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SusanDolphinDelaney

Healing and Empowerment for Women

Category Archives: Mental Health

Fifty three years ago, I was a senior at Bladensburg Senior High School in Maryland. I was a rising star in the science world and in the science fair world. I was Photography Editor of the yearbook.

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I had been a scientist, in my soul, since childhood. I came from a family of photographers and had worked in the darkroom since I was 7. My dad was the Medical Photographer at George Washington University Medical School in DC and I had gone to work with him often, on Saturdays, all through grade school. I had hung out with medical scientists when I was there.

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My success and my gender were apparently too much for my high school Physics teacher and the Photography teacher. Sadly, their classrooms were across the hall from one another and  they were best buddies. This allowed them to gang up on me more.

I was the only girl in my “Double Physics” class. Back in the day (1964-65) we didn’t have AP classes. Serious science students could sign up for classes like Double Chemistry, a two hour class which I had taken the year before. Now I was in Double Physics, another two hour class, this one with a total of 12 students.

The Physics teacher would have been fired the same day if I’d had an iPhone and had recorded his daily, sexist, misogynist remarks to me. “There is only one thing a woman can do that a man cannot do, and she needs a man to help her do it,” he said one day.

By some miracle of grace, I paid him little attention in these attacks. I was there to continue my science education by learning Physics.

Only two of us in the class took the Science Talent Search exam. Only one of us was named to the Honors Group. That would be me.

Only one of us would earn a slot in the International Science and Engineering Fair. That would be me.

The Photography teacher was the yearbook advisor I had to work with. And of course, I had to use his darkroom, right across from the Physics classroom. I had worked in darkrooms since I was seven. I really had no questions for the Photography teacher, I knew what I was doing and did it quickly and efficiently.

The Photography teacher was actively hostile to me, every day, for no reason. The two teachers were “best buds.” Neither touched me. They just tried to shame and discourage me.

It didn’t work. I was respectful to both of the teachers, and held myself aloof from their cruelty.

I was able to exact revenge on the Physics teacher twice.

The Maryland Academy of Sciences chose to honor me at a special dinner in Baltimore, 38 miles away. Your science teacher was to accompany you. I told my Physics teacher of this requirement. He suggested that my old Chemistry teacher do it instead. I replied that they wanted him to be there. I could have asked my Chemistry teacher, who had moved to another school. He would have been glad to support me, but I wanted my Physics teacher to have to drive me there and back, and to sit beside me and watch me be honored.

The second “revenge” came twelve years later. I knew that the Physics teacher had always wanted to go to medical school and had not been able to get in.

When I graduated medical school, I had already earned a MS in Human Physiology, I learned that my Physics teacher had retired. I called the office at the Prince George’s County School Board and spoke to the woman who sent out the checks to retired teachers. “Oh,” I said, “he will be so thrilled for me. If I mail you a copy of my graduation announcement, would you mail it to him for me.” She readily agreed. I sent it.

Of course, I never heard from him.

I am writing this today because I read an article in the Washington Post about a math teacher who tried to tear down female students. I am here to say that teachers like that have tried to tear us down for a very long time.

It is my understanding that both of my former teachers are deceased. I leave their names off out of respect for their families. I am sure that both men did good in their lives, although not to me.

An organization, Stop Sexual Assault in Schools, created the hashtag that leads this post.

Here is the link to today’s WP article:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/in-a-prestigious-high-school-math-and-science-program-alumni-say-metoo/2018/03/01/b17f68ac-f1b6-11e7-b390-a36dc3fa2842_story.html?utm_term=.8b9e7ac9a8d3&wpisrc=nl_mustreads&wpmm=1

*The portrait of me was taken by my brother, Stephen C. Delaney, who was the photographer for the EPA for its first 25 years. The second photo was taken by my dad. I am standing with my uncle and grandfather.

