My Stories, Myself, by Susan Austin-Crumpton

Driving into Arches National Park in Utah, I have this joyous feeling: I have never been so happy in my life! I am with my beloved husband and two glorious grandsons. It is a precious time.

Then, I remember a saying I heard in the news, “Everyone is living a desperate life inside too. Be kind”. I have a desperate life inside of me also. It feels less desperate the more I know WHO I AM. My grandson tells the story of an African American teacher at his high school who replied to the question, by mostly white students, “How do you manage so much racial violence in this country?”  His answer was: “I just focus on knowing who I am.”  

I loved that answer.

So what’s my story? And, do my stories ever change ME? I was reading Rachel Naomi Remen, who says she heard somewhere we need our stories more than food to survive! My stories tell me about who I am, they help me decide what is possible for me, and they help me define what I may call upon. However, my story, as well as your story, is never finished. I keep adding to my story. Every new birth and every next death as well as every experience, every "ah-ha" moment, every study and book I read, every person I meet, all add to and continue to define my story.

I am reminded of a poem by Rainer Maria Rilke:


Love the questions (about yourself) as if they were
Locked rooms or books written in a foreign language.
Don’t watch for answers,
Which could not be given to you now,
Because you would not be able to live them.
And the point is to live everything.
Live the questions now.
Perhaps then, someday far into the future,
You will gradually, without even noticing it, 
Live your way into the answers.

I am sitting in the cleft of a rock in the shade.  My family has scrambled up the trail in 100 degree sun. I am in the shade. . . waiting . . . enjoying who I Am and adding to my stories and to myself. I am living my way into my stories, into my answers.

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.