Story Told In SEND WORD, BEAR MOTHER
"Send Word, Bear Mother" is based on the true story
of its original author and principal performer Helen Stoltzfus
--- an accomplished actor, writer, teacher, and Co-Artistic
Director of A Traveling Jewish Theatre.
was afflicted with endometriosis, an immune disorder that
may cause infertility, and which affects millions of women
worldwide, 5 million in the U.S. alone.
Frustrated by years of misdiagnosis and mistreatment, she
joined a support group for people with life-threatening illness,
where she discovered a mother bear spirit during a routine
therapeutic exercise in imagination and healing. She began
having profound, involuntary imaginative healing experiences
with that grizzly bear spirit, in fantasy and dream.
Even though she was an intellectual and a skeptic, she was
just desperate enough to surrender to these unsummoned visitations.
Her visualizations strengthened her enough to motivate her
to visit one more specialist, in an effort to get pregnant.
When Helen was finally correctly diagnosed and treated by
that physician, the doctor told her that endometriosis is
linked to environmental toxics - dioxin in particular.
New research is confirming research already done, on this
link between dioxin, PCB and endometriosis. Research is
also confirming the greater vulnerability of women with endometriosis
to developing cancers.
The Bear Mother called her to Alaska for a face-to-face confrontation.
Helen went to Alaska, and found that bears everywhere are
threatened by the same toxics perilous to humans, including
dioxin. She came to understand the larger implications of
her profound connection with the grizzly bear spirit. She
realized the critical danger to both humans and bears of the
disappearance of healthy wilderness, and the spread of industrial
She then returned to the city, got pregnant and gave birth
to a daughter. What came from Helen's "vision quest" was
a deep integration of scientific facts with the power of
imagination, ecological knowledge and physical healing.
That is the story told in "Send Word, Bear Mother" - whose
title is taken from a Native American Sioux healing chant.
Helen Stoltzfus created a one woman performance piece about
her journey, and the movie was adapted from that piece. Helen
plays the role of the Woman in the movie.
Contact the Producer,
Crown Sephira Productions: