby body out of my mother! ¬†If a C-section was the next step, I’m glad they used forceps. ¬†And apparently, for babies who are sort of “stuck” in the birth canal, the use of forceps can sometimes be forced to be done blind. ¬†So I hope my doctor was very skillful!! ¬†And I certainly hope doctors are still skillful using this technique today.

With that said, the use of such a strong force on a baby, even if done right is an invasion. ¬†Therefore, I think it is necessary to talk to the mother and baby ahead of time – tell them what is coming. ¬†And just as importantly, it is necessary to have someone (a nurse, a mid-wife, a doula, etc) present at the birth who understands how to adjust babies’ cranial bones so that they don’t internalize that loss of control. ¬†I wanted to make my own way down the birth canal – but after 8 hours of contractions and pushing, the doctors decided things for me.

So there I was at the tender age of Zero, already developing a distrust of doctors, a fear of the medical system and I was already getting my sympathetic (fight-flight-or-freeze) nervous system geared up as I wanted to fight the doctor who had that horrible contraption around my head.  BLEHCK!!!!  No thank you!

And this is just one trauma that I experienced as a baby.  You know, I wonder if this (and other traumas too) is why I do not enjoy celebrating my birth day.  I always thought it was because I wanted to be humble or modest, but it might be more than that.  Why would I want to remember the most important day of my life when it was marred by complications, mechanical interventions and potentially insensitive doctors?  Yeah.

If you have read this far, you might need to take a deep breath. ¬†I am fine. ¬†Fortunately I have met with teachers and practitioners who know how to help me process all this “stuff.” ¬†I have overcome depression and headaches and other issues and I am really doing well. ¬†I am healthy and I continue to enjoy plumbing the depths of these psycho-emotional layers of what it is to be a body and be a human. ¬†Yay!

Thank you for reading.

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