Becoming a Sage by Sharon Wegscheider-Cruse
“Sharon Wegscheider-Cruse has been a life-altering influence for so many people, including me. I first met Sharon in my mother’s living room, thirty-six years ago, when she was doing a weekend of work with my family of origin. After that weekend, I felt a burden lift from my shoulders and it was the beginning of what I would now call recovery from the childhood trauma I experienced growing up with parental addiction. I felt that I was seeing behind a screen, into the back stage of addiction, insight to what we now call ACoA issues, at that time all of this went unnamed and was often times invisible. Sharon was instrumental in making that experience visible. Along with making it safe to surface, she helped to open up great inner surges toward healing, happiness, and celebration—and towards taking charge of my life.” — Tian Dayton, PhD, TEP, author
Sharon Wegscheider-Cruse, founder of Onsite Workshops and founding chairperson of the National Association of Children of Alcoholics (NACoA), has brought hope and healing to many people through her work as an author, counselor, trainer, and lecturer. In her newest book, Becoming a Sage, she provides readers with a look inside her life through short stories spanning from her earliest years to her retirement and current work. In addition, Becoming a Sage imparts advice on how to cultivate wisdom, share stories, and fully experience what life has to offer.
Wegscheider-Cruse begins Becoming a Sage by offering readers a glimpse into her childhood, her high school years, and her adult life. Part One of the book tells Wegscheider-Cruse’s personal story—highlighting the life of a woman who stuttered when she was a child, who had alcoholic parents, who experienced more than one divorce, and who ultimately became involved in some of the most influential addiction-related organizations of our times. Readers will find her story inspiring, touching, and relatable as she reveals the hardships she endured, the lessons she learned, and the wisdom that ultimately changed and propelled her life to where it is now. Throughout Part One, Wegscheider-Cruse highlights the “sages” who made a difference in her life, from family members to teachers to professional colleagues.
In Part Two of Becoming a Sage, Wegscheider-Cruse defines what it means to be a sage, someone “who has learned to extract wisdom from experience and learned—sometimes with great difficulty—to choose to ‘let the experience go.’” She outlines steps for beginning the transformation into a sage, and details what the power of a sage means to those who encounter them. In addition, Wegscheider-Cruse touches on the importance of storytelling, of sharing experiences, and of imparting wisdom to others. Becoming a Sage concludes with more stories of Wegscheider-Cruse’s personal sages, including Bob Subby, Jerry Moe, Claudia Black, and Larry Cumpston.
Becoming a Sage is a moving testament to life and all the infinite wisdom it can provide. Everyone from counselors and clients to family and friends will find Wegscheider-Cruse’s story uplifting and full of advice for living a fuller and more compassionate life. As the epilogue of the book states, “Do your best to not let your stories die or allow them to be forgotten. Bless the world with them.”
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