Partners in Time

–How I Found My Path to Writing

After decades on the couches of several capable therapists, I know that every character we encounter on the stage of our dreams is us. So what does this dream tell me? That I was adjusting to the realities and maturity of midlife? That my concept of love was evolving? That I had to figure out a way to maintain some lasting relationship with my first love no matter what else happened in life?

I really can’t say. What I can say is that, in one of the happiest of endings, despite going our separate ways and living entirely separate lives that extended to different contents, partners, marriages, and crises, Phoebe and I eventually reconnected and somehow cultivated a lifelong bond with one another. We have a friendship that is without question as life-affirming and enriching and invaluable – and certainly more enduring – then the lightning bolt of our high school romance.

We’d have dinners together when I occasionally traveled to California on business, send one another email updates on what was happening in our respective lives and marriages, and catch up periodically by phone.

Just the other day I called her to find out how she was faring in the pandemic lockdown.  So much about us both has changed over the many decades of life, but voices can remain as fixed as fingerprints. When I heard hers on the line, it was precisely as it was 50 years ago when, as a shy and nervous teenager, I walked over to the Seven-Eleven in our neighborhood to call her on the payphone outside.

It was as if the phone line connected two dots on our timeline and the half-century of experiences we’d each had in our lives along the way.

“Hey you,” she answered. She was fine, working from home and telling me about the exercise regimen she’d devised, using a small kitchen ladder to work her thighs. We were both doing ok. We were both alive in the world. And still connected.

It was one of those things that have always made me want to write.


Martin D. Hirsch
Martin D. Hirsch
Martin Hirsch started building his own communications consulting practice in 2017 after a career spanning almost 35 years with one of the world’s leading international healthcare groups. He’s led internal and external corporate communications, brand and reputation management, and crisis and issue management. Working in both the United States and Europe, he has advised multiple CEOs and collaborated with colleagues all over the world. Martin’s strengths include executive consulting, strategic message development, content marketing, storytelling, communications training, public speaking, mentoring talent, and inspiring organizations to advance beyond their limitations.Lately he’s been helping clients by writing keynote speeches for top executives, developing strategies for pitching new business and explaining complex issues, ranging from how to apply new digital health tools in the pharmaceuticals industry to making sense of the rapid and complex changes challenging employees to maintain their equilibrium at major corporations. Martin also works as a faculty adviser at the New York University School of Professional Studies, helping graduate students with their Capstone Papers. His speaking engagements have included presentations at the IABC World Conference, the European Association of Communications Directors Summit, the Corporate Communications International Leaders Forum, the European Commission Communications Directorate and the Rotterdam School of Business Reputation Forum Netherlands. More recently, he was a panelist at the Healthcare Businesswomen's Association conference on expat issues held at Pfizer headquarters in New York. Martin’s writing, including essays, letters and poems, has appeared in newspapers and magazines in the U.S. and Europe. You can read his blog on MUSE-WORTHY, here on BIZCATALYST 360°. He received the American Association of Journalists and Authors 2018 Writing Award for Best Personal Story Blog.

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