My Radiant Hell – Coming Soon


“Silencing Echoes”, which was the original name of my personal healing memoir, takes a look at the various ways we attempt to silence the painful echoes from our past with frequent damaging effects on our health and spirituality as well as those around us. This non-fiction book is based on the parts of my life that not only hurt me the most, but taught me the most. The primary focus is not on the horror, but the healing and choices I somehow made to not be a victim in spite of my history.  “My echoes” of abuse were very difficult to silence. But I did. And, sadly, my story is not even close to the worst stories of abuse that exist out there.

The book has morphed from those beginning days, and has been renamed to “My Radiant Hell – Healing Tidbits from a Wounded Soul.”  While writing, I discovered I no longer needed to share all the horror – I needed to share the healing.

So, this new book, coming out soon is going to touch everyone’s heart – whether they are the victim or the perpetrator. There is help here for everyone – victims and readers alike. And yes, there is help for the ones who use violence in its various forms to control others.

When will this book arrive?  End of 2017.  Maybe sooner.

Check back for updates.

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Discovering Truth

“Abuse was part of my life and keeping that “secret” separated me from others. My safe zone was nature, so as much as possible I kept my face toward the sky with the wind blowing through my hair, my mind and my heart. Love was only given to animals because they comforted me unconditionally.

What I discovered with the passing of time was revealing the abuse to others wasn’t the main contributing factor of my healing. The most powerful fuel was understanding a complicated yet simple, often forgotten “truth”.”

I was and am stronger than the abuse“.

Excerpt from “My Radiant Hell – Healing Tidbits from a Wounded Soul.”  Coming Soon

I Am The Memory Keeper

Longing, loss, lost and grief. Some of the hardest things to work with and I’m not talking about just the death of “a person” – it can be the death of a routine, a recipe you lost from your great-great-grandmother, a job opportunity you thought you had in the bag, or you just found out they discontinued your favorite brand of toilet paper. Grief is not something to be “cured” or “get over” – hell no. You have to live through it, grapple with it, smack it down and watch it bounce back up and feel it tear your heart to pieces. The bummer is in our society, we are taught to deny our grief.  We can have it for a little bit, but not too long because we need to “get over it”.

John Green said the following in his novel, “The Fault in Our Stars”.

“The pleasure of remembering had been taken from me, because there was no longer anyone to remember with. It felt like losing your co-rememberer which meant losing the memory itself, as if the things we’d done were less real and important than they had been hours before.”

POWERFUL!  Boy, I personally understand this quote to its tightest throat-strangling point. I lost my entire birth family before I was 50. Parents and siblings.  All the birth-family participants that co-created my childhood memories have passed on. That is how I became the “Keeper of Memories”.

Brene Brown says when we experience loss we will then have longing, which is a type of “yearning for wholeness, for understanding, for meaning, for the opportunity to regain or even simply touch what we’ve lost”.  It seems most of us try to keep those longings to ourselves so we don’t appear weak  (what the “f” is that all about?  Who taught us that!?!”)

LOST LOST LOST – Frozen in time.  Nothing is normal and we fear telling people we feel lost. Why is this happening? The experience of grief – the effect of grief actually, is that we must reorient ourselves to our physical, emotional and social world.  Again. With “I’m Grieving” stamped on your forehead.  Remember, this happens from “grieving” anything, not just a person.  The loss of your sanity, the shock of being told you are terminally ill. We forget how to behave, where to park the car, or stare at a word and not comprehend its meaning even if life depended on it.

How do we pull ourselves out of this quagmired quicksand box of grief?  Carefully. Gently and within our own time-frame.  And, dammit, by forgiving.  The new “f” word in society. For forgiveness to occur, something has to die.  Here we go again, the longing, loss, lost and grief. To forgive, we must feel the pain of each of those. Forgiveness involves death and grief.

Forgiving those that died, forgiving the boss that didn’t give you that well-deserved promotion, forgiving your husband for watching football every damn Sunday, forgiving your hairdresser for the stupid “doo” she gave you just before a wedding. It’s all connected – forgiveness is paramount.  That word has made me cringe my entire life.  I hate it.

So, let’s replace that “f” word with “Letting Go” – is not just to be altruistic, letting go really is the best form of “self-interest”.  It doesn’t exclude feeling hatred and anger – that’s all part of being human. To that point, I read this from somewhere . . .

“You should never hate yourself for hating others who do terrible things:  The depth of your love is shown by the extent of your anger.”

I’ve been rambling on for quite some time so I’m going to complete this long-winged musing with a poignant and exceptionally “in your face” quote by C.S. Lewis.

“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly be broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable.

To love is to be vulnerable.

Don’t Bullshit

Best piece of wisdom I’ve read in quite some time.  Wondering about something, if we practiced this wisdom regularly, in a kind and gentle fashion of course, would war and violence diminish?
Intriguing thought, especially since this style of communication has worked beautifully for New Yorker’s for years.
They don’t bullshit – they are honest and direct.
Am thinking that is a good thing.


Writing with Passion – Healing with Purpose

Some of you may not know I am a writer and a Doctor of Natural Health.  I share that information to set the stage as you begin to read the words that follow.  I have struggled for some time on how to blend both “parts” of me together, and today, I discovered that I no longer need to blend them together because they sustain both me and each other – they are a natural blend.  I now choose to present them to the world differently – in the form of mind-stretching writings about healing among other things while continuing to personally heal those who seek it – in perfect balance and harmony.

