“So many of us do not know our own story. A story about who we are, not what we have done. About what we faced to build what we have built, what we have drawn upon and risked to do it, what we have thought, felt and feared and discovered through the events of our lives. The real story that belongs to us alone.”--Rachel Naomi Remen
Alice is at stage in life of harvesting the fruit of an interesting journey, including breaking gender barriers as an Air Force Intelligence briefing officer for Vietnam–bound B-52 bomber pilots---and---leaving the service early because of being bothered by that war.
Below are a few samplings of Alice Holstein's writings. When you visit the Writings Page, you can read the full presentations, essays, and articles.
From Adversity To Rebirth
As we all know, the traditional story of Easter revolves around the suffering and resurrection of Jesus. While Unitarians do not observe this tradition, I believe there is merit in examining the process of suffering and rebirth in ordinary lives. Much to my dismay, I became an unwilling expert on this subject over some 12 years of almost unbearable suffering, from 1995 when I was diagnosed with manic depression, until 2007 when I began to get my feet on the ground in earnest.
By the time I finally developed some coherent conclusions about manic depression, otherwise known as bi-polar mood disorder, I was so battered from dealing with it that I could hardly stand up again to tell the story. One day, in the midst of my shakiness, however, I realized that telling the story would help my healing. I will begin towards the end of that path that has been both tortuous as well as a route to authentic selfhood.
As an intelligence officer in the Air Force during the Vietnam war, Alice Holstein broke barriers. Stationed at various military posts, including Guam and Okinawa, she was the first woman to be sent overseas with the B-52's. She was also the first woman to brief satillite photography and the first woman to be sent to a bomb wing leve, where she managed a combat wing level intelligence shop.
Reframing Mental Illness does this, helping people find wholeness when they redefine their experiences. The stigma of being damaged goods, or of bearing major or minor suffering, become a hero’s journey of tests and trials, seen anew as lessons and gifts.
So many of us do not know our own story. A story about who we are, not what we have done. About what we have faced to build what we have built, what we have drawn upon and risked to do it, what we have thought felt, feared and discovered through the events of our lives. The real story that belongs to us alone.