Category: mental health

Release the Just

I recently completed my First Basic Unit of Clinical Pastoral Education. Part of my work as a student spiritual care provider was to be present with both long-term care residents and subacute patients. The other part of my work was deep individual and group reflection. In our training, we were often told to “just be present”. Sometimes all I would…

Reason To Get Up In The Morning

I haven’t had a break in nearly eight months. Last year I dove into full-time seminary studies as well as full-time work. The overtime I’d banked from working during the Fort McMurray fire evacuation allowed me that. It wasn’t the ideal decision, but it was the most expedient one. I made sure, however, that I had no classes during December…

Dear Jean: Water and Innocence

Dear Jean, It’s been an age since I’ve written to you. I’ve been remiss. I listen to your talks and read your books, and I would love one day to meet you. I’m sure enough pilgrims wander towards L’Arche already, however, that you likely don’t need this reluctant mystic tugging at your sleeve. Still, I wanted to offer up an…

“Do Not Worry” — Sparse Counsel for A Life Deeply Lived

Matthew 6:25-34 (The Cotton Patch Gospel): 25. “Therefore, let me tell you all something: Don’t worry about making a living—what you’ll eat, what you’ll drink, what you’ll wear. Isn’t the life of a man more important than what he eats? Think for a moment about the birds of the sky. They don’t plant. They don’t harvest. They don’t store up…

I Can’t Take It Back

Click here —  I had to preach this morning. Only this time it was for credit — the first of four between the end of this semester and the end of spring semester. Knowing I had to send this audio file in for actual critical feedback added a new dimension of anxiety, but dem’s da brakes, kid. Dem’s da brakes.…

Walking Through Colour: Contemplating The Restorative Life of Autumn at the Equinox

Have you ever had moments when you realize you are moving through pure colour? I have. About 13 years ago I was hiking in Banff with a couple of friends. We reached a small isolated mountain tarn. It was like a cross between a deep sapphire and a turquoise. We emerged from the forest, but across the waters were steep slopes…

What Mental Illness Looks Like to Me: One of These Things…

You know the little Sesame Street diddy: “One of these things is not like the other One of these things just doesn’t belong Can you tell me which things is not like the other By the time I’m finished my song?” Life is both blurry and vivid. Sometimes it’s too vivid: colours scream at you, feel too hot or cold,…

What Mental Illness Looks Like to Me: Drained of Colour

A few weeks ago I was challenged to engage in a photography project: “What does mental illness look like to you?” Intrigued, I puttered around for a few days wondering what in the world I could photograph that would be an accurate representation of something so touchy for me. And then the first of many “AHA!” moments hit me: It…

Confession

Finally. I’m on my last day of medical leave. After this weekend I’ll back at work, slowly re-establishing a routine, and continuing whatever healing process God seems to have me on. God. Now there’s a thought. God and I still are having words about the necessity of the WWF Smackdown that’s happened over the past few weeks. If God had just…

You’re Beautiful… and Terrifying

We’ve all had our “AHA!” moments when we read about the experiences of other people that so closely mirror our own. And when we’ve been feeling locked away and lonely for so long, the yelling is earth-shattering. It was just so for me today as I read a guest post by Alexandra Elle from On Being With Krista Tippet: Standing…