Armenian Genocide, Chronic Fatigue, and Creativity

Ashley Kalagian Blunt is the author of How to Be Australian, and My Name Is Revenge. Her writing has been published widely. An award-winning speaker, she has a Master of Research in creative writing. Originally from Canada, she lived and worked in South Korea, Mexico and Peru before moving to Sydney, Australia. She lives with chronic illness. 

Ashley’s Website, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter

  Books: My Name is Revenge, How to be an Australian

Armenian Genocide

Consequences of Denial by Aida Alayarian

German extermination of the Herero and Namaqua peoples of Western Africa

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Don’t Look Up, (2021, Netflix) Adam McKay, Director, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep, Cate Blanchett

James and Ashley Stay at Home podcast on Apple

Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy (CIDP)

Episode # 9 The Healing Power of Creativity with Karin Foxwell, Art Therapist

Sarah Sentilles, Stranger Care: A Memoir of Loving What Isn’t Ours

David Husk Wanbli Weiden, Winter Counts

Wind River, (2017) Taylor Sheridan, Director, Jeremy Renner, Elizabeth Olsen, Graham Greene, Gil Birmingham

“Humans are not ideally set up to understand logic; they are ideally set up to understand stories.” ~ Roger C. Shank, Cognitive Scientist

Patreon

I’m so passionate about stories that I created the Story-Power podcast and Patreon communities so I’d have an excuse to talk story with other story lovers. If you’re passionate about stories too, and want to talk about what you’ve learned from your favorites, come join me at patreon.com/StoryPower.

PodMatch

This episode is brought to you by PodMatch, the dating service for podcasters. They introduced me to Ashley Kalagian Blunt, and I’m so glad they did. I hope you’ve enjoyed our conversation and remember that if you have a podcast or something to share with the world, check out PodMatch and tell them Lucinda sent you.

Soft and Supple are Strongest

Arizona Butterfly

“Human beings are 

   soft and supple when alive,

   stiff and straight when dead.

The myriad creatures, the grasses and trees are

   soft and fragile when alive,

   dry and withered when dead.

Therefore, it is said:

   The rigid person is a disciple of death;

   The soft, supple, and delicate are lovers of life.

   An army that is inflexible will not conquer;

   A tree that is inflexible will snap.

   The unyielding and mighty shall be brought low;

   The soft, supple, and delicate will be set above.” 

~ Tao Te Ching #41 Lao Tzu (Translation copyright © 1990 by Victor H. Mair)

“Instead of getting hard ourselves and trying to compete, women should try and give their best qualities to men – bring them softness, teach them how to cry.” ~ Joan Baez

I’ve been weeping a lot this week. I said to Barry that I was feeling emotionally fragile. However, several things converged to change my mind to make me feel differently. These are in no particular order.

I watched the seasons, Cranford, and Return to Cranford this week. I had seen Cranford several years ago, and read the book on which it is based, but because we didn’t subscribe to BritBox at that time, I couldn’t watch the second series. I decided it was time to complete my experience. The story is filled with so much love that I wept at the end of each ending. 

They are actually a combination of three or four stories by Elizabeth Gaskell (1810 – 1865)  She was close friends with Charlotte Brontë and like the Brontë sisters, was a woman writer in a time when getting her work published was a terribly difficult thing to do. However, the list of her work is long and impressive. And she did it while being a minister’s wife and the mother of six children. Almost all of her stories revolve around female protagonists. They are gentle representations of life in England at a time when life was changing rapidly because of the Industrial Revolution. The stories reflect the kind of communities I would love to live in.

During that time, I listened to Brené Brown’s resumption of her podcast. She’d been on sabbatical for a few months. Brené is a completely open and vulnerable person. She shared some life shattering events that were part of her decision to take a step back. But mostly, she quit doing her Unlocking Us podcast when that controversy over Joe Rogen exploded. All of Brené’s podcasts are exclusively on Spotify. Since her work is all about vulnerability, shame, and how we deal with our emotions, she wasn’t sure Spotify’s response to Rogen’s misinformation was appropriate. The controversy affected her a great deal. She feels a great responsibility to her Community and to promoting self-examination, inclusion, social justice, and the like. The reaction she got was shocking. 

When she took a step back to do some examination of herself and her work, she was bombarded with such vitriol and hatred that it added to the stresses on her personal life. This first podcast back was all about “Shaking the Sh*t from the Trees.” Did she deserve the hatred directed at her? Had she made mistakes with her research? How could she recover from the attacks and move forward? How could she deal with the difficult things happening in her family? The thing I love about Brené is she tells the truth about her experiences, how they affect her, and how she deals with what happens. Over the years I’ve been slowly doing the same thing. What she shared spoke to what’s going on with me. 

Fortunately, I’m not subjected to hate filled responses to any of my posts, no matter where they appear. At least not yet. But when people I follow do experience that, it makes me realize that for some reason and for the most part, humans have subscribed to the ideas that the world is a scary and dangerous place. That when someone we relied upon takes a break to take care of themselves, our crutch is taken away and we get scared and angry. “How can we possibly take care of ourselves?” And so they lash out with hatred because they are unable to acknowledge their fear and need to do their own work.

This morning I was thinking about my emotional ups and downs of the week and ideas came together in my head. In both Cranford seasons, Miss Matty Jenkyns is the heart of a town mostly populated by widowed, or single women. She is gentle, loving, and supportive of her friends and acquaintances. Throughout the stories, she suffers lots of losses but they never make her hard. She always forgives and allows her neighbors to have their own opinions. If she thinks events need to be re-evaluated, such as supporting the railroad coming to town, she entreats her friends to do so in very gentle ways. Because of this, she is supported by those who love her. 

In the last episode of the entire work, there is a train wreck and some people are killed when the engine explodes. The townspeople are in shock and grief. Miss Matty comes up with a plan to help them come together and heal. And when one of the characters asks her how she managed to accomplish her goal she says, “Love is the final word.”

Love is considered to be a soft emotion. But no matter what, love always wins. My friend and former colleague, Dave Dahl, always asked our acting students to find the love in their scenes. I think that’s what I look for in all the stories I consume. Where is the love and how are the characters changed and healed by it? And by extension, how am I healed by it? 

My emotions are near the surface now because I’ve been doing quite a bit of self-examination. And I find that stories I told myself about who I am are not true. The role I thought I was supposed to be playing during this lifetime, is not what I thought. I’m not quite sure what twists and turns my life will take once I launch my online course. I know that my podcast and this blog are beginning to get more attention. For a long time I have been reluctant to come out of hiding and become more visible. But, I can’t stop now. When I was editing the next Story-Power episode, I realized that creativity benefits both the creator and the consumer of the work. I believe it it creativity that will save the world, not so much science. Because it is creativity that helps us examine our emotions. And our emotions are what shape our experiences. Hard emotions make the world a difficult place in which to live. Soft emotions make it welcoming. I want to live in a welcoming world.

Thank you so much for following, liking and commenting. I hope things in your world are going well.

Blessings,

Lucinda Sage-Midgorden © 2022

The Space Between Time 

Lucinda is the author of The Space Between Time, an award finalist in the “Fiction: Fantasy” category of the 2017 Best Book Awards.

Have you ever experienced life shattering events? Yeah, after the last few years, most of us have. In The Space Between Time, Jenna Holden gets slammed by her fiancé walking out, her mother’s untimely death, and losing her job all in one week. But she receives unexpected help when she finds her three-times great-grandmother’s journals and begins the adventure of a lifetime.

The Space Between Time is available in all ebook formats at Smashwords and for Kindle at Amazon, or you can find the ebook at iBooks or Barnes and Noble. If you prefer a physical copy, you can find a print-on-demand version at Amazon. Stay tuned for news when the audiobook version is published.

Lucinda is also the host of Story-Power a podcast where she and her guests discuss their creative endeavors, and/or the stories that have changed their lives. It’s available here on Sage Woman Chronicles and on Apple, Google, and Spotify podcast apps. Please rate and leave a review. It helps people find me.

Patreon

I’m so passionate about stories that I created the Story-Power podcast and Patreon communities so I’d have an excuse to talk story with other story lovers. If you’re passionate about stories too, and want to talk about what you’ve learned from your favorites, come join me at patreon.com/StoryPower.

PodMatch

If you are a podcaster, or have a message or fantastic product you want to share with the world, I encourage you to check out PodMatch. Use the affiliate link and tell them, Lucinda sent you. Then contact me so we can set up a Story-Power chat.

Transitions

Oregon Trail wagonwheel ruts

“A lot of people resist transition and therefore never allow themselves to enjoy who they are. Embrace the change, no matter what it is; once you do, you can learn about the new world you’re in and take advantage of it.” ~ Nikki Giovanni

I’m not quite sure where I am or what I’m thinking at the moment. This is a new state for me. Most of the time I have an opinion about everything, but I’ve been doing some deep reflection and even healing old wounds and thought patterns, which leaves me in a kind of limbo.

On the one hand it’s disconcerting. On the other I’m getting glimpses of a new me that I never dreamed existed. That’s a weird feeling after 69 years of feeling like I knew who I was. The only thing I know is that I want to keep moving forward into this new me. She seems interesting. I have no idea what she and I will be doing together in the future but hopefully spreading love and forgiveness will be part of it.

Barry and I watched Ken Burns new docu-series, The U.S. and the Holocaust, recently. After watching that we just sat with it for a while. The atrocities were so big. But what comes to me about that is that we, as a human race, need to experience all the horrors of human nature, even if it’s through stories like this one, before we can begin to heal and grow into better people. It’s kind of like the human race is at the teenage stage. We’re going through all kinds of growing pains. Hopefully we’ll get over the hump in the next few years and begin to act more like adults.

I guess that’s been my quest for the last few months, to grow into a better human being. I want to take out all the dark stuff that I thought I had dealt with, and address the fact that I held on to it thinking I couldn’t heal it, or that it was buried so deep I’d never have to think of it again. But the energy of the times won’t let me do that.

I have begun to do the Hawaiian prayer, Ho’oponopono every day. It’s deceptively simple: “I’m sorry. Please forgive me. I love you. I thank you.” When I do it and scan my body, mind, and spirit, I find more of those dark feelings I held onto, or didn’t even know I had. It’s a great feeling when, once acknowledged they dissipate. I feel lighter, more hopeful that, indeed things are getting better. 

That’s all I have for you today. I’m off to do more work on editing the video segments for my online course. 

Thanks so much for sticking with me as I try to figure out who I am, what it means to be a human being, and how we can turn away from fear and hatred, toward love.

Blessings,

Lucinda Sage-Midgorden © 2022

The Space Between Time

Lucinda is the author of The Space Between Time, an award finalist in the “Fiction: Fantasy” category of the 2017 Best Book Awards.

Have you ever experienced life shattering events? Yeah, after the last few years, most of us have. In The Space Between Time, Jenna Holden gets slammed by her fiancé walking out, her mother’s untimely death, and losing her job all in one week. But she receives unexpected help when she finds her three-times great-grandmother’s journals and begins the adventure of a lifetime.

The Space Between Time is available in all ebook formats at Smashwords and for Kindle at Amazon, or you can find the ebook at iBooks or Barnes and Noble. If you prefer a physical copy, you can find a print-on-demand version at Amazon. Stay tuned for news when the audiobook version is published.

Lucinda is also the host of Story-Power a podcast where she and her guests discuss their creative endeavors, and/or the stories that have changed their lives. It’s available here on Sage Woman Chronicles and on Apple, Google, and Spotify podcast apps. Please rate and leave a review. It helps people find me.

Patreon

I’m so passionate about stories that I created the Story-Power podcast and Patreon communities so I’d have an excuse to talk story with other story lovers. If you’re passionate about stories too, and want to talk about what you’ve learned from your favorites, come join me at patreon.com/StoryPower.

PodMatch

If you are a podcaster, or have a message or fantastic product you want to share with the world, I encourage you to check out PodMatch. Use the affiliate link and tell them, Lucinda sent you. Then contact me so we can set up a Story-Power chat.

Little Steps to Creativity

Gina Clark is an artist, writer, and certified Kaizen-Muse Creativity Coach who believes everyone — even the most logical people — can be creative with just a few small tweaks.

Kaizen-Muse uses small steps, mindfulness, and intuition to gradually build creative momentum without overwhelm. Gina is the founder of Gina Clark Creative, an online community that provides creative resources and coaching for people looking to ignite their creativity.

Gina especially loves to help her fellow left-brained creatives and analytical artists and believes that embracing your creativity is the ultimate act of self-care. Gina lives in Kenora, Ontario, Canada with her husband, 3 children, 2 cats, and a very active mini-Australian Shepherd.

Gina Clark

Gina Clark’s Website, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest

Jill Badonsky The Muse Is In Website, Book, The 9 Modern Day Muses (And a Bodyguard) Third Edition

Dr. Robert Maurer, Ph.D, Amazon Author Page, Facebook

PodMatch

This episode is brought to you by PodMatch, the dating service for podcasters. They introduced me to Gina Clark, and I’m so glad they did. I hope you’ve enjoyed our conversation and remember that if you have a podcast or something to share with the world, check out PodMatch and tell them Lucinda sent you.

