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A Whole Lotta Heartbreak Goin’ On…

06 Dec

Even though we knew the topic of heartbreak, abandonment & betrayal was the most requested one on our survey, we’re still pretty astounded by the response we’re getting to it - orders for downloads are through the roof, as are pre-orders for the packaged CD (which won’t be ready til mid-December).  I’m very glad to have something that’s so needed - and I’m unusually happy with how this one turned out - but it’s sad to see how much heartbreak there is out there, especially now, around holiday time. I hope this will be a real help for people.

As for advice for this kind of heart-wrenching loss, aside from the plucky superheroine known as Breakup Girl, I have a couple suggestions. I’m not always such a big fan of Dr. Phil, but he gives some pretty decent (if hardnosed) advice on dealing with a breakup here.

And because detaching from a relationship can be very much like recovering from an addiction, I really like what this blogger writes about taking 12 steps to wholeness here.

I also want to include a great book suggestion from a friend who emailed while I was working on the content for this imagery - she recommended I read Janis Spring Abrams’s After the Affair. She said it offered, “…an absolutely dead-on, universal description of the range of feelings experienced by the person who’s been betrayed… the first few chapters put in words what I felt every minute of those horrible days, but probably couldn’t have articulated myself, even in therapy.  The problem with [some] therapists, is that they just throw the word “betrayal” around as if it has a static meaning without digging deeper to see how this particular person is experiencing the loss, self-hate, second guessing, and so on. This author has the right words and insights. She spoke directly to me and once I knew she understood exactly what I was feeling, I was able to buy into her advice on healing…”  

She was right - it’s a terrific book for romantic and marital betrayal, and I recommend it highly.  And I’d be remiss if I didn’t include my friend’s final sentence on that email: “Wow…It’s been a long time since I’ve thought about all of this. Time actually does heal all wounds….

The imagery on this new audio isn’t just for this kind of heartbreak, however. It’s designed to cover the whole universe of experiences that can be subsumed under abandonment, betrayal and loss, using core psychodynamic principles that are the bedrock of the healing trajectory.  

When Bruce Gigax, our impeccable sound engineer, called to say the editing was done on the narrative, he also told me that he’d done a preliminary music mix, and, very uncharacteristically he enthused, “You’re going to love the way this sounds with the music!

Now, I’m as persnickety as he is, and my creaky voice has sometimes given us so much grief, that we’ve been known to record everything all over again after listening to what was supposed to be the finished product.  So, I’m thinking, “Yeah, right, Brucie…. in your dreams, Kid!”   

And then there’s our brilliant, talented, self-critical-to-the-point-of-teeth-gnashing composer-musician, Steven Mark Kohn, who had called earlier in the week, to plead with us to please, please not use our standard music for this one - he was referring to Music for Meditation - a piece that goes with pretty much everything, and that people just love - because musically he’s just tired of it, and he’s done far more complex and sophisticated pieces for us since writing that one.  He begged us to consider using either Dreamwaves (the gorgeous, poignant, textured piece he wrote for Peaceful Dying - now called Help with Hospice and Palliative Care because the word “dying” seemed to freak people out) or Meditative Reflections (the yummy, soothing, uber-mellow, lovely folk-like music that scores our Panic Attack imagery).

So we agreed to start out trying the Dreamwaves piece first, but with no promises that we’d use it, because you never know what’s going to work best until you try it with the voice and compare it to the other gorgeous stuff he’s written for us- altogether, we have 8 different pieces of Steve’s, each one better than the next.
Well, imagine my surprise, when I heard the mix.  Bruce was right.  We didn’t even bother trying it with anything else. There’s something about this topic - heartbreak - and this music - Dreamwaves - that totally works - end of story. I almost never say this, but I actually am very happy with the way it came out.
And though I was happy enough with the narrative - after all, this is the basic stuff a psychotherapist mucks around in all day! - the extra something the music provides is huge.  

You can hear a sample here if you like.  For people who’ve been really undone by devastating, grievous loss, I think this new imagery would go really well with Healing Trauma.
Oh, and we changed the package art, by the way.  We got too many complaints about the dreary (but eloquent) artwork I’d chosen to represent heartbreak!  The staff was none too crazy about it either.  So behold, the new packaging.
OK, take care and be well!
All best,

Belleruth Naparstek

Psychotherapist, author and guided imagery pioneer Belleruth Naparstek is the creator of the popular Health Journeys guided imagery audio series. Her latest book on imagery and posttraumatic stress, Invisible Heroes: Survivors of Trauma and How They Heal (Bantam Dell), won the Spirituality & Health Top 50 Books Award