psychoanalysis, a village priest, blogging, pizza and tuva

a tuva singerapparently this is meme week. i saw this on airdrie’s blog the other day and managed to resist but then i saw it on raul’s blog and, well, i just had to partake. it’s really simple – if you want to be interviewed by someone who’s participating, just let them know, and they’ll send you five questions. that’s what raul did for me. thanks, raul, those were great questions. here are the questions and answers:

1.- why did you get into counselling as a professional field?

i grew up in a house where “psychoanalysis” was as commonplace a word as “hockey” is in most canadian families. i never really liked my father’s psychoanalyst friends too much; to my young mind, they were old stick-in-the-muds totally lost in their heads. they had nothing of the earthiness that i so enjoyed in some of my parents’ other friends. maybe that’s why it never occurred to me to look at that field as a career to dream about. instead i was hoping to study anthropology and comparative religion (which i never did, but that’s a different story). the similarity between those two and psychoanalysis never dawned on me until i was five years into studying psychology. that study started in my thirties, innocently enough. i had just gotten behind me a somewhat dramatic breakup with my second husband and needed something to distract me. a night course in counselling psychology seemed to hit the spot. i never looked back. that was in 1990.

2.- how do you see blogging can help counsellors and/or clients?

there are many ways. for counsellors, it can be a resource. or an outlet. or a way to attract clients. for people who are not counsellors, again, it can be an outlet. blogging is mostly about writing, and writing is often therapeutic. but the thing i am most grateful for on this blog is that i have been able to build a little community for people with anorexia here who help and support each other.

3.- if you lived in a different time (e.g. the renaissance) – what would you be (professionally or personally)?

easy! a village priest (never mind the little details of celibacy and me being a woman). when i was an outreach counsellor in the downtown eastside, that’s how i often felt. do my little bit in soothing the souls while i trudge, eat, laugh and cry with the rest.

4.- what is the food group you dislike the most and why?

alas, there is no such thing. but there are two that i could easily do without. they are – please don’t lynch me – pizza and ice cream. i never have a hankering for them but when they’re around i often eat more than necessary. then i feel yukky and ask myself, “now what the frig did you do THAT for???” i mean, it’s one thing to overdo on something you really like – but something that’s not even on my top 10 list?

5.- if you had a free ticket for two to fly somewhere right now where would it be, who would you take with you and why?

i’d fly to tuva with tova. tuva is a little republic in southern siberia, bordering on mongolia. i had always found mongolia fascinating. always loved empty, hidden-away wide-open spaces, and as a child and teenager i was horse crazy. then when i saw the movie genghis blues i was up in flames. the dream! the music! the wide, wide, wide sky! the beautiful river! perhaps the most memorable movie i’ve seen in the last 10 years. so i’d love to go to tuva with my daughter tova and share this adventure with her.

want to get in on the fun? you can be a part of it by following a few simple steps…

  • leave a comment here on this post and ask me to interview you
  • i’ll respond within 1-5 days with 5 questions directed to you (i promise to try and be unique)
  • answer the questions on your blog and link back to this post
  • invite others to participate by re-posting these steps
  • once you’ve posted your interview, i’ll post a link to it here.


roxie responded in her post my first meme. clinically clueless has posted hers, too: a hymn, fingerpaintaing, blogging and journaling.

the image of the tuvan singer is from marysia


  1. Believe it or not, the *obviousness* of why blogging is also good therapy hadn’t occurred to me ’til I read your comment above. How did I miss that?
    And if you like hidden-away, wide-open spaces, you know where I’m going to suggest in addition to Tuva!
    and I’d love to participate in the meme. It’s quite a meaningful one, actually – more than the boilerplate ones.

    Nancy’s last blog post..Case Study (follow on cbc, too): $60 K in debt and getting out, Assignment #3

  2. Thanks for keeping the meme going! It is a lot of fun.

    This is a great starting point for our panel at Northern Voice. I like Nancy’s comment above; sometimes life is really not that complicated, and the obvious starting place to solve problems is to talk about it. But people hold stuff in, especially taboo messy stuff. Blogging is great for dialogue. Yes, I know I’m preaching to the converted, but not everyone at the conference will have made the connection, like Nancy had not. Make sense? I’m just a little excited is all. 🙂

    Airdrie Miller’s last blog post..I?ll be speaking at Northern Voice 2009

  3. Those were very good questions and I liked reading your thoughtful answers. I’ve also found a virtual community through blogging. I wish I’d started sooner!

    I would love to be interviewed by you, and I can’t wait to see what CC writes!

    Dano MacNamarrah’s last blog post..Mea Culpa, Erased.

  4. okay, guys, i’ve decided to ask you the questions right here in the comments. it’s past 11 at night, so i’ll start with CC; let’s see how far i get. if i don’t manage to ask questions of all of you, hang in there, i’ll pick up the thread as soon as i can.

    questions for CC:

    1. what’s your favourite hymn, and why?
    2. what do you like about finger painting?
    3. what’s the best thing you’re planning on making happen this year?
    4. how can journaling and blogging help with mental health?
    5. what makes you laugh?

    on to nancy:

    1. who is your favourite philosopher and why?
    2. where does your interest in liberation theology come from?
    3. how did you become an “activist newbie?”
    4. what would you say to someone who claims that spirituality and money are incompatible?
    5. what music do you like dancing to?

    now dano:

    1. what things do you do to alleviate / forestall depression?
    2. what has living with being bipolar taught you?
    3. one of the categories in your blog is “crime and punishment”. what makes you so passionate about that subject?
    4. animals seem to be important to you, too. any books or movies you’d recommend on the subject? why?
    5. “dano macnamarrah” – is there a story behind that name?

    i’m still not asleep! so i’ll ask the questions for roxy, too:

    1. there’s a guitar on your blog. what’s the story behind that?
    2. can you explain what a haibun is and give us some examples of your haibun writing?
    3. on the topic of writing: how does writing help you with your recovery?
    4. and what do you think of dr. seuss as a writer?
    5. you are a christian in 12-step recovery. how would you explain the concept of a higher power / god to someone uncomfortable with christianity but who might nevertheless benefit from a 12-step program?

  5. Thanks ever so!

    I’m having some issues with cycling, so I’d like to take a couple of days on this. I started out bitching and whining and then hit the pink cloud!

    If I do this over a couple of days, hopefully I can rise above my relentless self. And I seriously want to respond to your article on the psychic.

    It’s important, so I want to reply correctly. A bit hard now, as every couple of words I have to pause and twiddle my fingers!

    Then I’ll be too tired.

    Almost forgot, I’m going to study to be a dog trainer, hopefully toward rehabbing and therapy dogs.

    Dano MacNamarrah’s last blog post..The Dog, The Cat And The Rat Show Us Hope.

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