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My Silver Chair

 

By:  Dr. Katherine Albrecht, Ed. D.

Fort Fairfield Journal, August 31, 2016

 

   My last couple of weeks have been challenging, to say the least.  I've had a couple of people ask me how I stay so “uppy”.  The answer is, I don't, always.  Please know that the two hours that I come on the air and do this radio program are my two sane hours.  It's like I'm sitting in C.S. Lewis' Silver Chair, which is one of the books in his Chronicles of Narnia series.

   In the book, a prince is cast under a spell and held in a system of caves by an evil witch who most of the day appears to be a beautiful princess for which he has become enamored.  But for an hour or so a day he comes to realize the true nature of his situation and begins to rage and demand to be set free.  It is at that point he is locked into the silver chair.

   The reality is he goes through his life in a dream state in this fake paradise which is really a miserable, horrible existence in this underground, muddy set of caves.  He's in the dark, he never sees the sun, never sees a butterfly, never sees the sky.  For the one hour or so a day that he's in the silver chair he says I want the sunlight, I want to get back, get me out of here!  I hate this place. 

  Unlike many radio hosts who work hours a day just to prepare for their show, radio comes very easy for me.  When I'm on the air, it is the one time of the day that I don't have to work very hard.  When you sense that I'm coming on the air and I'm just me to the extent that what I talk about is spontaneous and reeling from the heart, it's because it actually really is.   I think the more preparation I do, past a certain minimal point, is just "stirring the soda."  The more you stir it and stir it you think you're accomplishing something but the less effervescent the soda is becoming and that is the case with this show.

   In my case, the two hours that I do my radio program are a little bit like the silver chair, but with a twist.   As listeners know over the last couple of weeks I'm going through - I don't even have words to describe it.  Nearly everything that I counted as true, real, good and supportive in my life has been pulled out from under me (not everything, because if everything were gone I would really be in a bad way).  A lot of the fundamental, critical trusts, beliefs and supports that I've had in my life are no longer there.  But it's more than that.  It's one thing to have a support disappear but it's another thing to have a support turn into an antagonism.  That's what I'm going through. 

   My point in going into the fact that radio is really easy for me is these two hours of the day that I join you on the air are the two hours that I get to do something I'm good at.  I get to not be antagonized, I get to not be frightened, I get to not be stolen from, I get to not be attacked or assaulted, I get to be just here alone in a soundproof room, which can be a very lonely place to be but at this point in my life it's a very safe place to be; it's a good place to be. 

For these two hours a day I get to do something I'm good at.  The way to feel competent, the way to feel good, to boost your testosterone and reduce your cortisol, to feel better about yourself is to learn a skill that you're good at and do it.  It can be anything, it can be knitting, guitar, or crossword puzzles.  Find something you're good at and devote a certain portion of your day to doing that and regardless of how much else is chaos in your life, or how many other things you're not good at, and how often you are reminded that you're not good at them, at least that thing you can do and do well.  So, this radio broadcast is my thing, this is my crossword puzzle and I'm really glad to share it with you. 

This editorial was transcribed and adapted for print from a recent Katherine Albrecht radio program, by David Deschesne, with her permission. Dr. Katherine Albrecht, Ed. D. is a syndicated radio talk show host on the Genesis Communication Network. Listen to her program live daily, or download her podcast for listening at any time at www.gcnlive.com Katherine’s website is: www.katherinealbrecht.com 

 

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