Transcription: Could I Be A Voice For Those Still Suffering? Pt. 3

Lori: [00:00:06] Windhorse is our innate ability to uplift ourselves and our environment by giving rise to a positive energy that is both relaxed and disciplined. Since 1981, Windhorse Community Services has integrated this understanding with modern conventional therapies, meditation and contemplative traditions in the development of at home whole person mental health recovery. Windhorse Journal is dedicated to the mission of communicating decades of clinical and personal experience to professionals, educators, students and anyone seeking recovery options. Please join the dialouge. [00:00:45][39.0]

Elysa: [00:00:49] Welcome to windhorse Journal Entry 77. Could I be a voice for those still suffering? In part three of this five part series, we again join the members of Julia’s longstanding Windhorse team, Janneli Chapin, Jack Gipple and Chuck Knapp as they discuss the 12 years of their working together along with their psychiatrist, Dr. Green. The team reminisces on the before and after of his time at Windhorse and the strength she found to harness a renewed outlook on life. We hope you enjoy. [00:01:20][30.3]

Chuck: [00:01:24] Welcome everyone to the Windhorse Journal. I’m your host, Chuck Knapp. And I’m so pleased and honored to be presenting today’s podcast, the conversation with a former team about the completely remarkable recovery journey they shared. We’re joined today by our dear friend and former client Julia and by Janneli Chapin and Jack Gipple, who were her primary team members. So Julia, your book, which I again, I can’t recommend highly enough for people who are interested in your path, but also specifically to learn more about the depth and complexity of cutting as a as a practice. In your book was reviewed by a colleague of Dr. Green’s, and he pointed out how completely remarkable your journey was and made a number of points that I’d like to ask about. The first is he spoke about your emerging sense of personhood and power that you described gradually developing. And I’m curious how you experienced that. And what do you recall about your emerging confidence and urges toward health? [00:02:25][60.7]

Julia: [00:02:26] I think that my divorce was the beginning of of that. That was a very messy divorce. It was very hard to go through. But I think Jack mentioned maybe the last time we spoke about how I was able to start really focusing, how angry I was at the fact that he was having an affair, that I didn’t know about him and how how I mean, I was in terrible shape, you know, things were really awful. And he chose to have an affair. And I mean, I think he really tried for a while. I was not easy to live with, but nevertheless. He left and I was left. Before Jack in January came, I was totally alone with my dogs. And I think that what you said, Jack, was true. I think that I wouldn’t have survived if my dogs weren’t there. I don’t think I would have gotten through. I had this incredible commitment to to Chloe and Shannon, to taking care of them, to just taking care of them. I felt very responsible for them. I remember my children. I was glad that they weren’t. Living with me because I could not take care of them. And I certainly did not want them feeling like they had to take care of me. They had witnessed a lot of very terrible things, and I didn’t want them to experience any other terrible things or kids. But I was alone and I couldn’t take care of myself. I didn’t know what to do. And I lived for my dogs, you know, taking care of them. And they kept me alive. They really did. I remember he was still living at home and somebody said to me, You’re actually washing his clothes and he’s living, sleeping with some woman in your washing his clothes. He was living in the basement. And I said, wow, that’s that’s crazy. I’m washing this guy’s clothes and he’s sleeping with another woman. And that was the point where I told him he had to move out. [00:04:57][150.9]

Janneli: [00:04:58] That’s an island of clarity right there, where you went Boing! What am I doing? [00:05:04][5.9]

