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Notes from the Field

A Patient's Gift

A participant in the Create to Heal class, a two-time survivor of cancer, a thriver of life, picked "reverence" as her word in the moment. From this word in the moment, came a message in the moment and a creative insight.

To further describe reverence, she used many like words: respect, honor, kindness, attentive, special, caring, love, honor, awe. In the midst of these lovely "good" words came - pathetic - a little shock to the listening system. How brilliant!

To insert the "bad" word, without ceremony, without drama, without warning or emphasis. Just another word in a string of good words. Special, caring, pathetic, love, honor, awe ... 

It captured everyone’s attention.  “Good on you! Brilliant” I said! “You inserted pathetic and read on as though nothing significant had happened.”

“Patricia, nothing significant did happen. I said “empathetic.”

We all heard pathetic!  

Brilliant all the same ... after we heard pathetic, the remaining words were somehow crisper, clearer, cleaner. More meaningful. AWE - inspiring.

So I ask you, what’s in a word? 

Em. Pathetic




WE can add or delete part of a word to change it’s meaning in an instant, changing one’s perspective in an instant. A blink of color, a blink of an em or un or less.  A powerful reminder of how words affect us. Change us. IN.form us. De.light or light us.