After sixteen years in the Coast Guard, on October 1, 2013 Brandon Saiz achieved the rank of Chief Petty Officer. Hating the tradition of initiation, he decided not to go through the voluntary indoctrination process and was ostracized by other chiefs. We talk about the military’s history of hazing, the social and mental health implications of going against the system, and how twenty years in the service impacts his life as a civilian. Trigger warning: This episode includes a candid conversation […]
In 2010, Kate Wallinga (Ignorance Was Bliss podcast) gave birth to her third child and didn’t feel right. After being dismissed by her doctors, she learned she had a serious infection from being exposed to strep in the delivery room. Out of the four million women who give birth every year, only 100 get this kind of complication and only one of those women survive. We talk about the medical emergency that changed her mind, her life, and the new […]
One week before our interview, Steven Pacheco was on a bus ride to Boston when the driver called the police on a young black passenger for being on his phone. While recording the event, Steven realized he was observing the policing of black and brown bodies in a new way. We talk about race, trauma, and how leadership opportunities are changing this self-proclaimed Renaissance man and his experience as a black man in America. Additional Resources Connect with Steven Twitter: @MrStevenPacheco […]
Two years ago, Uyen Trinh was diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes and it forced her to reconsider her relationship with her body and every relationship in her life. As a refugee from Vietnam and growing up in foster care, she realized she had become the ultimate caregiver at the sacrifice of herself. We talk about self-care, what it takes to advocate for yourself, and how she reversed her diagnosis through a ketogenic diet.
Julie Dombo was at an AT&T store in Derby, Kansas when she was shot during a robbery. That event on August 11, 2015 led to an extensive hospitalization and left Julie as a quadruple amputee. We talk about her totally changed life, the optimism needed to carry on, her mission to share her story, and America’s relationship with guns. Additional Resources Wichita Public Schools (video): Julie Dombo at Heights High School – March 13, 2018 The Wichita Eagle: Julie Dombo […]
On her 30th birthday, Susan Fritz said something to her husband that changed everything. A week later, Dan passed away from cancer and her life as a nomad began to take shape. Ten years has passed and she has been all over the world. We talk about the useless cliches around illness, how time offers new perspective, and why she is so excited to turn 40. Additional Resources The Telegraph: “Happy Birthday song and its strange past”
While sailing in August of 1999, disability advocate Becky Curran felt numbness in her legs. It was the first sign of a progressive condition that could take away her ability to walk. After a successful back surgery, she encountered social changes as her friends in high school started excluding her because of her size. We talk about her life as a little person, misconceptions about the disabled community, and her mission to change the world for the next generation through […]
Veteran Stephan Wolfert was working with the famous choreographer Twyla Tharp when she said something that clarified everything. We talk about his time in the Army, how he became an actor, his work with veterans through DE-CRUIT, and the scientific proof that Shakespeare and theater are the keys to healing trauma. Part Two of my special Brain Double Header. Listen to Part One: Bill Monroe on getting better (and not getting best) Additional Resources DE-CRUIT DE-CRUIT: science publications Cry Havoc, solo performance […]
Bill Monroe (Strokecast podcast) is a Generation X stroke survivor. He talks about what on June 4, 2017, his ongoing recovery, and how he has become a marketing guy who knows way too much about neurology and neuroplasticity. Part One of my special Brain Double Header. Listen to Part Two: Stephan Wolfert on rewiring the brain with Shakespeare and science Additional Resources Bill Monroe: Strokecast Strokecast Episode 28: The Slow Road to Better Ted Talk: Jill Bolte Taylor, My stroke of insight World Stroke […]
Thirteen years ago, former teacher and lawyer Duncan Payne had a heart attack. We talk about strange responses to emergencies, how things forever change, and the fears that emerge and vanish after being in the belly of the whale. Additional Resources The Poetry Society: Jonah’s prayer by Aviva Dautch Smithsonian Magazine: “Could a Whale Accidentally Swallow You? It Is Possible” Joseph Campbell: A Hero with a Thousand Faces
Megan Bryan was loving the firefighter life when she decided to be a single mother by choice. She found a sperm donor and after numerous rounds of fertility treatments, her daughter was born and she suddenly had to confront the worst biases about herself and our society. We talk about parenthood, racism, sexism, and her partner and their growing family. Additional Resources San Francisco Chronicle: “Black firefighter on inspection duty in Oakland hills gets videotaped, reported to police”
Meet your host as she introduces the show’s content and format. A writer and produced playwright, she talks about the moment a serious medical emergency disrupted her life and led her to pursue a different kind of story.