Julia: [00:05:06] Exactly. Never occurred to me very well that. That it’s so true. How can I be doing that? And that was when I said, you, you have to leave, even though I didn’t know what I was going to do when he left. But. But he did. He moved out and. I was alone, and I couldn’t I couldn’t do anything. I, I was totally helpless. I didn’t know how to write a check to pay for bills. And so my sister hired someone to come in and pay all my bills and to write checks and to do all of that, because I didn’t know how to I didn’t know how to do anything. And it was an incredibly painful time. I realized I was basically like an infant. But then Jack and Janna, we came along and I started focusing that anger. And Jack and Daniel, he started teaching me things like I was learning how to cook. You know, they would come and cook with me and then come over Thanksgiving. They would teach me how to make thanks giving cook a turkey. And then they would come for dinner. I remember Ian and your girls would be crawling all over the floor. They were all babies, and you would all be cooked Thanksgiving dinner and then come over and share it with me. You know, Jack taught me how to make a pinhole camera. Just taught me how to do things that I just didn’t know how to do. Going through the divorce, they both came with me to the divorce lawyer. Because I didn’t even know what to say to him. And I would take notes and help me know what to do. And I remember going to court. I think you came with me, Jack. And I fell over trying to go up to the truck with the judge. And I was just it was just an incredibly painful time. But I had someone people to share it with me and to help me get through it. And then eventually I started to go to a school that was nearby and volunteer teaching kids who were Spanish speaking. And I volunteered this wonderful teacher who really was so generous. And I was there every single day, no matter what the weather was like. And that really helped me a lot. And then eventually, I remember Jack teaching me how to drive. Eventually I learned how to to. To live and do things. I remember you letting me drive your car. And even then, no matter how fuzzy my own head was, I was. Amazed that you actually trusted me enough to use the phone in your car, even though we were in a massive parking lot with nothing in the parking lot. So I don’t think I could do anything if I tried. But I was so amazed and grateful that you let me do that. It just made me feel like you had some confidence in me, which I didn’t have, and I learned to drive, which was one thing I never thought I would be able to do ever again. So all little things start to get me back into life. Can make me feel like I could live again. I would go to meetings with generally there was some kind of meetings that we would go to with a recycling, with some kind of a recycling group that you were a part of. And that’s when I met different people from Windhorse that were involved in that. It was in the evening and you’d go to them out with you and met different people. [00:09:23][257.1]

Jack: [00:09:24] The green truck wasn’t it? [00:09:25][0.9]

Julia: [00:09:28] That’s right, the green truck. And I just learned to speak with people and meet people and learn about getting back into being. Human being again. And it was a slow process. And I started to feel more confident in myself that I could do things. [00:09:50][21.3]

Jack: [00:09:51] The way you frame it as like I knew what was going on. Which isn’t back. It’s not accurate from where I sit. But I think I was responding to some some intelligence that you had that. You weren’t really connected to, but I. But I don’t know, maybe the two of us, when we’d be together, would kind of stumble in the right direction and have kind of confidence that we could kind of work it out together. But I would have to say, it’s very much it was very much a mutual stumbling in the right direction. So that that makes sense. [00:10:27][35.6]

Julia: [00:10:27] I think the things were that they were just normal kinds of living activities that we did. We went shopping, you know, and just did normal kinds of things, but things that were not normal for me, things that I hadn’t done. The other thing that I think was major was that I started to lose weight. Mm hmm. And losing weight, going from 200 something pounds where I couldn’t walk on the sidewalk, you know, and starting to lose weight. That was a huge. In so many ways, I was able to get around better. But also mentally that was huge. [00:11:18][50.9]

Jack: [00:11:20] And you lost that really fast. You remember that? It was you changed medications and stopped eating and were walking. [00:11:27][7.3]

Julia: [00:11:28] I stopped eating. [00:11:29][0.8]

Jack: [00:11:30] And you walked everywhere in town, you know. [00:11:32][2.6]

Julia: [00:11:34] Everywhere. And I stopped eating. I mean, I didn’t do it probably in the best way, but it became an obsession. I remember every morning I would I would leave a message for Dr. Green. I would leave him a message on his answering machine and tell him how much weight I had lost from the day before. And it was like an ounce or two ounces. And I would leave him a message every day about how much I had lost. And I would eat Cheerios. I lived on trees, and I don’t think he or anyone realized that I stopped eating. My sister wanted me to go back to the diet place that I had gone to, but I didn’t want to go back because at that point I was already on this not eating world. And I knew that I couldn’t. Continue to do that if I went back there. Right. So I didn’t go back. [00:12:39][65.3]

Jack: [00:12:40] That’s right. That was. You went to that inpatient program. Then when you came back, you were you were like on a mission. You were like a kind of born again. You had a plan and you had a little card at a restaurant. If you ordered something, you’d have no. [00:12:53][13.2]

Julia: [00:12:53] So, no sugar? No. [00:12:55][1.3]