Susan Delphine Delaney MD, MS

Doctor Delaney was honored by the Prince George’s County Regional Science Fair; The Westinghouse Science Talent Search; the International Science and Engineering Fair; The Washington Academy of Sciences: The Maryland Academy of Sciences. She is a 1969 Graduate of the University of Maryland in Chemistry, in an American Chemical Society accredited program. She worked as a Chemist, wrote operating systems for large scientific computers and did hospital data processing. She earned a MS in Human Physiology in 1974 from the University of Wisconsin. She earned her MD from the University of Wisconsin in 1977. She is a 1981 graduate of the Menninger School of Psychiatry. She was a Staff Psychiatrist at the Menninger Hospital and taught in the Menninger School of Psychiatry. She is the author of two books. The first won a Gold Medal for Health Communication from the American Association of Medical Writers. She is the author of two nationally distributed columns and many magazine articles. She has given presentations at the UTSW Medical School and at several Dallas area colleges.

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In 1969, when working as an Adhesives Chemist, a male co-worker was resentful that as a degreed chemist, I made more money than he.

One day I found a huge p*nis made of black mastic lying in the crease of my lab notebook. Mastic is a black putty-like adhesive, still used to fix down linoleum floor tiles.

I pulled off the tip of the p*nis and fashioned a tiny p*nis from it and laid the tiny one in the crease of his lab notebook.

I laid the mutilated one beside his notebook.

That was the end of that.

He never bullied me again.

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Our individual snowflakes, our pushbacks, have become an AVALANCHE of justice for women.

Good on us!

 

(Note: the painting at the top of this page is one of mine.)

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I turn seventy tomorrow.

I am writing to tell you that survivors of clergy sex abuse serve a life sentence.

Clergy sex abuse, with its physical abuse; sexual abuse; emotional abuse and spiritual abuse causes a SHATTERING of the survivor’s being.

Sometimes clergy are given minimal sentences for raping children. Sometimes as little as one year. But we survivors serve a life sentence.

Let me introduce you to my five year old self.

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This precious five year old was sodomized on a weekly basis during fishing season by my father’s priest.

My body will never be the same.

My emotions were savaged not only by the abuse, but by my parents, groomed by the priest, who turned a blind eye to what was happening.

I lost my faith, but regained it, bit by bit. My faith is now robust, but scarred.

I lead a full, productive life. I have left this world a better place.

I like to think that my book has been a snowflake in creating the wonderful avalanches of justice that are happening for children, women and men today.

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I published my book on the Feast of the Holy Innocents, December 28. I dedicated it to all of my brothers and sisters in this world who survived clergy sex abuse. And to those who, sadly, did not survive. So many suicides because of this horrible crime!

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Every month, Erin Praise-Hintz of Earrings Everyday issues the challenge to make a pair of earrings based on a prompt.

This month’s prompt was a photo of dew covered damselflies:

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The prompt led me to create the earrings above. And helped me solve TWO design challenges that had bedeviled me.

I had two “failed” necklaces on my workbench. Both of them had laid there for a LONG time.

One was made with the large frosty/icy aqua lampwork beads you see in the photo above. They had posed a huge design conundrum because they TURN LAVENDER in natural light (I photographed them in florescent light, above.) I had made and remade necklaces with them, but none was “right”.

I also had some Aqua Aura beads on my bench that had been incorporated into several failed necklaces. Aqua Aura is clear crystal quartz that has been heat treated with 24K gold vapor. The treatment causes it to turn aqua and to acquire an iridescent lavender/golden finish. You can see a small bead of Aqua Aura in each of the earrings above.

Erin’s challenge got me to looking at both sets of beads. Finally the thunderclap came: incorporate them into the same jewelry set, incorporating the lavender/aqua lampwork beads; the Aqua Aura (I had one big bead of it and many tiny round ones; light Azore AB Swarovski crystals; lots of tiny Aquamarine beads (rounds and cubes); a few shades of amethyst Swarovski crystals, and two sizes of Amethyst rounds.

Success!

Here is the complete set in florescent light, which is the lighting at my office:

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It looks AMAZING at the office!

And here it is if I step outside:

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OK, but not spectacular.

So, thanks to Erin’s challenge, I have a wonderful statement necklace, matching earrings and a bracelet for each arm.