The following is from my journal where I
finally discovered what already existed naturally. 

25086713_m“Nature and natural have been part of me from the beginning of my life.  As I grew older and created and carried the burdens of survival and safety, as well as the beliefs and illusions that come with them, I began to people-please and hide to remain safe.  During this time, my core values – the truth of me – were swept aside so I could become what I needed to be to survive and co-exist in my everyday chaotic world.

Recently, in the space of a micro-second, I remembered that as a child I played in dirt, ate dirt, and loved to drink water from rivers that contained small visible particles of decaying leaf matter, some sand, a smidge of slime and a big dose of healthy nourishment and mysterious things that used to exist in those rivers.  It never harmed my tummy.

It is called “wild water”.  I’d sit by the river and study how it forcefully tumbled and tossed its way around boulders and created angry foam along the edges.  My soul would ride the water for a bit and when I was thirsty, I drank from the river.  It was a wonderful fulfilling visceral experience on an instinctual level.  That was my truth back then in spite of the cruelty that existed in my life.

The happiness and contentment of those moments frequently sneak into my conscience memory.  Back then, wild water contained all the elements of life in a healthy form.  Through reflection and self-discovery, today I choose to begin drinking “wild water” again, to rebuild my soul, redesign my life and support my purpose.  Through wild water I will sustain my energy, my path, and introduce to the world my natural intuitive ability to deeply perceive the healing needs and beauty that lives within the souls of all people.

I am a guide and advocate for the people who are lost, forgotten or ignored that may have by choice or circumstance, forgotten how to be healthy and whole.  And as such, together, in gentle collaboration, we will begin the journey of discovering the personal quintessence of balance that exists within all people and bring light into the darkness.

My life’s purpose is to reach out as far as possible to guide and empower others to become healthy, balanced and fully present in this world.  One moment at a time – one person at a time.  Naturally.”

Kicking Ash


It has been said that “firewood is not the fire”.

Let’s think that through for a moment. Assuming this example is correct, firewood is the “fuel” to fire’s needs.  Firewood would still be firewood without the fire and remains so until fire uses it.  When fire uses the firewood to fuel itself, it morphs the firewood into ash. The fire actually changes the shape, look and feel of the firewood by destroying its previous existence as simple firewood.  Interesting.

Let’s apply that to a second example, “anger is not violence”.  Anger is the fuel violence needs.  Anger would still be anger without violence, it remains the same until violence uses it.  When violence seeks out and uses anger to fuel its violence, as with fire and firewood, violence changes the shape and look of anger by intensifying it to the level of abusive and harmful proportions unlike its previous existence as simple anger.  Anger has now become buddies with violence. Violent anger spreads like wildfire – leaving only ashes. Interesting.

And true.

As I was recovering from the abuse of my past, I was left with the metaphor of “ashes”.  What do I do with these ashes?  Study them, move them around, try to make sense of the patterns within the ash?

Eventually I decided to just kick the ash out of my life.

NOTE: The above is part of my “monkey bar musing” as I’m getting closer to finishing my book, “Silencing Echoes”.  The lines above may make the cut.


Singsong Style

Today I’m writing in a rhythmic sing-song style by attentively listening to my inner voice.  I begin to understand its lyrics, hear its melody, and feel the tone of its voice.  It sometimes sounds passionate, sometimes urgent, then rushed and demanding, but suddenly the light flows in showing me the cheerful side of it all again.

Ah, got over the stuckness again.

Blissful . . .



Book+$1 For Domestic Abuse

“Heart to Heart: The Path to Wellness”, a book in which I am a contributing author, contains the stories of 43 amazing authors who have each shared their personal and inspirational true-life story of healing.  I invite each of you, right now, to consider joining me in a campaign to get this book into the hands of the people who really need a gift of hopethe victims of domestic abuse.


Created By Nature Wellness, LLC, is making a matching book donation to a domestic abuse safe house/shelter in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area for each “Heart to Heart” book ordered. The minimum goal is 100 books. These books belong in the hands of the people who need “stories of hope” during their personally desperate times. Why is the book so important? Because everything in their life was lost or taken away from them when they had to flee to a safe place.Think of that for a moment – they HAD to find safety. It may have been a choice of life and death for them.


Please help get as many books as possible to the victims of domestic abuse.  If just one of the forty-three stories in the “Heart to Heart” book helps a single victim of domestic abuse, we helped someone realize there is enough hope to begin taking tiny steps on the path out of the horror.  We can help save a soul – possibly a life.

In addition, beginning today, Friday, March 13, 2015, Created By Nature Wellness, LLC, will also donate $1 for each “Heart to Heart:The Path to Wellness” book ordered to the domestic shelter. This will continue through April 13, 2015 – 30 days of focusing on helping someone who does not exist in the assumed everyday condition called “safety”. Simply click the picture on the left and you will be taken directly to the “Books By Debbie Engelmann” order site.  At checkout, enter the Discount Code “SAFETY” which will give YOU 15% off “Heart to Heart: The Path to Wellness”.  My gift to you for helping someone in need.

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I invite everyone to email me with comments and/or thoughts on not only the book, but how it feels to be involved in helping others who need support and kindness in difficult situations.  Simply click “Contact Debbie” on the ordering site.