Janneli: [00:12:55] Yeah, yeah. No. [00:12:56][1.1]

Julia: [00:12:57] I still had. I still have that. [00:12:59][1.6]

Chuck: [00:13:01] In the review by that psychiatrist, he he noted the the tremendous power. You had almost a mantra that the the urges toward life were stronger than the undertow toward death. And he questioned what your family lineage was around possibly Holocaust survivors and different people that had experienced multiple layers of trauma. But as a cultural thing for people, for Jews, that’s something that you that you lived with for generations, maybe thousands of years. And I don’t know, he was just throwing that question out. Does that resonate with you? [00:13:40][39.1]

Julia: [00:13:42] I remember thinking about that when I read that I did lose one family member in the Holocaust, but and my parents came over from Poland before the before the war, except one and my father sister. One of them didn’t want to leave Poland for some reason. And she was. She was killed in a concentration camp. But my and my parents would never talk about Poland. They would never talk about. Anything that happened, what life was like for them in Poland, they would never talk about anything. [00:14:30][48.1]

Janneli: [00:14:31] To me that’s so natural, that generation, you know, didn’t talk about their experiences or their memories a lot. The intergenerational trauma is just so intense. [00:14:44][12.5]

Jack: [00:14:45] There’s also an immigrant experience because my. In my family that came over from, you know, part of it from Norway and Sweden. They talk about it. They wanted my mother. My mother was told, no, you’re going to be in America. And we’re not teaching you the old language or the old ways. And, yeah, there was a there’s a kind of immigrant severing from the past. [00:15:06][21.8]

Janneli: [00:15:07] Yeah. The acculturation. It’s so intense, you know, or assimilation and trying to just fit in. And there’s some kind of oppression that’s going on there, too. You know, for I feel for immigrants and yeah, just how painful that that is. [00:15:22][15.6]

Julia: [00:15:23] After my mother died, my sisters and I were going through the things in her apartment, and I never knew anything about my mother’s education or what what it was like for her. I know that she came here when she was about 20 years old. That much I knew. I never knew if she had any education in Poland. I knew that she spoke English very well. I knew that she could read and write English, but I never knew how she learned that. But after her death, I going through her belongings, she had a rolled up diploma, this big diploma that was from elementary school. And she had gone back to elementary school when she was over 21. After she came here and went back to elementary school at night and she graduated from elementary school and she had this diploma from night school, elementary school. And I framed it. I have it hanging in my house. And it was such an amazing thing to me that she had the courage to go back to elementary school. Was a grown woman to learn how to read and write. And she she did. She did that. Education was always the most important thing that she, you know, kind of pushed on me and my sister. [00:17:07][103.8]

Chuck: [00:17:08] That is really an amazing story for an adult to do that, the kind of courage it takes to do that. And, you know, there may not be something that you’re consciously aware of as far as your lineage of family in the cultural Jewish lineage. But you obviously have an awful lot of resilience in your work. And we’ve and I know we’ve all experienced that. We’re talking about that. And in terms of where spirituality might fit in, another piece of that is, I think your wish that this process we’re in now be helpful, that your voice might be helpful to other people. And that’s a tremendous type of a spiritual value and a spiritual offering. Julia, what I’m hearing you describe was you’d had a wife, you know, kids, and you lived in different places and you had a full life and that dissolved in a certain way. And then you were just describing putting this whole thing back together. And, you know, Jackie spoke some to engaging that process with Julia. And I’m just wondering, you know, Charlie and Jack both, how was it to be experiencing Julia’s emergence into this and and strengths and choices that were being made, that went toward health as opposed to sitting back, like, for instance, telling your ex-husband to move out as opposed to shrinking back from that. [00:18:31][83.4]

