I am a healer, or I try to be. Wounded people come to me for answers to their deepest, most painful questions. I don’t have the answers, not really, but they do, waiting inside to be revealed. I am merely a guide. It is together that we embark on a quest to find the answers.

The road can be long and difficult, and most often is. The healing of the scars of trauma doesn’t come easily. Its rocky path is ridden with intense sorrow and many tears, but the journey must be made. And I join them. I listen to the stories of childhoods broken, hearts destroyed, and families ripped apart. I am witness to the devastation of tortured souls, battered lives, the threatening darkness of deep depression and the harrowing fear of intense anxiety.

Sometimes the road is so thickly overgrown with thorns, travel seems  overwhelmingly impossible. What is required is so mentally and physically taxing, it draws sweat and blood.  When it gets like this, sometimes we have to rest awhile. So we sit…together.  And in the togetherness, healing happens.

Together we can find the broken child hiding, curled up, deep inside, take her hand, embrace her, and return to her the safety that was taken away. The security that she never even knew she deserved, newly awakened after a lifetime of despair.

Sometimes, together we can fight the demons that whisper thoughts of self destruction, words of hatred, and self loathing, and we can hold them at bay. This is what I have to give. These are the things that I can do. I can listen. I can teach new skills to help lessen the pain. I can help open doors long closed, to reveal new light. I can gently lead, but they must follow. Most often, they do.

But, sometimes they cannot. Some wounds are easier for me to soothe than others. I have my clinical specialities, my training, my years of experience, my tools, but for some,  my methods are just not enough.

Some journeys are not for me to join, because the steps towards healing takes a decision, a choice, a  commitment to doing the unthinkable, to walk down the path alone.

Addiction is like this. It is a destructive, controlling, all consuming beast.  It deceives and lies. It is manipulative and conniving. It convinces the soul that it can’t be lived without, and that life is better with what it has to offer.

And just when one can be strong enough to begin to fight, addiction rears its hideous head and breaks the spirit to the core. It lies in wait, to pounce and destroy any progress made, and it never leaves. Not until it has taken everything one has, to the point of taking life itself.

I loathe addiction. I despise what it does to good people. It destroys women and men. It takes marriages and it ruins children. It worms its way into families, and stays, effecting generation after generation, and it kills.

I have watched it kill. I have seen it take lives that had great promise and much to give to this world. I have felt the losses. I have held in my arms the broken hearted ones who are left behind.  I have felt the shame of having been unable to have stopped it, to have failed, even while knowing it was beyond my control to do so. Even while believing I did my absolute best.

I am a healer. It is my purpose in this life.  Each day, I open my heart, gather my herbs, my tools and my magic, and I walk into the deep, dark forest and hold on tightly to an outstretched hand. And together we embark on their journey.