Healing, Money and the Enneagram. What do they all have in common?  

Mar 03, 2020

By, Annelise Bretthauer CFP®

 My journey since being diagnosed with an autoimmune disease (Crohn’s) has taught me two things that I believe are vital to wellness. 

#1: There are times when being is more effective than doing.

#2 (and most important): Awareness is a destination.

For most of my life, the way I’ve dealt with not feeling enough is by “doing”, by taking constant action. While sometimes doing IS the answer, other times just being is the answer....

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Meditations on Love and Loss

Feb 18, 2020

The three most influential women in my life have all shared this date as their birthday.  How remarkable is that?!  My wife, my mother and my best friend.  I don’t know how much stock to put into astrology or birth charts, but the odds of this being true seem truly astronomical.  These women have shaped me, perhaps more than any other three people aside from my sister and they were all born on the same day.  I met my best friend the week before school started...

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What’s it Like to Live with Lung Disease?

Feb 04, 2020

It is estimated that chronic lung disease impacts more than 13% of the adult population in the United States.  That’s a serious chunk of us.  There are two broad types of lung disease, obstructive and restrictive.  Their names give away a lot about the disease types: obstructive diseases are ones in which the airway is impeded (it, in fact, obstructs the exhale) and, and in restrictive diseases the lungs are prevented from fully inflating (restricting the inhale). ...

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What About Race and Chronic Illness?

Jan 21, 2020

I’m the only white kid in my family.  Understand, me saying that does not give me some kind of get-out-of-racism-free card, just a different lens on growing up white than the one you may have had.  Being the youngest in a family with two brown siblings made aware of my whiteness earlier than some.  It made my whiteness overt; which, for most white people, it isn’t.  That’s part of what privilege is – the invisibility of the advantages our skin color...

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What are my Intentions for the New Year?

Jan 07, 2020

So, part of being sick means that, for the most part I have let go of setting new year’s resolutions.  To be fair, resolutions were hit and miss in my world even before I got sick.  However, I love the opportunity we have as humans to turn the page – to see each new day, new month, new moon, new year, as an opportunity to reset.  The endless possibilities to make new choices and decide again that we are going to do something differently is one of the most optimistic...

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What Have I Learned in 2019?

Dec 31, 2019

Chronic illness means that I have different benchmarks for accomplishment in my life.  So, I don’t do the math in the same way I used to.  One thing that is different is that I don’t make resolutions in the new year.  Rather, I look back at the year that has passed and think about what I’ve learned, take stock of the ways in which I’ve grown and changed, notice the things I’ve come to see differently.  Some items on the list are related to...

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What Have I Learned in 2019?

Dec 31, 2019

Chronic illness means that I have different benchmarks for accomplishment in my life.  So, I don’t do the math in the same way I used to.  One thing that is different is that I don’t make resolutions in the new year.  Rather, I look back at the year that has passed and think about what I’ve learned, take stock of the ways in which I’ve grown and changed, notice the things I’ve come to see differently.  Some items on the list are related to...

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What Matters

Dec 03, 2019

I had the awesome privilege of getting to hear one of my favorite authors, Elizabeth Gilbert, speak in Portland last month.  She inspires me in her writing.  She makes me think critically.  She makes me laugh.  Each time I’ve had a chance to listen to her in person or in recorded interviews, I appreciate her honest reflections and the way she shares deeply from her life to make observations about the world around us.  This recent lecture was no exception. ...

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How do You Survive the Holidays Intact?

Nov 26, 2019

There is one sweater in my collection that I knit (and unknit) three times.  Part of the downfall of knitting sweaters is that until they are fully knitted and washed, you aren’t able to try them on and see whether you like the style on you the way you thought you would and whether the one you made fits you well.  In truth, much of the reason the sweater didn’t fit is that I was using a different size yarn, didn’t do the calculations correctly, and the yarn...

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How do You Practice Self-Care?

Nov 19, 2019

Getting sick and never getting well again is like crucible, burning up any extra bit of energy, allowing the pace and demands of life to come into sharp enough focus that we might come to understand the critical importance of self-care.  Perhaps, you were raised as I was, with the belief that self-care was selfish.  Unlearning this belief has been key to my wellness, to my staying as healthy as I’m able – both physically and mentally, knowing that in order to provide any...

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