Monday, July 7, 2014

Transitions Tell Us Who We Are

How do we define ourselves?
Often it is based on our roles, either at work or at home. I recently retired (early) from my work with the US Army, while continuing my private practice as a psychotherapist. I am so thankful for these opportunities to express the meaning in my life through my family relationships and my work.
In recent weeks I've been updating my profiles on various sites, reflecting on 30 years of work, school and family and came up with a short list (work focused :o) to say something about what I plan for the future!
  • psychotherapist
  • teacher / seminar / training manager
  • clinical supervisor
  • chaplain
  • researcher (data analyst)
  • technologist / architect
  • web and media communicator

Monday, October 21, 2013

Appreciating What We Have

Returning from a deployment to Afghanistan is a deep lesson in appreciation. For one thing, I often reflect on my friends and fellow soldiers who returned to be buried here at home. While I am sad at our loss, and my heart especially goes out their families, I understand and appreciate that they lost their lives serving our nation. I hope (and pray) that we beat our swords into ploughshares (soon and in my lifetime), but until then I am proud to have served with real American heroes. It is good to be back home.

Working on the New Website

Transition is truly a process, but one where some steps are bigger than others. Getting the new website built and running was really a project, but one that I hope will help me help others! Check it out at

Monday, July 15, 2013

Missing You on Tisha B'Av

Worldy pleasure are like sunbeams in a dark room. They may seem solid, but one who has tried to grasp a sunbeam finds nothing in his hand.
-R. Nachman of Breslov
The 9th day of the month of Av in the Jewish calendar is a fast day and a day of mourning. But what are we mourning and what are we giving up?
We remember the destruction of King Solomon's Temple, the destruction of the Second Temple centuries later, and the many tragedies that have befallen the Jewish people over time, and we restrict ourselves from worldy pleasures, but is that really mourning?
When a house burns down, the owner is going to be in shock, but after a short time, they start over, and life goes on. I don't think they would set aside one day a year to cry about the loss of property.
We don't mourn the loss of objects, we mourn the loss of relationships. On the 9th of Av, we mourn the too great distance between us and the Almighty. In considering this, we can also remember that true joy and happiness come through our relationships. How do we move towards that joy and happiness?
The answer is also in the Jewish calendar. The month following this one is Elul, with the three themes of repentance, prayer and charity. These three will bring us closer to each other, to the Almighty, and bring us to true joy and happiness.

Monday, June 3, 2013

A Matter of Inches, Seconds and Miracles

The moment
you're ready to
quit is usually the
moment right
before the
Don't give up.
Often, in scripture, we read about large miracles. The Egyptian chariots are approaching, Moses and the Israelites have their backs to the Sea of Reeds, and suddenly the waters split. The Hollywood version barely gives us a hint of how spectacular it really was!
Yet we can also read of small, hidden events that have tremendous impact. In the Book of Judges, chapters 4 and 5, we read about a battle between a Light Infantry Division, led by Barak and Deborah, and an Armor division of the Canaanites. The Israelite Army took the high ground near Mount Tabor, and that's always a good choice. Still, it was 10,000 light infantry fighting 900 iron chariots. The outcome was uncertain, and the Canaanites thought they were certain to win.
Then rain falls in the hills, somewhere out of sight, and suddenly without warning, a flash flood in Kishon Brook and a panic among the Canaanites - the battle turns decisively with the Israelite light infantry overwhelming the Canaanites. In just a moment, when things are uncertain, a miracle occurs, and the battle is won!
I heard Colonel Dennis Sullivan recently say that "war is a matter of inches and seconds." A round can strike inches away; where you are a few seconds earlier or later can mean the difference between life and death. While that is true, I would say that  war is a matter of inches, seconds and miracles!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Monday, January 28, 2013

Heading into Afghanistan

Ready to take off and head to Bagram Air Field (BAF) in Eastern Afghanistan.