About Edward Blomgren

now in Asheville

We all now inhabit a world I call "the hyper-social performance culture of spectacle."”** As an oddball to that, I seem to be one of the few who prefers not to talk all that much about myself. Perhaps it's because as a former shrink, I’m  used to listening, or as an IFNJ I’m a quiet, introverted person who - those who know me say - actually masquerades as an extravert!  

But I’ve been encouraged by friends and colleagues to share more—to reveal stuff about myself—so here goes. 

I'm a recent transplant from the Adirondack Mountains of New York. My anam cara of 23 years died, which left a huge, huge emptiness, as you can imagine. I don't have words for it, even now. And, at the same time there were 5 or 6 other major changes that had been underway in my life over the previous couple of years. I took stock after M. died. It was time to leave New York, to heal and to expands the other projects I'd been involved with, namely gemology and evolving my nicotine wellness coaching practice to an online presence. 

So now I'm a "retired" shrink, after 26 years in practice. But (you say), 'once a shrink always a shrink!' Well, I disagree!

Who says you can't have a second, or even a third, career?

Not me! That's because I don't subscribe to the "sunk cost fallacy" that says, "Edward, you've spent X years learning and mastering Y, you just can't up and leave and now do Z." I think this is flawed because it weighs too heavily the time behind you - which can't be changed - but largely discounts the time in front of you - which completely malleable! Not to mention the joy and energy this brings to a new chapter in life!

So, to my way of thinking, it's a choice (mine!) - with pro's, con's, and consequences. The "pro" part that made the difference was that gems were always a passion, since as long as I could remember, and coaching for nicotine wellness since about 2003.

With those passions, 'you can't go too wrong when you follow your dream.' So, despite some obvious downsides in starting anew, I made the choice, and the leap . . . and couldn't be happier. Plus I'm serving a whole new range of people, which is exciting, too. Since getting my GG and appraisal diplomas in 2007 and 2008, I've found that a second career is magnificent: it awakens the mind, there's a whole new field to study and master and get excited about. It makes me feel more alive in ways I haven't felt for some time! It's super-"positive" and I'm delighted in meeting so many people who love gems, too!  

So in these "wisdom years," (I'm in my sixth decade) I'm pursuing a second career in my second life-long passion (besides helping people fix their lives) - gems. I've never minded it when friends call me a gem geek (they have, since I was a kid); to me, it’s a compliment! I’ve had a life-long passion for gems and jewelry, and my studies at the prestigious Gemological Institute of America (GIA), in Carlsbad, CA, brought it all to its highest level.

Being a gem aficionado means, to me, being totally obsessed  by their beauty but also knowing something of the technical aspects of what constitutes a gem or jewel worth collecting or possessing. First, from a beauty p.o.v., then from a "store of value" perspective

At the GIA we were taught how to be professional gem detectives, using science and the laboratory. We learned how to gather clues— using the chemistry of chromophores, the study of inclusion morphology and specific gravity, and how to measure aspects of light using refraction, spectroscopy, pleochroism, and dichroscopy. We “solved the case”— identifying the gem and  their  gem treatments and enhancement, and whether the stone is natural or synthetic, and more.

Elsewhere, as a "compulsive learner of new things" (a quote from Gore Vidal) I've been fortunate throughout my life to be able to delve both broadly and deeply into areas that seize me.

Not just being a geek-head, "second-career" gemologist and former shrink, these are long-time passions, as well.

  • I'm a bibliophile, a lover of books. I read and annotate about a book a day, on average about six hours each day - and so far my eyesight hasn't suffered from that!;
  • Published author, with 2 books coming out in mid-2018; one on using energy psychology for nicotine issues, and the other on superfoods for anti-addiction issues. Stay tuned. These directly relate to my other work as a nicotine wellness coach;
  • Flying airplanes. I'm an FAA licensed pilot (SEL) since 1987. I'm certified to fly 3 types of aircraft. I've had some experience flying a friend's helicopter (the R-22), though not licensed yet for rotary wing craft;
  • Skydiver. I hope to complete my A level solo skydiver's license by the end of the summer, 2018.
  • PADI scuba diving instructor since 1987 with over 2000 logged dives; I've dived Hawaii, Grand Cayman (former resident there), Turks and Caicos, Mexico, Jamaica, Belize, and other warm, clear-water places;
  • Svaroopa yoga basic teacher, although I don't teach right now; I just practice yoga myself, daily;
  • I'm plant-based, whole foods, eat one meal a day (OMAD) and, now in my sixth decade, actually feel better than I've ever felt in my life!;
  • 4.0 singles tennis player, with a wicked topspin backhand and a nice kick serve;
  • Caribbean explorer, in search of clear, warm waters to dive. Lived in Grand Cayman, BWI, will shortly be dividing time between US, Belize, and Q. Roo, Mexico;
  • Collector, [genus] ornithoptera, gloss Papilio, and tropical lepidopera. See also the photos below;
  • Graduate Gemologist, Gemological Institute of America (GIA); additional diplomas in diamond grading, colored stone grading, gem identification; CV found here
  • Gem and jewelry appraising certification, MasterValuer InternationalTM;
  • An APPA certified PhD clinical psychologist for 23 years (until 2010);
  • Graduated Rutgers University, Wichita State University, Rutgers, Atwood Institute, Australasian College of Health Sciences, and others;
  • 2500 hour Diplomate in homeobotanical therapy;
  • A certified medical & analytical hypnotherapist;
  • Blah blah blah

My motto is "I'm 'a compulsive learner of new things.'" [inner quote from one of my favorite writers, Gore Vidal]

** the concept of 'spectacle' comes from the writings of journalist, writer, and excellent mind, Chris Hedges.

Aficionado and Collector, [genus] ornithoptera

I'm absolutely crazy about studying and collecting these large butterflies .They're among the most spectacular bugs on our planet. Those pictured here are indigenous to the Oro Province (in the Popondetta Valley, only a few square miles), in Papua New Guinea.

This ornithoptera alexandrae is rare and endangered; it's the largest butterfly on earth - the bright blue-green and yellow male has a wing span of 8 inches or so; the velvety brown female (see below), about 11 inches! 

Ornithoptera alexandrae, female

Wingspan of about 11 inches, the largest butterfly on planet earth. 


One of the 3 types of aircraft I fly. I've flown this particular Cessna Skyhawk (C-172) for almost 20 years; I also fly the Challenger II and PA-28.


Belize is one of my favorite places to scuba dive, especially on the live-aboard, Belize Aggressor. This is in a coral crevice and chimney, at about 100 feet. Clear water: 150' viz, and 87F warm! I plan to expatriate to Belize within the next year.

Cayman Brac, BWI 

This shipwreck, the Keith Tibbetts, a 330' long Russian frigate, is at about 100 feet depth and close to shore, an easy wreck to dive. I lived in Grand Cayman for a few years (after leaving my shrink practice) and taught scuba diving.

On my old porch, writing


Bye now . . .

Getting ready to skim the clouds.


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