Community Building

‘I am not just my trauma’

Screen Shot 2018-06-07 at 8.59.37 PMI’ve read this article many times now.  It continues to be shared with me from folks I respect and admire. And each time I read it I’m more convinced that it is up to those of us engaged in this “trauma-informed” movement to come together around our language.

It’s always sat with me as too deficit-based but the alternatives never seemed entirely right either.  For those on this healing journey with me, read this (again if you’ve already done so) and let’s start a conversation.

I’m actually leading two trainings today and plan to begin incorporating some of the “healing centered engagement” language in both.

Community Building

Asking Myself What Is Not Visible

kat-j-525336-unsplashTrauma training has had a significant impact on the narrative playing in my head when I encounter behavior that seems out of line, annoying, or inappropriate.

What I see is a child throwing a tantrum in the grocery store.  What I don’t see could be the hunger the child is experiencing.

What I see is a child playing outside with a diaper that needed changing hours ago.  What I don’t see is the tough spending choices their parent/guardian is making between rent, food, and diaper needs.

What I see is a student who is not engaged in their learning.  What I don’t see might be the worry the youngster is feeling at the possibility of a returning to an empty home, their parent taken by U.S. Immigration Services.

What I see is a person who is angry without obvious explanation.  What I don’t see may be the abuse they suffer at the hands of someone whom they should be able to trust.

What I see is a co-worker not putting in the effort I expect.  What I don’t see may be a partner who is unemployed and an inability to pay the mortgage.

What I see is a group of young black men on a front porch in the middle of the day.  What I don’t see could be the way their learning style and behavior set them apart from the “norm” and caused enough time out of school to compromise their ability to succeed.

What do you see?  Please consider what you might not be seeing as well.

Community Building, Trauma Research

Introducing ‘The Well,’ a place for community

Welcome to “The Well”, a new resource for people committed to building a stronger, more resilient and a compassionate community for our children and ourselves.

As we write this, we are watching with sadness the news unfolding in Parkland, Florida, where a 19-year- old man with a troubled past stalked the halls of his former high school with a legally purchased, AR-15 semiautomatic rifle, killing 17 people.

Even as we try to wrap our brains around what should be unimaginable, we are forced to face the normality of this tragedy.

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