This week’s show was really a testament to the love and support of family, and the creative willingness of survivors to overcome trauma and rebuild their lives. My in-studio guest Debbie Schmidt and the artist Dan Rhema joined me for a candid conversation about:

  • the experience of trauma
  • how trauma changes us physically, emotionally and socially
  • how family support positively alters the recovery process
  • what we learn and what we gain from building a life after trauma

Truly inspiring, both Debbie and Dan show what can happen when we are challenged — and then rise to the occasion by awakening in ourselves the quest for a new identity.

Read about my guests:

Debbie Schmidt  is a 62 year old woman … wife, mother, soon-to-be grandmother, care giver, friend and recent cancer survivor.  She was born and raised in New York … born in the city, raised on Long Island.  She has lived in New York, Maryland, Connecticut and Florida.  She is a college graduate with almost 40 years of employment in the corporate sector.  Debbie is an avid reader and enjoys painting and sketching.

Debbie’s story of survival is one of surrender and appreciation.  Her journey begins with diagnosis and continues as she searches for ways to live a meaningful life.  It has been a time of transformation. Her mission is to live with health, happiness and purpose.

Dan Rhema, artist, writer, and filmmaker lives in historic Old Louisville, Kentucky. His art has been exhibited nationally, in solo and group shows, for the past fifteen years. The unique unfolding of Dan’s creativity has been documented in numerous print, radio and television interviews. Dan’s picture books include The Day the Animals Lost Their True Colors (a 2002 Independent Publisher Book Awards Finalist), One Tiny Twig, and Bluegrass Breeze. His most recent book, I Close My Eyes to See: The Dan Rhema Story As Told to Kevin Wilson, documents Dan’s transformation into an artist after surviving a deadly combination of three different strains of dengue fever. For further information visit Dan: Facebook @ Dan Rhema Art. (Photo by Steven Clark)