3 min read

Yes, I'm fascinating!

Well, all right.  I'm moderately interesting as long as there's nothing good on TV.

I am not very good at talking about myself, so it's interesting to me to see what questions people ask.  These thoughtful questions is asked by Chani.

As I write these answers, I find myself wrestling with the desire to explain, explain, explain.  Rather than do that, I just put the opinion out there.

1. You wrote a post in July about heroes. How has your definition of heroism changed over the years?

I grew up with heavy doses of Superman, Wonder Woman, the Lord of the Rings and the Twilight Zone.  There were good people and bad people in those worlds.  Heroes worked to keep the bad people at bay so that the good people could be triumphant.

I don't believe in good people and bad people anymore.We are only human.  Uniquely stupid and incapable, we aspire to be God while we try our best to simply get through another day.  Human - not good, not bad - just human.

I refuse to cut someone out of my precious heart because I believe they are "bad".  It's MY heart that gets injured.

I wrote about my current thoughts about heroes here.

2. What do you believe is the most important element of healing a broken relationship?

Acceptance of ourselves.  I understand people because I understand what a complete jerk I can be.

I try to be kind.

I try to be gentle.

I try to be "good" even.

I fail over and over again.

I have a deep acceptance of my humanity and, so, it's easier to accept other people's  humanity.

That said, I can be a real priss about manners.

You fuck up, you better apologize or I can only assume that the nasty comment, bad behavior, wicked look, rejection or whatever is par for the course for you.  I don't want to waste even one moment of my limited time on an adult who cannot behave well.

And when I say apologize, I don't mean a blithe "Sorry". Grow up and learn how to apologize.

Say "thank you", "you're welcome", "excuse me".  It costs you nothing.

You would be amazed at what a little politeness and acceptance can do to any relationship, particularly a broken relationship.

3. You can choose one social justice issue to solve. Money is no object but you are the sole designer of the solution, although others can help you.  What is the issue and what's the solution?

This is a hard question for me because the premise of the words "social justice" imply right vs. wrong, have vs. have not and more importantly some sense that I know how things should work.

I don't.

The phrase implies that life should be fair or just.  It's not.

Life is amazing, wonderful, absolutely incredible.  I have so many blessings in my life that my pea brain and small body simply cannot understand them let alone appreciate them.

But life is not fair.  It's ridiculous to just something as large and incomprehensible as life by such a small standard as "fairness".

And how would I know what was just?  How would I know what was fair?  I don't have the perspective to understand what is just.

I'm human.  I live in a body that can only detect a small range of light and sound.  I can only breathe the air that surrounds me.  Everything that happens is filtered through a brain that is molded through my personal experience, history and genetics.

If I manage to rise above my own needs, wants, issues, and petty concerns, it's very unlikely that I will either see things correctly or interpret them correctly or even understand what is going on to determine what is just.

4. In a comment recently, you mentioned being a coach and a therapist. What is the philosophical underpinning of your work?

I think my answer in #3  says a lot.

My specialty is working with severe trauma survivors.  For all my current wrestling with being a psychotherapist, I do love the work.  I've met the most amazing people.  And I laugh my ass off every single day.

My biggest underpinning?   This is the "E" ticket.  The human experience is about feeling, even pain and sorrow.  Get over yourself so you can enjoy it.

We'd probably have to ask some of my clients to find out what they think my philosophy is... maybe I'll do that.

5. What is the most important thing to you about your faith? How does it sustain you in your darkest times?

My darkest times....  Why are we so drawn to the dark?

The Southern Baptists and Evangelical folks believe that through faith they will get to heaven.But me?

I don't need faith for that.

I experience heaven every day I am blessed to live on this planet.   I only hope to be more present to experience more of the blessings this world has to offer.

In the darkest moments of my life, I did not have time or energy to think about faith.  I was trying to survive.  Every moment, every breath, every thought, every action was focused on simply getting through one more moment.  Then all that energy was focused solely on crawling out of the hole.

What sustained me?  I have no idea.  By some miracle, when others didn't, I survived.

And I'm so glad I did.

This is a great place, folks.  I hope you get to see it some day.