Sherryl Valentine, Retired Teacher and School Principal
Dear Larry and Thea,
I have had many "ahhas" since I joined you in the Rediscovery of the Heart Institute. I would just like to share some of those things with you.
To me at this point, the greatest discovery has been the whole idea of the "Heart" where every experience is stored and upon those experiences we react or respond. In addition, until we heal all of the false assumptions and ideas stored there we will continue to act upon what is in the heart even if that is not our intent.
After being involved (submerged actually, in a very good way) these last 7 months many changes have occurred, along with many ideas of what to do with what I now see. My life with my husband has changed for the better, not that it was bad before, but it is much more enriched, as we both have been involved in this movement and have been able to share the meaning of "Rediscovery of the Heart" and how it has brightened our lives. Being on the same page, as partners, in such an important connection, that cannot be measured, but is greatly felt.
Tom, my husband, says, " If it had not been for what we have learned from the "Rediscovery of the Heart Institute" and also from Alex; I would not have been able to deal with all the requirements and interactions it has taken to complete the design of this last house." You see Tom is suffering from the beginning stages of Parkinson's disease. Before his involvement with this movement, he was afraid to be alone and I had to be with him at all times. His left hand shakes, (of course he is left handed) causing it to be very difficult for him to draw plans. Sure he has his straight edges, curves etc. to follow, but printing all he has to print would be impossible if it were not for his medication and the support he now feels with a strong prayer life using what he has learned from this movement. He has completed the house and as we speak he is at the county submitting the plans, by him self. Tom's entire career has been developing and designing communities in CA, AZ, and CO. His wife's cancer took all of his savings (millions), since she could not be insured. This and the economy the last few years have been very difficult for him. As you can see, we have a very caring and strong man that now has some peace and excitement back in his life. Is he done? He says, "I am just getting started!" Is it hard at times? Of course it is. He wants to do more than he is able to do, but is also thankful for what he is now able to do.
The last half of my career in education, I was seeing many beliefs that I had, regarding learning and interactions with people coming together. The movement on "Brain Studies" that I started following in 1981 seemed to bear out much of what I believed.
I used the term "heart" many times in talking to teachers, and principals about their interactions with students, parents and colleagues. To me it included being empathetic, understanding, listening, constantly learning more about ones profession. It was this belief that caught my attention when Alex announced "Larry was coming out with his work." I had desire for understanding the "heart," but I didn't realize the journey I was about to take.
I have always felt very blessed to be able to live my dream of becoming a teacher that began when I was in third grade. My career has been very rewarding, exciting and also exhausting, much of the time. But now that I retired, I felt a void in learning and growing, until I came across the understanding of the "heart."
One of the main things that inspired me was how prayer and meditation was a key part of what we are about. This was a fit for me. Consequently, it has been very rewarding and thought provoking to emerge into the additional writings that have been shared with me during the mentorship. I have read nothing that goes against what I believe, but has sharpened and brought out the actions of those beliefs more and more. The new understanding I have of the "heart" has helped me heal experiences in the past, things within my family, in the neighborhood and my school, as I grew up. My quietness began in first grade when my teacher asked me not to sing with the other kids. I was to "act" like I was singing. I remember being called shy. Recently, I discovered where that began. It was when the school children, first grade also, were asked to sing for our new school dedication. When it was time to sing, I ran crying to my Mom, hiding behind her. Up until now I had not connected singing with my shyness. Once you are told you are shy, you live it! I have fought that all of my life.
So you can see, the journey continues. I am just grateful that I have been given these insights and skills that continue to help me move beyond many such things and gain more peace in my life.
So what to do with all of this? First, the goal is to share with everyone. Which seems to just happen. The next step is to continue to grow personally. Then I would like to share what I have discovered with teachers and principals, especially.
Thanks for all of your time, your sharing and your insights.
Heart to Heart,
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