Jack: [00:18:33] My memory. You know, from my reference point, I never knew you, of course, till I met you and. I knew you for some time. I want to say a month or two or. Before, like the percolating now emerged or started to emerge that when I first met you, I. You were pretty flat to me. I don’t remember having the dimension of who you were and then slowly being amazed, hearing the stories of like, Oh man, you were a nurse. And like, Oh, and because it’s not like the Windhorse method, especially back then, wasn’t like I, you know, sat down and got a. For like psycho social history of you. It was kind of like, well, just get to know each other. So we didn’t have I don’t remember any giant background, but even if I did get that, it wasn’t personal. So that slowly came out. Part of your recovery that I always remember is right. In this period you’d lost a bunch of weight and then you had a friend. We got you a bike. And I think I helped tried to teach you how to ride a bike, but it didn’t work or it couldn’t. But you had this this friend who was very long, you know, kind of very devoted to you. And he he taught you how to ride a bike. And I’ve always thought that it was kind of like the genie went back in the bottle. It was almost like your mind at that point, like using diagnostic languages you were you would kind of fall into like borderline qualities, like really the your mind was in the whole space around you, I think. And so you really dominated a space when you were there and then when you started to ride a bike. I swear, it’s like you came into your body and you weren’t. You were just in the vicinity of your body. You actually were in your body and you could balance and you could ride a bike. And my experience of you was that you kind of came into your body at that point and synchronized in a way that you were not at all synchronized before. And then I felt like you didn’t have that kind of borderline trait. You know, the way you impacted a room no longer had that quality to it. But I remember reflecting that to you and you said, no, you felt just the same as ever. But the difference from the outside was. You were having that experience inside your body. And before that, I swear it was projected out into your environment in this really strong kind of emotional field around you. But I that was my experience. I remember reflecting that you, like I said and and you like it was all the same to you. Like it was all chaos and difficult, whether it was outside of you or inside of you. But honestly, being on the outside, it was a significant difference. And I always thought that it was. It coincided with you starting to ride a bike. [00:21:32][179.3]

Julia: [00:21:33] I’m still good friends with him. [00:21:35][1.9]

Jack: [00:21:35] Yeah. Yep. [00:21:36][0.6]

Janneli: [00:21:38] I’m curious, Jack. You’re using this word borderline. Are you using it in terms of boundary or in terms of pathology? I’m not quite sure what you’re using that word for. [00:21:49][11.7]

Jack: [00:21:50] Yeah, I appreciate that. A cover like experience of being around someone with that kind of a boundary of their to themselves. It’s often, you know, described as borderline in that the person fills the room in a certain way. Like my experience of it is, I’m inside of their mind and their emotions. And I question my own mind and my own self a great deal. It to me, it’s a kinesthetic kind of experience of being surrounded by it. And then so maybe it is a kind of a boundary statement. And then when it all went back inside of you, it was more like, Well, that was there. And I was here. I was no longer. Uh huh. So that’s how I mean to use that term. [00:22:34][44.2]

Janneli: [00:22:36] Yeah. Yeah. It sounds like the boundary was much more fluid, and then it. It became somehow more clear or something. Thank you. I just. I wasn’t quite sure what you were meaning, so I understand. [00:22:48][12.7]

Chuck: [00:22:51] It’s an interesting phase, though, to appreciate that generally clarifying and coming into one’s body and synchronizing with one’s body more is is for many people a very powerful step in in being able to kind of focus on one’s intention, one’s life, health, coming into decision and disciplines in a different way. And so I’m not surprised that came up in the process of talking about emerging sense of Yeah, power. [00:23:20][29.4]

Janneli: [00:23:21] Yeah, yeah. We start to know where our boundaries are, you know, where, where we kind of begin and, and connect up against another person. And so that’s how I was thinking. You were talking about it, and I got really curious about that. [00:23:36][15.2]

Jack: [00:23:37] Mm hmm. [00:23:38][0.5]

Julia: [00:23:39] Thinking about that terminology for me, I think I had I had no boundaries in the sense that everything would just come into me at I had no ability to filter anything out. I had no boundaries for myself. You know, I couldn’t I couldn’t stop obsessions from just coming in from everywhere. I had no kind of outer boundaries. Everything would just. Go in from the environment, and I couldn’t protect myself from anything. And later on, the bike gave me some sense of being able to control things in some way. So that gave me a bamboo cradles. Also learning how to live in the world a little bit. Learning how to cook, learning how to write a track, learning how to drive. Even though they were not well developed, they were getting me back to a life that I had had. If for that, I never thought I would ever get back to. It wasn’t that fluidity of everything just in and out. I was more I had more boundaries as a person. I knew a little bit more about who I was. Everything wasn’t just signs all over the place. [00:25:22][103.2]

Jack: [00:25:23] That was my experience from my side of things. [00:25:24][1.8]

Julia: [00:25:25] Yeah. So I think riding the bike was one thing, but I think all of the other things as well. [00:25:30][5.0]

Jack: [00:25:31] Riding the bike was that it was the catalyzing thing because it was very somatic. It was you ride a bike, you actually have to be in your core, you have to be in your body or you can’t balance a bike. And I have some visual memories of you. It’s been very challenging balancing a bike when you are learning it, you know, just like any balance. [00:25:53][21.4]

Julia: [00:25:53] Balance, physical balance was a problem. But I also had to really pay attention to crossing the road, and I had to be very much aware of my environment and be aware of everything outside of me. And that was a skill I didn’t have that wasn’t well developed at that time. So I had a record of that. [00:26:17][23.5]

Chuck: [00:26:18] This brings a couple of things together. So much of what you described, Julia, along with the bicycle, had a physical component to it. Cooking, writing, a check, etc., moving across a sidewalk. There’s all sorts of things that I think help our minds kind of order and slow down a little bit and find a body of engagement for a mind that’s racing around and not feeling a lot of boundaries. It also lines up with something that the doctor who wrote that review said about the interaction between the work outside and the community and the work that Dr. Green was doing in therapy, which was, of course, more verbal and mental, and it’s in its work. But so the combination of the whole physical kind of communication and mind continuum of your life was being attended to and drawn into some kind of a more of a synchronized way of working together. That makes sense. [00:27:19][61.3]

Julia: [00:27:20] Yes. [00:27:20][0.0]

Chuck: [00:27:21] Julia, you were moving. More into ordinary life, as you’re describing. And at some point, there was some. Parallel process of that happening, moving into more ordinary activity. And I think the cutting starting to diminish. Does that resonate with you, all those experience of that period? [00:27:48][27.2]

Jack: [00:27:51] Do you remember Julia when you stopped cutting? But when did that leave you? Because I remember at one point later you were horrified that you could even do that. You said you couldn’t even do that. Now. [00:28:01][10.1]

Janneli: [00:28:03] You said. [00:28:03][0.2]

Julia: [00:28:04] The cut. The cutting. The cutting stopped at a very specific time. I mean, I think all of that. Coincided in a way, but. Because I was. I don’t know. I’m sure that they were all related, but my my work with Dr. Green was going on simultaneously with my work with all of you. And over time, I was able to start talking about what had happened with the whole sexual abuse situation that had happened when I was a child. I haven’t been able to talk about that at all for a very long time, and every time he would bring it up, I would be cutting myself up to ribbons. And so we stopped talking for a long time. And every once in a while, you know, he would kind of dabble with it just to see where things were. But as I think I got stronger, I started to be more able to talk about it. And I’m sure that, you know, looking looking at it now, just thinking about how we were progressing with other things in my life, what was happening at the same time it stopped Ukraine. I was stronger and starting to talk more about what had happened. He had this mantra. He would say this over and over and over and over again ad nauseum, that I was a child and he was the adult and I was the child and he was the adult. [00:29:52][107.9]

Jack: [00:29:53] You’re talking about the man who abused you. [00:29:54][1.2]

Julia: [00:29:55] Yes. Yes. And I was a child. And what he did was wrong. And no matter, you know, I always felt guilty. Did I did I do something to entice him? I mean, I was a little kid, you know, but I felt very guilty. Did I do something that that led him on, that made him feel like this is what I wanted. Even though I was 12. And so Dr. Green would say that over and over and over again in one way or another, that it didn’t matter what I did. You know, that he he was an adult and he needed to be a responsible adult, and he wasn’t. And over time, I was able to hear that. And I was able to start to accept that on some level and to believe that. And to stop blaming myself. And just start realizing that I not. Done anything wrong and that it wasn’t my fault. And once that happened, I stopped cutting. I never cut myself again. And listening to what we’re talking about now, I think all those things happened at the same time. I started to develop my sense of being a person again and being able to get outside into life and be able to function as as a person outside of just being in my head wherever I was. I don’t feel responsible. I don’t feel like I was responsible for that. But I did from so many of those years growing up that destroyed me. And I, I never told anyone because I protected him, because it was my fault, not his. You know, I mean, that’s the mind of a child, but could be the mind of anybody, an adult. Does it matter? It’s not. I don’t think it’s age related necessarily. [00:32:08][132.9]

Chuck: [00:32:09] Julia, when you came out of that long nightmare of self-blame like that and cutting. So once you were through with the cutting, Julia, did you go back and have any contact with the person who had abused you and any people around that. [00:32:26][16.6]

Julia: [00:32:27] After at the end? No. [00:32:29][2.0]

Chuck: [00:32:29] You let that go. [00:32:30][0.5]

Julia: [00:32:32] So the one thing that I that I did do was that I and this was done. I don’t know if it was the right thing to do or not, but my ex-husband and I decided to tell our children that that had happened. And we told them that I had been sexually abused because that had affected their lives so dramatically because of what had happened to me. And so we felt that they had a right to know something. [00:33:11][39.1]

Chuck: [00:33:12] You know. [00:33:12][0.2]

Julia: [00:33:14] And so we told them they were pretty much grown up. At that time, they were grown up. And we told them not in any detail, but just. Tell them about it. [00:33:26][12.7]

Chuck: [00:33:27] Was that helpful for you? [00:33:28][0.9]

Julia: [00:33:28] I don’t know. It was helpful in the sense that I, I felt terribly guilty about what I had done to my children. And I felt like it was maybe giving them a little bit of an explanation of what had happened. I don’t know. I don’t know if it was the right thing to do or not. But I felt I owed them something. I didn’t want them to think it was anything that they had done that was their fault. And I wanted them to have some understanding of what had happened to me and maybe what had made me go through. The things that I had gone through. [00:34:10][41.7]

Chuck: [00:34:11] Yeah. Yeah. Once. Julia, your sense of kind of power and coming into your body was happening. I might ask about moving back into the world, the process of moving back into the world, which I think there is the volunteerism you’d mentioned, Julia, but was it would there be more to to talk about there that would be useful? Do you think it. [00:34:35][24.2]

Julia: [00:34:35] Might be important to say that it was not a smooth process, it was an up and down process. Sometimes I would bite off more than I could chew, and it was not easy all the time I would. I went back to teaching and it was way more than I could handle. And I liked teaching. I remember Jack came out with me to the school that I taught at, and I just stayed there for Pepper, for save the teachers, and sat in her class for a while and just kind of stayed there. And and then when I was just and then we, I had a bar car because I had to get there. And so that that was a. A big thing because not only did I have to learn how to drive, but I had to actually buy a car and drive there. It was quite far from where I lived, and that was terrifying. So I had to practice driving and getting getting there. It was going from Boulder to Denver. So that was a big thing. And then I had to get my job back. You know, because I had disappeared one day. I never showed up for work one day when I had that, you know, when I was driving down the road without looking and I ended up in the hospital. All those years that I was working at that same school. And. And I just never. No. And I never went back there. I don’t know what happened. I don’t know what my ex-husband told them. But, you know, I had ended up in the hospital, and that was the end of my working there for for years and years and years. And so all of those years later, I was trying to get my job back. And so I had to then go back and talk to the director of the school. And that was terrifying. Would he hire me back again? And he was incredibly nice and didn’t really ask me about what had happened. And I’m guessing that he knew what happened. He said, let’s give it a try. Let’s see how it goes and let’s try. For whatever a month or whatever. And we’ll see if things work out. And then I was there for 25 years until I retired. So. So he was incredibly generous in giving me that opportunity to do that again. [00:37:19][163.9]

Jack: [00:37:20] However, you were very self-critical, like you are really hard on yourself and moving up through the because you will be taught a kind of a. The people who are just learning English. Right. And then you moved your way up and that. Each level, you had a lot of self doubt and self attack and you are you are way harder on yourself than anybody. And then I would you’d kind of encounter something and then it would go really well and people thought really highly of you. And I mean, you didn’t. My memory, you know, of course, it was all based on what you told me about it was you kind of repeatedly you’re very determined. You repeatedly came up against these big challenges and you were ready to quit many times. And you just stayed there. You kept going, had had loyal friends among your students and teachers. [00:38:16][55.8]

