18 Adar, 5777
It's been a powerful 48 hours since I wrote my most recent blogpost.
I wrapped up my writing of the speech I'll be giving in May. Barring unforeseen miracles, I doubt that I'll change any of the words by then.
Though I'm a professional writer, I prefer to have my public presentation work reviewed by colleagues before I make my comments to an audience. Personal remarks are not impartial, as most of my writing would be. That can be a problem. So, yesterday, I sent the document with my speech to a few medical and mental health professionals. I asked them to critique my work so I could improve on it and make sure that my points were clearly made.
Responses were favorable. One stood out from the rest:
"Your experiences are so moving, and your personality so optimistic and unflackable [sic] despite the difficulties, it's no wonder that you have the ability to inspire.
"Your piece inspired me to look at my own life. I've never broken a bone, so it wasn't as easy for me to see the hand of shamayim (heaven) giving me a such clear sign. Still, the hand of Shamayim is there, obviously.
"I asked myself, what were my most difficult trials for? Because I too have had very difficult health trials, only different ones. Baruch Hashem (thank GOD), resolved.
"I believe that these trials were for growth, maturation, and self definition. Who am I? How can I compensate? (Compensation is not only a cover for weakness, it is also an exercise in strength in of itself.) How should I approach this situation and others like it, in order to be more rather than less as a result of this trial? What can I do with my life to make it a life best lived?
"I think of Young, who, after developing a new philosophy and methodology for the treatment of mental illness, fell into a psychotic period for a number of years. Fully aware that he was psychotic (which is unusual in of itself) he studied himself while psychotic. Then he came out from his mental illness. That subsequent period after his mental illness was to become most productive period of his life.
"I also think that throughout my life I have had deep desires in my heart that I didn't know how to vocalize, for which I had no idea how they would be realized. Then Hashem (GOD) made them happen. I look back and I see that the things that I wanted the most, the things my heart prayed for without my mouth praying, were the things that Hashem gave me and keeps giving me.
"So for me, most of what I see coming out of shamayim in my life, is not "stay away from this or that" (although surely those things are in the halacha - ED: Jewish law) but rather a deep chesed (kindness) that just keeps coming.
Anyway, keep writing and keep inspiring!"
I plan to share the speech with you after it's been spoken to my audience in May.
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