Two sets of beads that had driven me crazy trying to find a way to use them have come together in a lovely, useful jewelry set. Thanks, Erin!

If you liked my design, head over to my Etsy shop, to the second page, where you will find several items that COULD have been inspired by Erin’s post.

* Newborn Unicorn Twins – a pair of earring disks made with my Mystic Roman Glass Opals

* Northern Lights; Lighting Up the Tundra and Aurora Australis, three pairs of earring disks inspired by the Northern and Southern Lights.

* Underwater at Puerta Vallarta, gorgeous watery translucent and opal clay goddess earrings with matching gemstone adventurine rondelles.

http://www.etsy.com/shop/SusanDolphinDelaney?page=2

Here is the url of the challenge where you can see what the other participants made:

http://www.earrings-everyday.blogspot.com/2015/03/were-all-ears-march-inspiration.html

 

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Looking for the ABS Challenge? It is down three clicks! It was a month will a full heart!

This month’s challenge from Art Jewelry Elements was open to all!

http://www.artjewelryelements.blogspot.com

The editors challenged us to use components created by the editors, rescued from our stashes of beads, and to make something from them.

I found SIX items in my stash from the Art Jewelry Elements editors.

I set to work.

The first earrings I created used two of Sue Kennedy’s Shimmer Beads and paired with with snowflake charms from MayaHoney. You can find Sue’s Shimmer Beads here:

http://www.etsy.com/listing/212998134/lampwork-beads-suebeads-shimmer-beads?ref=shop_home_feat_2

I bought these beads during one of Sue’s wonderful sales.

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Jen Cameron of AJE runs an amazing Art Charm Exchange and Charity Auction each fall. Jen’s shop is http://www.glassaddictions.com.

I didn’t have any of Jen’s work but I had these charms from Diana Ptaszynski BECAUSE of Jen’s Art Charm Exchange.

I swapped one of my handmade charms for these leaf charms with one of our other Art Charm Exchange artists.

You can find Diana’s stoneware leaf charms here:

http://www.etsy.com/listing/211914028/stoneware-leaf-charm-pair?ref=shop_home_active_3&ga_search_query=leaf%2Bcharm

Creating the many colors of yellow and tan polymer opal clay that went into the disks in these earrings brought me to a breakthrough, using golden yellow opal clay, that led to my Giverny series of polymer clay opal disks, which you can see in my shop, so I am so glad that I swapped for these.

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It is not often that I find myself almost weeping for joy when I open a parcel from an Etsy seller, but when I opened the package from Rebekah Payne with these Queen Ann’s Lace drops, I wanted to cry. They are absolutely gorgeous. I paired them with some white baroque freshwater pearls. You can find Rebekah’s drops/pendants at:

http://www.etsy.com/listing/207166341/new-color-gossamer-white-queen-annes?ref=sr_gallery_8&ga_search_query=treewingsstudio&ga_ref=auto1&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery

You will not be surprised to learn that I had three items in my stash from Kristi Bowman.

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Kristi does wonderful things with copper clay. I paired her disks with my lush female figures made up in my Azurite with Native Copper polymer clay. Kristi’s shop, KristiBowmanDesign, does not have these exact disks as I write today but you can find many other wonderful copper disks there today:

http://www.etsy.com/shop/KristiBowmanDesign

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I’d been walking around Kristi’s Lotus Root Pods for some time. This challenge enabled me to make this pair of earrings. I added goldstone beads and copper beads to copper headpins to make the dangles.

This item is not available on Kristi’s shop today but you can use the url above to find something wonderful.

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Finally, I had a single heart from Kristi that I had “won” in Jen’s Art Charm Exchange in 2013. I created a pair of asymmetric earrings. I paired Kristi’s copper heart with one of the disks from my shop, Azurite in Native Copper. I topped it with a Swarovski AB topaz bead. I made the other earring with some chain maille I’d “won” in the Jen’s 2013 Art Charm Exchange. Toltec Jewels made the chain maille. I added topaz crystals to match the other earring.

