I Can Do Hard Things, by Susan Austin-Crumpton

“Do I prefer to grow up and relate to life directly,
Or do I choose to live and die in fear?”
                                                         Pema Chodron

I can do hard things.
I didn’t know that when I was younger. I thought it was all about being talented, special, and somehow gifted. I knew I was not those things. So, I believed I could not do hard and difficult things.

The study of Kabbalah taught me the most difficult lessons that helped me make sense of my life. I had to learn to carry both the good and the bad within me coming to trust there was Universal and Divine Wisdom within both of them. It was simply up to me to decide how to behave and how to think that determined the good or evil of the action.

I had to learn to know that in order to trust my own empowerment, I had to first make friends with my vulnerability and powerlessness.

It was not easy. I had to take apart my entire personal view of myself as well as my learned but not always healthy world view. I realized I am what I am most fearful of being, a helpless wounded and vulnerable self.

I learned and experienced myself as a reflection of all of the goodness and forgiveness of mankind and even god herself. To me God is both inner beauty and spiritual fervor and purpose reflected through me by simply being truly honest with myself. My only sin is that I do not recognize my inner “goodness.”
I seemed I had turned away from and even hid from myself and others the only thing that would really change me. That is, I am a mirror reflection of the Divine as all humans are at their core.
It seems to me that being human is an incredible gift and opportunity to receive this Divinity.  To embrace this gift within. To become aware that we are all one at our center even if we can’t see it in the actions and behaviors of others.
Maybe that is what we love and see in newborn babies? We all start out shining with goodness and vulnerability. It’s what we do with it that makes us capable of doing hard things.

Susan Austin-Crumpton
   Executive Director & Founder
   The Estuary, Inc.


Susan Austin-Crumpton

Susan Austin-Crumpton, Executive Director and Founder of The Estuary and The School of Healing Arts. Susan’s intention to be fully present and alive with passion and joy requires an authenticity that is her hallmark. Dedication to study and commitment to her clients and students provides The Estuary and the community involved with purpose and meaning not often found in traditional leadership. Susan Austin-Crumpton speaks of The Estuary as being like a wheel, with the staff being each of the spokes, the programs and services as the rim and she is the hub of energy and identity at the center. As the founder of The Estuary and The School of Healing Arts, she has developed the healing techniques and skills taught by the school and integrated into the individual practices of the staff. Susan’s leadership, innovative practice methods and classes have created the foundation of The Estuary and The School. Her varied career history as business owner, a teacher, and a psychotherapist, make her uniquely qualified to bring grounding to healing practices that originate outside the medical and psychological mainstream. Her techniques are truly complimentary to allopathic medicine and traditional psychotherapy, not in conflict with them, as is evidenced by the community support and acceptance over the past twenty years. As the primary teacher at The School of Healing Arts she combines the techniques of energy healing and psychology with Kabbalistic principles into her psychotherapy techniques that bring lasting change into the lives of those who work with her. She works with individuals and groups specializing in depression, anxiety, couples, health issues, addiction, and spiritual connection to life’s meaning and purpose. Susan has completed four years of study in healing science with The Barbara Brennan School of Healing Science and three years of study in Integrative Kabbalistic Healing with Jason Shulman's A Society of Souls. She also holds a degree in counseling psychology from the University of Louisville. She is a pastoral counselor ordained by The Estuary. Susan specializes in integrating transpersonal psychology with energy therapies effectively embodying the mind, body and spirit connection. She has been in private practice for 18 years serving individual processes, coupleship work, group experiences, and health related issues. She is the primary teacher at The School of Self Healing Arts and teaches transpersonal psychology, energy anatomy and therapies, world religion, and experiential therapy techniques. Susan is married and has two daughters and two grandchildren. She loves to study, to learn and grow personally and professionally, and is committed to the well being of her family, students and clients.