THE MOLECULE THAT SAVED MY LIFE
I have shifted my performance work in these last years to a more clinical-presentations kind of approach related to my 2016 Show — “We Interrupt this Life to Bring You …”
Mind you, my idea of a clinical presentation is quite different from those I often share the stage with at conferences, trainings, and workshops. While my esteemed colleagues are presenting their well-informed and educational power point demonstrations, I continue the very personal, vulnerable, truth-telling style that my theatre stage work has exemplified, and to which I remain passionately committed.
So while I have missed the theatre stage these years, I’ve been endlessly grateful to share my experiences of participating in an FDA MDMA Clinical Trial, and how doing so has impacted my life and steered it in a direction I didn’t see coming. I describe it as: a dream come true I didn’t know I had.
Here are some places I’ve been sharing my story:
In early March 2020, my colleague and long-time friend, Jim Matto-Shepard and I presented to the Redwood Empire chapter of the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (ReCAMFT) monthly chapter meeting. It was, by far, the largest of their meetings ever. Our presentation, entitled: Psychedelic-Assisted Psychotherapy — The New Frontier: A Highly Effective Treatment for Depression, Anxiety, PTSD, Suicidality, and End-of-Life Existential Angst was met with great enthusiasm and appreciation. There are two recordings from this event, my performance piece is on the first one: Part One – ReCAMFT Presentation – 3/2020. And here’s Part Two – ReCAMFT Presentation 3/2020
In November 2019, I was part of an extraordinary line up of presenters at the San Francisco Jung Institute’s conference: Encountering the Numinous: Expanded States of Consciousness, Depth Psychotherapy, Analysis and Psychedelics. While I haven’t yet received the recording from the event, I was sought out by numerous conference participants who spoke generously of the quality of my performance and how it profoundly impacted them. I will share it here when it becomes available. Here’s the flyer from the event: SF Jung Conference.
In October 2019, I participated in a fundraiser event for Sage Institute in Oakland, California. Sage is a clinic of some outstanding colleagues who provide psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy, and are especially committed to serving the marginalized and disenfranchised of our community. I’m waiting for a recording of the event. In the meantime, I was quite humbled by the standing ovation my performance received, and the many kudos folks offered that evening. Here’s the flyer which promoted the event: Sage Event.
As part of the CIIS Certificate in Psychedelic Therapies & Research program, of which I am a recent graduate, I presented my show “The Molecule that Saved My Life” at their week-long training in both June 2018 and 2019. It’s incredible valuable for students to be able to personally witness a clinical trial participant’s story outside of the many videos that are required watching. This is a video of my live presentation in 2019: CIIS CPTR June 2019 Performance (if a password is needed, it’s: MAPS).
In December 2018, I was invited to present at a health center in Mendocino County who was eager to educate the community about psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy, and how it might be of benefit to those in need. Here’s the video of that presentation: Mendocino County MDMA Presentation – 12/2018
As in 2019, I had the wonderful opportunity to share my story in the CIIS CPTR program in June 2018, this time amongst my fellow students in our cohort. It was a risk to show myself so vulnerably, and the many in that group who have become dear friends to me continue to speak to the power of that performance.
In April 2017, I spoke at the Psychedelic Sciences Conference in Oakland, California, where thousands of people from around the world gathered to learn and to share about psychedelic medicines. Here’s the video of the panel discussion in which I took part: 2017 Psychedelic Science Panel Presentation.
Then, in September 2017, while not a performance, I was interviewed by CNBC about my experience as a Trial Participant. Here’s the article: CNBC Article – 9/2017