How to Heal from Chronic Heartbreak.

Via Renee Baribeau
on Dec 14, 2012
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If your heart is still broken it may not be the time to find new love.

One time a friend lost her son to a rave concert. Observing her grieve with a cheerful smile pasted on her face made my judgment feathers stand up on the back of my neck. My own experience of love loss once left me crumpled in a darkened closet, where I planned on sitting till I died, and here was a mother who lost her son—apparently coping in her pain.

Questioning her sincerity, I asked the question: “How?”

She told me her faith in Jehovah was her key. She explained her belief that if heartbreak overtook her like a flooded river following a storm, then she would not be available to God’s next assignment.

Her faith is not my path, but maybe it was spirit that wiggled me from the despair I’d felt while crumpled in that closet. Eventually, and reluctantly, I shuffled forward to discover my work.

Ill-prepared for another heartbreak, I decided (at the advice of a wise mentor) I would remain single until my goal list consisted of qualities rather than accomplishments and until my heart was open to love and to the possibility of being hurt again. In the meantime, her instructions included going out into nature to learn how to be a tree.

Until that time, my choice in partner resembled choosing from a menu at a diner where everything is greasy and laden in fat and sugar. It always feels good going down, but the full stomach always leads to gas and heartburn. Pursuing love in my life was no different.

Each new love had some qualities of a true partner, but always cloaked in unavailability and responsibility elsewhere. Falling in love, I felt like a rabid dog in heat, insatiable and foaming at the mouth. The more unavailable the partner, tracking for crumbs of attention became more important than loving me.

One day, a shaman presented me with a vision. In it, I sat atop a horse, feeling confident and well prepared for my journey, but suddenly love flung me to the ground. A standard joke in my life was just how harshly love did fling me around in a musical chairs way.

I opened my first restaurant to help realize my partner’s dream, but soon closed it to follow another love interest south. When she eventually snuck off in the night I opened another restaurant to give the third lover a job, and then quickly sold it to escape an affair with a waitress that I began, when my partner proved unable to do the job.

Finally in Denver, isolated from self again, the trunk arrived from California, again full of all my personal baggage. This time I knew that it was time to clean out the old patterns that no longer fit, and to stay out of relationship until I became the person I wanted to meet.

The black and blue heart almost closed.

Then one morning on a hike in Boulder, nearing the top of the trail, after trying desperately to become a tree, I stumbled into a cloud of love. From the limited vantage point of the trail, I could see only the back of someone sitting in a deep meditation, but the prevailing winds of love permeated the entire peak. I thought for sure I had found my soul mate. After all, I had made my decision just weeks before not to follow in a family tradition of becoming cold and embittered to romance.

Patiently I waited on a rock for the other to finish meditating. Alas, after waiting patiently while trying to calm my building excitement, a man in his late eighties turned and smiled.  In that moment I saw clearly how the love vibration has little to do with sexual attraction.

In order to become the I  that is me in you, it was clear that I had a great deal of work—there was a huge discrepancy between my physical attraction and energetic alignment to someone who was a true match for me.

From here, from this new understanding, the real work of attracting a true partner could finally begin.


Ed: Amy Cushing


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About Renee Baribeau

Renee Baribeau, “The Practical Shaman,”is a wind whistler, soul coach, Hay House author, inspirational speaker, and workshop leader. Renee is the author of Winds of Spirit, by the prestigious Hay House Publishing Co. Renee is known for her practical, down to earth approach to helping her clients find simple solutions to living an authentic life present. She believes insight gleaned from her rigorous transformational journey can help others find an easier softer quicker path to happiness. Learn more about The WindWork® at a Wind Whistling Ceremony here. Follow Renee on Facebook at The Practical Shaman for daily inspiration.


58 Responses to “How to Heal from Chronic Heartbreak.”

  1. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Thanks for leaving comments about how your heart has healed..

  2. A truly wonderful read. Straight from the heart, direct and engaging.
    Thanx for sharing it.

  3. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Thank you..

  4. ThePracticalShaman says:

    How true…I am happy I found mine.

  5. Inspiring story. I see so many people desperate
    To find the love that is waiting inside of their
    Own Heart.

  6. Tanya says:

    Renee …
    Love the striped down honesty dosed with insightful humor!
    Definitely looking forward to reading more and enjoying even more!
    Namaste … Tanya

  7. Audrey Reed says:

    Love that elusive creature that can enliven us or make us crumble.
    I thank you for your bold insight and dedication to self love for the healing of the planet.
    Dr Audrey Reed

  8. Susan Reiner says:

    Love your perspective on opening to love and then the whole world becomes beautiful!

  9. Inspiring story. Great read. Thank you for sharing your vulnerability.

  10. ZENgevity says:

    Great read, thank you! I love your language, it strikes the soul. "I stumbled into a cloud of love." Hiking is a great way to heal.

  11. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Thank you Tanya for reading and looking forward to more.

  12. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Thank you dear Audrey for your dedication to life and love.

  13. ThePracticalShaman says:

    It certainly does Susan..As dark as I went is as bright as I shine.

  14. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Transparency is the key to the heart. It is only when we withhold from giving to others what we seek, that we run the risk of shutting down completely.

  15. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Thank you. Love my hiking and trust that the one I seek is a hiker.

  16. Reaching out for oneself is a lifelong journey. With love, it requires to look inside of oneself to make the discoveries necessary to experience love on a deep level. Meditation, being silent each day for an hour, and judging no one are ways to find this kind of love. It is going inside the self rather look externally for love. First, one must love the self, before they can love another. Renee has captured this in "How to Heal from Chronic Heartbreak." Beautifully-written, deeply expressed and clearly shown, "How to Heal from Chronic Heartbreak", one can gain insight into oneself in their quest to love and to be loved.

