When I was a child, my sisters and brother and I ran wild and free over the land my grandparents took care of.
Almost 3,000 isolated acres, inland of San Diego, CA, bordering Mexico, we were the only ones there. It was heaven!
Practically penniless, usually barefoot, always full of imagination and creativity and passionate connection with the land and each other.
And I had my books, which were beloved sanctuaries, with stories full of exotic adventures and girls who conquered all sorts of suffering.
Heaven Had a Monster
But it turned out that heaven had a monster. My grandfather thought it was all right to incest his oldest grandchild.
One of the results (and there have been many not-so-pretty ones, can I just tell you?!) is that I’ve devoted my entire life, both personally and professionally, to reclaiming myself, healing emotional scars and transforming them into sacred wounds, and knowing I’m worthy of love.
Just because I’m on the planet.
Do you know it’s enough that you’re here? Are you aware that we need you?
It’s been my life’s work to understand how to keep reaching for the stars, rather than be swallowed whole by those monstrous experiences.
Tried drinking for a while. Guess what? That didn’t work out so well.
Got sober, which took a while because I had to drink for a while and then fail for a while.
Eventually, though, I got it.
I finally went back to school, but not ’till I turned 40. I’d never even gotten my bachelor’s degree. No one in my family had ever gone to college, or even graduated high school. My father had an 8th-grade education, and my mother was pulled out of the 9th grade to travel with a carnival. Her new stepdad, the grandfather I knew, was a carnie.
Finally, I got my bachelor’s degree, then my master’s degree, and finished my PhD, too. Along the way, I experienced a lot of other educational trainings, including Eastern wisdom traditions, Earth-based experiences, vision quests, and lots of therapy, and got introduced to astrology. I also earned to meditate.
I really started living into my life, but it didn’t happen until I processed and healed from the early traumas.
My Story of Grief and Loss Includes Owning My Story
Feeling my way through it all, I began coming home, to myself.
Here’s what Brene Brown, in “The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are,” says:
When we can let go of what other people think and own our story, we gain access to our worthiness — the feeling that we are enough just as we are and that we are worthy of love and belonging. When we spend a lifetime trying to distance ourselves from the parts of our stories that don’t fit with who we think we’re supposed to be, we stand outside of our story and hustle for our worthiness by constantly performing, perfecting, pleasing, and proving. Our sense of worthiness — that critically important piece that gives us access to love and belonging — lives inside of our story.
I got to learn how to live from inside my story. Owning my story of grief and loss has made all the difference. It’s been a helluva journey.
In the end, though, I’m blessed to be doing work I love, with people I love. I’m immersed in stories, all day long, every day.
And in the process, I continue to re-write my own story of grief and loss into one of redemption, and living an authentic life. I understand the power of living from happiness, and enjoying success on my terms.
I’ve been helping others hear the stories they tell themselves for a while now. Most of the stories aren’t horrible ones, full of wretched abuse.
The truth is that simply living one’s life can be a challenging task, until we learn where home is (think Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz and those fab red-sequined shoes).
Your Stories Become Your Life
You better know what you’re telling yourself, and notice how well that’s working out for you. Only then can you begin writing a much better story, living into the one that’s been waiting for you all along.
Please, don’t settle for anything less than fantastic and amazing.
My Story of Grief and Loss Led Me to Becoming a Therapist, and Helping Others Heal
I’m Melanie, the Santa Fe Therapist. I’ve found that doing the hard work of healing from grief and losses of all kinds can make a profound difference in either just getting through the days or thriving and living from happiness,
In my experience, one thing that’s very important is learning to hear the stories you’re telling yourself. And that can be quite a journey.
But when you deepen into your true self, you begin uncovering, processing, and releasing layer after layer of stories about how things are supposed to work that don’t even belong to you.
Then, you can begin replacing those unhealthy stories with what’s good and true and real for you. You’ll begin reclaiming parts of yourself that have been waiting for you to show up, and calm down some of the parts that have gotten really noisy and think they’re in charge. Those, btw, are always the parts that are fear-based.
Those are the parts that’ve been writing your narrative for you that you haven’t been aware of.
One of the tools I use when doing grief counseling is narrative therapy. Narrative therapy is about understanding how to feel emotionally safe. It’s a very cool (and yes, evidence-based) way to work with challenging experiences with current neuroscience findings and lots of creativity.
The Santa Fe Therapist Offers Online Counseling in Santa Fe, NM
Online therapy helps stressed and struggling women find the time away from day-to-day pressures to settle into their Wise Woman selves. It gives you the time to access your inner knowing and intuition, cope with challenges, and learn new techniques to help you heal and move forward with confidence and joy.
I strongly believe in the power of online counseling. Along with the research that proves its effectiveness, I see the positive benefits for my clients every week. If you’ve got questions about online therapy, please click here.
Online counseling from anywhere in New Mexico, including Santa Fe, Albuquerque, Taos, Los Alamos, Pecos, Las Vegas, Tesuque and El Dorado.
How to Begin Grief Counseling in Santa Fe, NM
You don’t have to suffer alone anymore. Please, send me an email, and let’s schedule a free, 15-minute phone consultation: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Other Services From The Santa Fe Therapist
The Santa Fe Therapist specializes in several areas of health, wellbeing, healing and recovery. I know that one size never fits all. My services are individualized to each client, and are based on your values, your needs and desires, and your goals.
I offer individual adult counseling and guidance in Santa Fe NM for: