While watching our government try to reconstruct our economy, it occurs to me that we are inundated every moment with the news about what’s next and AIG and how we got here and how we’re going to get out of it all. In the midst of it people are living their lives in transition—many without jobs and those with jobs worrying when the job might end. People are also living with all the circumstances of life including children, illness, pets, relatives, etc.

Recently I was asked to answer some questions on a radio show for a young woman excited about sharing health information to the public in this venue. I told her I would be happy to do it and we began the planning. Then less than a week before we were to do the recording, she emailed that her doctor told her that morning that her bone marrow transplant didn’t work and she needed to address her cancer in a different way. As a result she had to put aside many of her activities to attend to this task. The radio show needed to be postponed indefinitely. I was shocked to hear she had been dealing with this disease for nine years and amazed at all she had accomplished in that time.

In reflecting on the economic fallout and life in general, I recall a story from Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen in her book My Grandfather’s Blessing. A Japanese colleague of hers began folding white paper cranes soon after his wife was diagnosed with cancer. The white crane is a symbol of long life, peace, harmony, and balance.  People who are ill will sometimes fold 1000 Origami cranes in the hope of finding the strength to heal. Origami was not his wife’s way, so Hal made them for her. Each morning as he lovingly folded a crane for his wife, he would meditate over her recovery and the importance of her life.  One day he realized that his own patients were no different so he began making a crane for each patient scheduled for surgery the next day. One of those patients was also a patient of Rachel’s who had resisted the necessary surgery for her cancer but finally complied. As this patient entered Rachel’s office the day before her surgery, Rachel noticed the exquisitely folded crane and asked about it. “My surgeon made it for me,” she said and told me the story of the thousand cranes. “Can you believe how beautifully it is made?” she said in wonder. “The man who is going to operate on me tomorrow can make such a thing with his hands. And he made it for me. How could I possibly not heal?”

            So, if you too feel an urge to help others heal, find your way to assist in their healing whether healing from illness or economic crises. Cranes, prayers, thoughts, and words all express the energy of our love. If you’d like to make a crane for the woman in Allen, let me know and I’ll take it to her when I take mine. 

Life rolls on, ebbs and flows, begins and ends. The economy ebbs and flows, begins and ends. And though life and economic status ends, relationships don’t. So I look out the window at the daffodils and tulips popping up from the dirt. Ever year I smile in amazement when they come and feel gratitude for all the seasons and people in life.


Contact Pamela Simmons, Licensed Professional Counselor & Relationship Coach, at 214-674-8759 Contact Me or