Julia: [00:38:17] Well, I remember thinking, you know, I got through all of these terrible things that had happened to me. And I and I got through all that cutting and shock treatments. And, and I somehow I, I got through all of that I can get through teaching ESL. And, you know, I try to really give myself talking shouldn’t, you know, I it was it was hard, but I, you know, I knew that I had gotten through so many things that were so much harder than teaching a grammar class. [00:38:53][35.6]

Chuck: [00:38:54] That point about being acquired and the degree of difficulty and the fear. But going into the fear, I mean, that’s so valuable to to to hear and what it takes to actually come back and to keep going into territory that. You’re not familiar with, you’re not sure you’re going to succeed in it, but you keep trying. We’ve been talking about your health emerging and then cutting, stopping and moving back into life and rousing your energy to come back. And, you know, one of the most basic principles of Windhorse and contemplative psychology all together is that people are fundamentally sane, fundamentally healthy. And, you know, part of our job is to really help to keep looking for ways to have a dialog and relationship with a person’s health and invite that to be much more part of the relationship. But just activity in life all together. And I don’t know. I’m wondering for all of you, what was your awareness like of Julia’s health as it was starting to show itself? What was the process like of of being more in in relationship with that part of her? That part of you also, Julio. [00:40:13][78.7]

Janneli: [00:40:16] For me, one thing I would see is this genuine compassion that you had for my family, especially my son, my partner, and you. You really cared about what was happening to them and you would ask me about them. And I felt like. You. I always felt you were a very compassionate person, even in the beginning, even when I was just getting to know you. But I feel like it it became it came forward more as you started to heal and work through some of the trauma. And I just yeah, I it sticks out in my mind that there was this. These ways that you would want to know about me and what was happening in my life. And I don’t know. There was there’s just that warmth would really come through and. That’s what I remember. [00:41:18][61.8]

Jack: [00:41:24] I agree. [00:41:24][0.3]

Janneli: [00:41:25] Sense of humor. Oh, sorry. Yeah, and sense of humor. I mean, that was always there, too, even in the beginning. But there was more humor that was coming out. And I kept seeing these. Ways that your mind would bubble up with insight and with wakefulness. And we call them islands of clarity. They just kept accumulating in a way where the aperture on the camera was getting bigger and bigger. So as. More and more available. I felt those insights and that wakefulness. [00:41:58][32.7]

Jack: [00:42:00] I totally agree. And there’s like gathering confidence and really your levels of independence and confidence went beyond where they had ever been in your life. Right? That you you had to live alone and you had to your house was a couple thousand square foot house, you know, in Boulder that you had to learn to manage and take care of all this maintenance stuff. I remember once your furnace shut down because the filter got so full of the furnace filter was so full of dog hair, it just shut the whole thing down in the middle of the winter and it was like, Yeah, you have to change the furnace filter. And then after that you change furnace filters and and then eventually you moved to Denver and really back to remember you said that the crickets in the darkness in Boulder always kind of scared you. And then when you moved to Denver, where it was like sirens and you were like, you’re like back in your element, it was like, oh, yeah, just managing your life, you know? And, and like you said, driving to and from work. And I think that this whole period of your life, you’ve lived more independently than you ever have. Right? [00:43:06][66.8]

Julia: [00:43:08] Right? [00:43:08][0.0]

Jack: [00:43:08] Yeah. [00:43:08][0.0]

Chuck: [00:43:11] I’d like to chip in on this a bit, because, Julia, you and I met, right? You know, I think I was the first person to meet you. Yeah. [00:43:20][9.1]

Julia: [00:43:20] That’s right. [00:43:21][0.2]

