You may have noticed that I haven’t contributed a post to my blog since 2013. Here is the short back story. A few friends and colleagues suggested that I put my writing energies towards a book. I had never thought of myself as an author. So my parts needed about five years to consider writing a book about Somatic IFS. I slowly began to craft a few chapters and sent them to North Atlantic Books. I did not expect them to accept my proposal, but once they did, I was ALL IN.
My deadline to hand in a completed version of my book was March 2020, just as Covid-19 was clearly becoming a thing. An exponential thing. During that month my mother died. A week later my daughter contracted a serious case of Covid. My manuscript was handed over, and the world began to change. It became clearer than ever that we are all connected. George Floyd’s horrific murder watched by millions, along with the higher death toll of black and brown people due to the virus, shed a brighter and wider light on the systemic inequities and violence of a white supremacist society.
Now, almost a year after the publication of my book, my world has changed. I had thought my book would be my semi-retirement offering to a limited group of people and I could begin to enjoy whatever it is that retired people do. Instead, I spend more time in front of my computer screen. The IFS Model has exploded around the globe and the Institute can’t keep up with the demand. This burst, along with my book, and perhaps pandemic-related behavioral changes, is keeping me far busier than I imagined. It turns out that a somatic approach to therapy is not a woo-woo, marginalized idea that attracts a few aging white hippies. Many people of color as well as those exploring the benefits of psychedelic medicines are drawn to Somatic IFS. Many IFS therapists who have also studied Somatic Experiencing, Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, Yoga Therapy, Dance Movement Therapy, and Hakomi see Somatic IFS as a path to integrating these body-centered modalities into IFS. This interest has reignited my passion to teach and, now, to write some more.
For months I doubted that the two-dimensional virtual platform could be even a pale substitute for in-the-flesh, living breathing bodies coming together in all our glory and complexity. A deep connection with postage-stamp images of people from the neck up seemed impossible. But as it became clear the pandemic wasn’t going away any time soon, I eventually decided it was better than nothing. Every day I heard from people wanting somatic IFS therapy, consultation, and training. I saw the need to grow the number of Somatic IFS.
I designed a two-step teaching program. The first step is an experiential immersion into the five practices of Somatic IFS supplemented with small embodiment practice groups. The second step focuses on clinical applications, with demos and supervised practice groups. I bought a 27’ desk top computer and rolled up my sleeves to welcome people to join me virtually for a few hours once or twice a month.
More recently I feel the pull to write again. I have often thought if I were writing my book now, it would be a different book. All that has occurred in the last year and a half has made it so clear that we are all interconnected, and that becoming more fully embodied is a radical, necessary act; that our bodies, our health, our lives and the life of all beings on our planet depend on it. So I will be posting some new blogs on my website. I look forward to your responses and hope that some of you I will meet, either in person or on my desk top.