You can find Kristi’s hearts in her shop today:

http://www.etsy.com/listing/176481321/handmade-copper-stained-glass-heart?ref=shop_home_active_7

So, one challenge, six pairs of earrings and the inspiration for my Giverny Opal Clay!

Here is the Waterlily Garden Opal Clay that arose when I worked with Diana’s charm:

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All of these earrings are available in my shop

http://www.susandolphindelaney.etsy.com

Thanks to the AJE team for this wonderful challenge.

visit http://www.artjewelryelements.blogspot.com to see the other participants.

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I wept when I saw this photo on Facebook today. I weep as I write this. Science Fair was my salvation!

I was a teen when my family hit really hard times.

Fortunately, I was a kid who was a native of Washington DC. Four generations of my family had nourished our minds and souls at the Smithsonian Museums.

When I was a girl, Mother would pack me a sack lunch and pin two streetcar tokens to my blouse and off I would go to spend the day at the museums on the Washington Mall.

Natural History was my favorite one, especially the Hall of Minerals. I loved crystals.

Later, my science fair project would be about crystals. I grew crystals in a strong electrostatic field and observed the changes in their behavior under the influence of that field.

Even as my family was collapsing around me, I continued with my project. I did well in the school fairs and the regional fair. When I was a senior in high school, I won first Grand Prize in the Regional Science Fair and won a trip to the International Science and Engineering Fair in St. Louis.

As a result, I won enough scholarships that I could attend college. I completed my BS in Chemistry in 3 1/2 years.

Later, I would earn an MS in Human Physiology.

And later, my MD.

All because of Science Fair.

When my daughter started first grade I started volunteering to judge school, district and regional science fairs. I did so for 16 years. I judged twice at International.

My daughter was a science fair kid, too.

I coached her science fair classes starting when she was in 9th grade.

I taught the science fair kids to watch three movies:

* October Sky, because science fair CAN be your ticket “out”.

* Space Monkeys, because sometimes the judges give it to the monkeys.

* Cool Runnings, because, “If you are not OK before you win the gold medal, you won’t be OK after you win it.”

I am happy to say that science fair taught my wonderful daughter poise and grace under fire from science fair judges. She’s an alumna of the International Science and Engineering fair, too. She’s a PA and holds her own BS and MS.

So, you see, I wept when I saw the photo at the top of this blog. Because of science fair, I have three degrees. Because of science fair I’ve written two books, three columns for national magazines, many articles for national magazines and now this blog.

Thank you, Science Fair!

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Are you feeling at the end of your rope?

My dear, late friend Fr. Al Durrance used to say this: God can always be found at the end of your rope.

Al had been in the healing ministry for 56 years when he passed last July. He brought me into that ministry in 1994 and I have been privileged to see many miracles because he “got” me that day at the National meeting in Ft. Worth. He waived the “entrance” requirements for the Oder of St. Luke the Physician and inducted me on the spot. I think he knew that I would do all of the required things. I did. In fact, I have taught the course on the healing miracles of Jesus eight times already.

I made these earrings from translucent polymer clay that I kissed gently with silver/granite clay and bronze clay. Only the tiniest bit of each.

I made the silicone molds from a statue of St. Francis of Assisi. The mold for the back is just folds of his habit. See below.

I painted the recesses of the clay ovals with a silver paint and the high points with a gleaming micaceous paint.

They are gorgeous. Below you can see the “back” of one on the left.

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They are available in my Etsy shop as a special order. I can do them with hints of silver, pale gold, gold, copper or bronze in the clay. I can put in gray mica or gleaming colorless mica. Or both. I can paint the recesses with silver, gold, copper or bronze. I can paint the high spots with a super thin layer of mica in red, orange, blue, green or violet. I can use wires and lever backs to match the metallic color you have chosen to tint the clay body.

http://www.etsy.com/listing/219594218/at-the-end-of-your-rope-translucent?ref=shop_home_active_1

I’d be glad to make a pair for you. I can have them ready to ship within three days.

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