The Journey from Hopeless to Healing with Ruthie Lindsey
At seventeen years old, Ruthie Lindsey was hit by an ambulance outside of a gas station in rural Louisiana. She broke her neck, punctured her lungs, and ruptured her spleen. Doctors performed a spinal cord fusion using wire and miraculously, she walked out of the hospital within a month.
Only a few years later, newly married and settling into adulthood, a simple turn of her head left her body riddled with chronic pain. Her case confounded medical professionals and in the months that followed, she became addicted to narcotic painkillers, depressed, and bedridden. After dozens of visits to specialists and surgeons, a doctor discovered that the wire holding her neck together was piercing her brain stem. Without another surgery, she would be paralyzed.
As she prepared for the procedure, her father passed away suddenly, her marriage began to collapse, and she surrendered her spirit to dependency and to suffering. The surgery repaired her spine but she still felt broken, inside and out. Until she chose to change her narrative.
Ruthie went home to the same town where she almost lost her life. She decided to learn joy again, to retrain her spirit to soothe her physical pain, to salvage strength from her suffering. She traded fentanyl for sunsets and morphine for picking wildflowers on the side of the road. Ruthie stopped using her body as a hiding place and started using it as her bridge to connect with the world.
Now a speaker, author, podcast host, and social media figure, Ruthie travels the globe sharing her story, empowering others to find purpose in their pain, to look for beauty in the midst of their brokenness. Her memoir, There I Am: The Journey from Hopelessness to Healing is now available (AND IT’S AMAZING!!).
RESOURCES & LINKS MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:
SHORT ON TIME? Here are some key topics we covered…
2:00 – A horrific accident, her first miracle & Ruthies rescue dog, Sissy Spacek
7:15 – Sex, religion and getting married young
8:15 – The split second when everything changed & chronic pain took over Ruthie’s body
9:27 – Four and a half years living in bed : narcotics, crippling pain & checking out
12:00 – Losing her father & profound lessons from his life
20:07 – Her breaking point & the end of her marriage
22:05 – Weaning off pain narcotics & facing her pain
24:40 – *TOOL* Ruthie’s Joy list. Make a list of everything you loved before the pain.
30:00 – When pain becomes an access point to healing, love & light
34:00 – Reparenting wounds
35:00 – **TOOL** Ask your inner child what they need in order to heal and write down the response with your non-dominant hand
35:15 – It’s never to late to go back and create the most beautiful childhood of your life
37:00 – **TOOL** What is Onsite?
40:53 – Ruthie’s relationship to pain today
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