Patreon

I’m so passionate about stories that I created the Story-Power podcast and Patreon communities so I’d have an excuse to talk story with other story lovers. If you’re passionate about stories too, and want to talk about what you’ve learned from your favorites, come join me at patreon.com/StoryPower.

“Humans are not ideally set up to understand logic; they are ideally set up to understand stories.” ~ Roger C. Schank, Cognitive Scientist

That Time When It Hits You

Barbed Wire Fence at a Concentration Camp

“If you could kick the person in the pants responsible for most of your trouble, you wouldn’t sit for a month.” ~ Theodore Roosevelt

“There is an expiry date on blaming your parents for steering you in the wrong directions; the moment you are old enough to take the wheel, responsibility lies with you.” ~ J.K. Rowling

“This is your life. You are responsible for it. You will not live forever. Don’t wait.” ~ Natalie Goldberg

Do you remember that time when you realized that the hurtful situation that you blamed on someone else, was either partly, or all your fault? Remember that terrible feeling in the pit of your stomach? You knew you had to take responsibility for it and when you did, you grew up a little bit more. The process wasn’t easy but it was worth it.

I think that individuals are not the only ones who go through this kind of situation, groups, corporations, nations, and humanity as a whole go through it. I think we’re going through a time like that right now. Humanity as a whole is having to face up to some really hard truths. We can be cruel beyond belief. Sometimes we turn away and fail to do something for someone in need. We don’t want to share what we have with others. We don’t want change.

Barry and I finished watching the latest Ken Burns documentary series, The U.S. and the Holocaust last night. And even though I wasn’t alive during the Second World War, I’m feeling that awful feeling in the pit of my stomach. The problem of discounting a whole group of people has not gone away. We’re still dealing with it. We still have that us and them mentality because we’re so afraid. I can’t really understand what we’re afraid of? To me, people are people. We may worship differently, or speak different languages, have different customs, but we all want the same things. We want to be heard and understood, we want to be loved and appreciated for who we are. Ken Burns told Stephen Colbert he hoped people understood after watching this documentary, that “We are one human race,” He’s right. I love what Morgan Freeman’s character says in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. An English child asks him, “Did God paint you?” To which Freeman replies, “For sure, because Allah loves infinite variety.”

I’m asking myself hard questions, why don’t we love infinite variety? Why do white people think they are superior to other “races”? What makes us think we have more of God’s favor? What makes us so hard hearted? 

I know, not all white people are hard hearted, not all people of color are blameless. But I just wonder what makes us want to hurt others and what can I do to help us grow up and accept each other as wondrous beings? I’m not sure what I can do. But I’m going to continue to “Sit with the question,” as Owen Wilson’s character says in Marry Me, “until I get an answer.”

Maybe Story-Power, this blog, and the course I’m creating about using stories as a personal growth tool, are part of the answer. I certainly hope humanity is waking up. I hope we’re letting go of fear and becoming more open minded and open hearted. I guess we’ll see.

I hope things are going well in your world. Welcome to my new followers. Please feel free to make a comment or a like.

Blessings,

Lucinda Sage-Midgorden © 2022

The Space Between Time

Lucinda is the author of The Space Between Time, an award finalist in the “Fiction: Fantasy” category of the 2017 Best Book Awards.

Have you ever experienced life shattering events? Yeah, after the last few years, most of us have. In The Space Between Time, Jenna Holden gets slammed by her fiancé walking out, her mother’s untimely death, and losing her job all in one week. But she receives unexpected help when she finds her three-times great-grandmother’s journals and begins the adventure of a lifetime.

The Space Between Time is available in all ebook formats at Smashwords and for Kindle at Amazon, or you can find the ebook at iBooks or Barnes and Noble. If you prefer a physical copy, you can find a print-on-demand version at Amazon. Stay tuned for news when the audiobook version is published.

Lucinda is also the host of Story-Power a podcast where she and her guests discuss their creative endeavors, and/or the stories that have changed their lives. It’s available here on Sage Woman Chronicles and on Apple, Google, and Spotify podcast apps. Please rate and leave a review. It helps people find me.

Patreon

I’m so passionate about stories that I created the Story-Power podcast and Patreon communities so I’d have an excuse to talk story. You may have seen my Story-Power posts here. If you’re passionate about stories too, and want to talk about your favorite stories, come join me at either SageWoman.life, or patreon.com/StoryPower.

PodMatch

If you are a podcaster, or have a message or fantastic product you want to share with the world, I encourage you to check out PodMatch. Use the affiliate link and tell them, Lucinda sent you. Then contact me so we can set up a Story-Power chat.