Chuck: [00:43:21] Yeah. And we met not for a long time, but I, you know, maybe the first couple of months or something, we’d get together and talk about how to develop the team and we’d have breakfast or lunch someplace. So in Boulder that I used to really enjoy it, but I wasn’t around too to spend a lot of time with you. But I was completely struck in terms of this notion of a person’s health and what you feel and what you see with a person’s health sometimes. I was immediately struck by how compelling it was to be with you. I really liked being with you and on an outward level you weren’t necessarily giving a lot that was easy to be with. You could be pretty grumpy and clearly you weren’t having a good time. But I really liked being with you and I look forward to being with you. And I was very curious about that. I was really curious about you. And and then also I remember what it was like that I had to be really attentive to how my mind was working with you because you didn’t put up with me kind of lobbing too many inaccurate or just stupid niceties your way. You just weren’t tolerating that very much, which I liked a lot. So it made me pay attention to my own mind in a really bright way. And so that was to me, another indication. And there’s also then later on I was I became really aware, you know, for Channel of you and Jack, how much devotion they had for you, just like they were really you guys were really clicked in hard together. The relationships were really powerful. And, you know, I know both of you are very sensitive to your own experience. And so something was going on in the relationships that seemed very compelling for you. So all that kind of stuff was, was before, you know, you came into your body and it became more of a formed situation, as you’ve been describing. All of that was just raw material of it felt like the potential or not the potential, but the kind of the raw material of health intermixing with all of this other difficulty. And then at some point generally to your point about islands of clarity, those things started to be more frequent in the environment. And all of a sudden, Julia, your life, I shouldn’t say all of a sudden, but over time your life started to take a form that really had a forward direction. [00:45:46][145.5]

Julia: [00:45:49] I think one of the things that happened was Jack and Jan were very involved with my therapy with Dr. Green. It wasn’t a separate kind of entity. Know, it wasn’t that I saw Dr. Green, whatever, three times a week and Jack. And generally outside of that, they often came to my sessions with Dr. Green and they were very integrated. And that was that was very, I thought, really important because. It was very important for me to feel like they were integrated, that they all knew each other. And it was I don’t know how to express it, but that we were all working together as a team or a group, and that that was a very important thing for me because I would talk about them all the time and I would talk about Dr. Green to Jack and Janneli, and I didn’t want it to be like strangers. I wanted it to be like one group, like a family. So I think that the fact that they would come not all the time, but but frequently did that really meant a lot to me that they knew each other. And I remember, you know, I didn’t see you a lot after the beginning, but I remember one night I tried to, you know, I had I was having a very bad time and I wasn’t able to get to get Jack or generally and and so I page you, Chuck, and you responded and you came over to my house and it was in the evening I around maybe eight or 9:00. And you spent hours with me, as I recall, and we move around for a long time and ended up somehow at your office thing. And then you called Dr. Green and it was like everybody was all connected. And you said, before I take you home or whatever was happening, you called Dr. Green and spoke with him. And first of all, that you did, that was something I never forgot. And that meant so much to me. And that you included Dr. Green. It just felt very safe for me. I guess that’s the word that comes up is that I felt very safe, that you were all working together and I felt safe. So that was a very important thing for me. I think it just goes back to the importance to me of relationships and how important the relationships that we had before they were they were critical. We. They were the most important thing. Relationships. [00:49:10][201.6]

Chuck: [00:49:12] Julia You just did a tour around some of the ways that the relationships worked on the team. And one of the things that I think is really critical in a team is, is the coordination of the relationships. And there to be like, for instance, it wasn’t just you meeting with Dr. Green and then you meeting with generally in chat, but you brought them together. And then basically it’s kind of like the way our team meetings work. We have times where people come together. Sometimes the clients part of that, sometimes they’re not. But it’s a way for the group to interact and to be synchronized more and together more with you. You had a type of an insistence that I think was part of the strength of the whole thing, because you wanted to be part of that, too. You didn’t want them just meeting without you. You wanted to actually be part of the whole mix, which I think was part of how I experienced your strength. And I think that really worked well in your team in terms of getting Dr. Green and Jillian Jack together. So. I’m glad you mentioned that. Thank you all so much. [00:50:17][65.6]

Elysa: [00:50:28] Thank you for listening. To Windhorse Journal Entry 77. Stay tuned for next month’s episode. Part four of this five part series to hear the continued conversation about Julia’s inspiring story. [00:50:40][11.7]

Lori: [00:50:52] Windhorse Journal is a publication of Windhorse Community Services supporting recovery from mental health challenges at home and in the community since 1981. [00:50:52][0.0]