I’m an intensive.
I’m also a writer, a coach, a minister.
I grew up in that part of suburban Connecticut that thinks it’s New York City, barely qualified as New England at all. We rooted for the Mets or the Yankees, we got New York weather, listened to New York traffic reports, and referred to New York as The City, as though there was no other.
My father is an engineer, my mother is trained as a mathematician, my brother has a computer science degree…
so I speak geek, but it’s not my native tongue. People are my native tongue. People and poetry. I have studied people in some form or other for most of my adult life. The ways that culture and life and expectations and personalities interact fascinate me. But I never thought I’d develop a framework of my own. It didn’t even cross my mind.
This book began as the product of the long silences that accompany us in major healing journeys. In December 2014, I ruptured my L3 disc and spent the next 3 months lying flat on my back, recovering.
It got awfully quiet in my head after a while.
And then the ruckus kicked up. When the to-do list that I couldn’t touch was finished, and the lifetime regrets had begun, there came a litany of all the things that had Gone Wrong in my life.
When I’d had about enough of the “It’s all your fault” drone, there was a crystal sound; the seed of an idea: that there was some pattern to all the things that had made my life difficult.
The careers that didn’t work, the incompatible lovers, the fierce but capricious hobbies…
Somehow, they were related. They had to be related, it happened too often to be a coincidence. The accusations were too common: you’re too much, it’s too much, I can’t anymore, I’m exhausted…
A half dozen Facebook posts and conversations later, the image began to coalesce, and this book, unbeknownst to me, began its journey.
Finally, I had to say it: Intensives turn out to be not just my peers but also some of my dearest friends and some of my best allies. Intensives are often my most fabulous clients. Intensives have tremendous gifts for the world. And we need those gifts. We need those people. You’re not too much.
And the work was born.