    Donald L. Vasicek
    Olympus Films+, LLC
    The Zen of Writing
    [email protected]

  17. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Don I am so happy that we met at the darkest hour and you shared your hope and light.

  18. Ryan W. Balas says:

    At least you are thinking about a relationship! LOL! Great article. I seem to be good at stumbling into them and then stopping them when "fill in the blank…" happens. And, something I discussed with the Universe a few years ago, I am soooo tired of being everyone's therapist first with the possibility of a relationship later. Hey! Send me someone who wants to experience life, open my eyes to new experiences and be willing to share in mine! I think I need to go make another juice to balance out… 🙂

  19. What a magnicent wo-manifesto of self love. I have been there, done that, got the t-shirt. As a recovering co-dependent who erroneously believed I could fix, save, heal and kiss away partners' boo boos, mostly at their request, although sometimes unbidden, I have learned that savior behavior helps no one and blocks a full experience of a healthy relationship. In simmer mode with regard to relationship, welcoming a healthy partner with whom I can teach and learn, travel and do our right livelihood work in the world. Blessings on your journey, Renee

  20. It was my pleasure, Renee. Thank you for inviting me.

  21. Nancy Minger says:

    Love this Rene, I think I was on that very same trail at one time…….only my eighty-year old man was a drunk, beautiful woman with an accent, wearing a skirt and dancing in my bathroom. N

  22. So beautiful, Renee. I have the song "looking for love" by Johnny Lee in my head…your story will help so many who keep looking in the wrong places…

  23. Muselady11 says:

    A winding trail, indeed. My favorite bit is the discovery of the true identity of the love-vibed dude meditating on the mountain. 🙂 I've been in that place where the desire for desire takes over like an addiction and has had me wandering in winding circles of love gained and lost. Been in that dark closet, too. Excellent reminders of how far I've blossomed after 55 years. Love seeing you at peace with self, and therefore with others. Sexiest way to be!

  24. ThePracticalShaman says:


  25. ThePracticalShaman says:

    The song is bringing tears to my eys, but I guess I am really sensitive today.

  26. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Imagine my surprise. He became a mentor who started me reading Autobiography of a Yogi, which then took me to a Swami. The Swami did a prayer and the Heart break stayed behind as I moved forward. Had I not felt such a large attraction I may have kept walking.. Thank you for recognizing my peace as it is your peace too!

  27. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Still think Stand up comedy is in your future.

  28. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Thank you Edie, you are such a light.

  29. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Not only thinking about it, creating the spaciousness around it…By 2014 I will be with a soul mate.

  30. Stephanie says:

    Love is such a force. We do not know where it will lead us, but we know it when we feel it.

  31. Nancy Minger says:

    Rene…….I was thinking of calling it “fall down comedy” instead. So this blind girl walks into a bar…..:) 🙂 🙂

  32. Suzanne Fageol says:

    It is wise and true that we have to love ourselves first – then we will be open and ready to love another. It is also paradoxicaly true that if we reach our in universal love to others, we find our selves in love with ourselves and open to connection with others.

  33. Renee – It is an honor to know you! Over the past 15 years of knowing one another, I have observed you during the many experiences (and people) that "knocked you off your horse" only for you to re-group and open yourself to greater lessons in loving. I am grateful that you continue to release items off the accomplishment list choosing to open your heart wider and wider instead. You have written a beautiful post that is reflective of your deep heart wisdom.
    In gratitude, Mary

  34. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Love you Mary..Thank you for being such an amazing role model on positive pairing.

  35. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Hike up that hill every Thursday for months.

  36. Rosanne says:

    Renee……….I'm so impressed………….you so beautifully presented a pathway to and from love……… an important, realistic and so healthy way of expressing it

  37. Yes that is the paradox of love..

  38. Finding self love has been deep work of my soul.

  39. George says:

    Great article! I love the simplicity honesty and truth about your search for love – highly relatable!

  40. Glad you can relate.

  41. Fall down comedy, by blind girl designs..

  42. Asia Voight says:

    Powerful! Opening the door and releasing your shame of "failure" releases my shame, too, in a blow the door of the hinges kind of way! Thank you!

  43. Thank you Asia for you wise insights.

  44. Kate Smith says:

    Awesome Renee. Beautiful insights into love. Thanks for being such a continual inspiration.

  45. markjoseph says:

    Renee you have such a gift thanks so much for sharing this

  46. Debra Kamino says:

    This is a wonderful article that showcases the talent of this amazing human being and writer. It just shows that her diligence in overcoming her own fears and pain in her search for love and then being able to help everyone around her do the same is a generous gift to us all. I have had the pleasure to watch her writing skills grow over the last twenty years and can't wait to see what's next.

  47. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Thank you Kate for your light.

  48. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Thank you Mark…

  49. ThePracticalShaman says:

    Remember the mailbox. I wonder where that story will shine. Thank you for standing by my side and pulling me from those dark corners. Love you.

  50. Heart break is a world epidemic.Through relationships with parents, children, partners and mentors too many of us wander in a jungle of dysfunction searching for love but finding only the reflection of our wounds. You are so right Renee, if we want out of this dysfunction we must take a moment to get the reflection from God of the true possibilities of Love. I found powerful mantra / yantra techniques from Swami Kaleshwar that connected me to that God Love and healed my wounds. So I offer here a blessing wish that all those who read this find their healing as well.