The Way In

Some of you may know a little about what brought me here. Not to Portland, Maine (I was actually born in Portland), I’m speaking more about what brought me to Craniosacral Therapy. I came through yoga, yes. And Cranio, like yoga, provided me with the experience of being with and working with my body, rather than against it. Before I was even a teenager, just at the edge of it, I got sick, a digestive illness, 32 years ago. I can remember in my 20s realizing that I’d lived longer with Crohn’s disease than I had without it. That marker meant something then. Chronic illness creates an interesting path, although I couldn’t speak to any other than this one - things seem at once urgent and vital and utterly inaccessible, far off. Perhaps we all feel that way. The urgency seems rooted in the awareness of vitality, of its ephemerality. Again, this is life, the seasons teach us this, and beauty is the most outrageous teacher, and doesn’t seem to give a damn as she flaunts her colors; they disappear and something else is created moments later - it’s almost too much. 

A dear friend and colleague said to me, speaking about Cranio, that we never know what the entrance point will be. In any one session there will be a moment where we are able to go in, to find and reach what we call the tide or the midline or that place where we suddenly realize we are where we need to be, the entire system starts breathing. It doesn’t just happen in Cranio sessions. Sessions provide a time and a place for deep attention and for safe touch, they are a container. But what I’m describing as connection or re-connection can happen in a sentence, it can happen in a conversation, it can happen in a walk, it can happen while washing the dishes. It seems the more it happens the more we build capacity for it, we build the internal rooms where we can connect with what feels right or true, even for a moment - a flower sticking up from behind a gate. And each one us has a different entry point and that point or way in isn’t going to be same every time - it’s living, just like we are, just like the world is. 

Back this up to a whole life, or a whole life up to Now, and we can use the same metaphors, the same language: we never know what the entrance point will be. I might say that illness for me was the entrance point to my life. It required something of me. And it’s confusing as hell. I was asked to work with something that didn’t make any sense at all, with permeable barriers, to make meaning from something that didn’t feel reasonable or safe - an obstacle that isn’t going away. Again, illness becomes a metaphor: what is being prevented? What’s missing? And all these round about (unconscious) ways we go looking for something that doesn’t have a name.  

At some point I decided that the emotional and the physical were linked. They weren’t two separate entities, the body a wild animal and the heart that lives inside it… We might take the time to talk about what we mean when we say heart - but not now. Linking the emotional and the physical becomes about making meaning, about telling a story. When do we know when the story is true? If I’m going to say something about my story, which is what I’ve started to do in this letter, I’d say the piece that was missing, the piece I was looking for was me. 

It seems that life is very much about learning to take care of the wild animal and the heart and the me, the human who has that job. All this comes clear through connection. Whether we connect to ourselves or someone else or to a tree or an ocean.. A cranio session will always affirm this for me, a cranio session has a very mysterious way of reorganizing what became confused, and of reconnecting what seems to matter.  And it’s not something that I was told mattered, it was something I already knew or had forgotten or knew just then for the first time in this watery alignment. We can call this clarity and capacity. It takes practice. It takes practice to resolve what is complex, what is confusing, to feel comfortable in a body, to love and be loved.  Our lives are very busy, very busy, complicated and complex. Through all the stress and strain it can be difficult to see. Through this work I offer to you what works for me. And a whole lot of love. As a side note, please always feel like you can talk to me about cost for a session, I offer that too, it’s part of where we are and what we do, it’s part of the way in.