While writing my book on recovering from auto accident trauma, I found myself revisiting how I came to follow my path into clinical work which has now spanned over 40 years. Many major life decisions begin with painful emotional events and traumas that break the human heart. A journey then begins to heal the shattered self.

In the preface to my book, I talk about my mother’s death last year and the painful dynamics that were set in place over ninety years ago when she nearly died in an accident with fire she experienced as a four-year-old child. She and her sisters had discovered an unexploded firecracker on the fourth of July. Her older sister supplied a match and somehow my mother’s dress caught on fire and she was badly burned. Her recovery took over a year as her mother nursed her to health, tending to her wounds in the family home in a small town in north-central Ohio. The town doctor would stop in from time to time to monitor my mother’s progress from an accident that nearly cost her life.

Read more at Psychology Today.