No Pressure, No Diamonds: Mining for Gifts in Illness and Loss

No Pressure, No Diamonds: Mining for Gifts in Illness and Loss

by Teri A Dillion
No Pressure, No Diamonds: Mining for Gifts in Illness and Loss

No Pressure, No Diamonds: Mining for Gifts in Illness and Loss

by Teri A Dillion


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How do you define hope and healing when faced with an early death?

At 35 and newly married, psychotherapist and Buddhist practitioner Teri Dillion had tidy answers on offer for creating a meaningful and beautiful life. But once diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's disease (ALS) and told to get her affairs in order before facing total paralysis and death, she finds all smug psychology and easy equanimity no match for her new harrowing prognosis.

With a humorous exploration of the current landscapes of alternative medicine and self-help, No Pressure, No Diamonds recounts Teri's powerful journey while shedding light on the fragile blessings of embodiment in general. As she grows increasingly disillusioned with toxic positivity and bypassing spiritual gurus in her determined pursuit of a miraculous cure, she's forced to examine her deepest beliefs and define her own faith about hope, and healing.

Inspiring, entertaining, and deeply moving, this memoir will resonate with anyone forced to grapple with chronic or terminal illness. Teri's story teaches us how the most brilliant jewels of meaning and resilience can be found not in conventional narratives of triumphant recovery, but in what we painstakingly and lovingly carve for ourselves out of life's roughest blows.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780578736884
Publisher: Teri A. Dillion
Publication date: 11/16/2020
Pages: 340
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.76(d)

About the Author

Teri A. Dillion is a licensed psychotherapist, addictions counselor, clinical supervisor, teacher, and meditation instructor. As an award-winning group process leader, she taught Large Group Process in Naropa University's Contemplative Psychotherapy program and has presented at regional conferences on group dynamics and leadership. In retirement, she now explores what an ethical, dogma-free, engaged life of recovery looks like once spiritual bypassing has lost its luster. This exploration includes the humbling lessons of her own early-onset neurodegenerative illness, which she excavates through writing, robust humor, and a hard-won trust in human resilience. She lives in Boulder, Colorado with her husband and two cats.

Table of Contents



Part I: Hunger

  1. The Soul's Call

Part II: Tumbling

  1. Loss of Innocence
  2. The Art of Unraveling
  3. Seductive Illusion of Triumph
  4. Punches and Kisses
  5. Being Ghosted, Being Held
  6. Exploring the Roots of Illness
  7. Mind/Body Blame and Shame

Part III: Unburdening

  1. The Visionary Therapist
  2. A Doubter's Flirt with Faith
  3. Surviving Dislocation
  4. Spinning Heads
  5. The Unbearable Intolerability of Receiving Help
  6. Blessed Perspective
  7. The Wisdom to Know the Difference
  8. An Adventure of Vulnerability
  9. Making Offerings
  10. Sacred Anger

Part IV: Grace

  1. An Empowered Surrender
  2. Radical Revisioning
  3. Open-Eyed Goodbyes
  4. The Forest of Forgiveness
  5. The Safety of Death

Closing Thoughts: Mining the Jewels

Afterword by John Wagner


About the Author

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