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Recognizing Trauma: At the Dental Office

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In the 15 years I worked in the dental field, I saw a wide range of anxiety behaviors surface for patients.  I’ve had my own experiences of dental anxiety too. The dental office is actually a very common place for anxiety to land.

The dental chair is a vulnerable place to be.  Someone with authority is hovering over you while you lie supine, they are shoving pokey things in your mouth, and you are usually in a small, confined area. More

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Theory Brought to Life

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I’m in awe of a recent experience that brought my classwork alive.

The week before Thanksgiving, a speaker in my class was discussing how children deal with trauma.  She was explaining how the brain works and what needs to happen for them to process trauma.  It was a lot of interesting theory.  Until she said something that really hit home.

“Children need to tell the trauma story over and over and over.  This is how they metabolize, process, and heal from it.” 

One of my most traumatic stories is one that still has an emotional life of its own.  Every time I think about, talk about, or write about this event, the feelings are still incredibly raw.  I thought about how I was never allowed to tell my stories, let alone repeatedly.  In fact, this story remains mostly untold. More

New Chapter

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After a much longer hiatus than planned, I’ve made a commitment to resume blogging.  You have all been so vital to my healing and continued work.  I’ve missed you!  I hope I can give back a fraction of what you give to me.

Last summer I made another commitment that is dramatically changing me. More

Charlie Rose and my Dad

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Thanks to Gayle King, I’m in tears this morning…fresh tears remembering how hard it was to tell someone what Dad had done to me for so many years.  And how similar Charlie Rose is to my Dad.  The power. Oh. My. God. The. Power.  More

It’s going to be beautiful

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Last month I went on a 2500 mile solo camping trip on my motorcycle. I went through 7 states in 6 days.

I was both excited and nervous to go solo, but also determined to face my fears.

It was time for some growth. 

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Turns out I had so much fun, my fears were forgotten, and definitely for naught.  The trip was a confidence booster, and equally important, gave me much needed time for reflection. More

Now I Understand

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Over the years, I’ve heard several women say they had no intention of babysitting if they had grand kids, or even if they already had them.  I was mystified.  I couldn’t imagine feeling that way, and assumed if I had grand kids wild horses couldn’t keep me away.

Then I had grand kids.

While it’s true that wild horses can’t keep me away and I do babysit every chance I get…I think I now understand why some people avoid their grand babies and choose not to babysit.

The first few months after our first grandson was born in January was such a confusing mix of joy and pain.  I couldn’t understand why I felt so much pain and sorrow when I was so excited and happy. More

Birthdays of My Dad and My Father

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Dad’s birthday is today; gone now nearly 5 years, he would be turning 92.

He hated Christmas.  Apparently his birthday was forgotten every year in the midst of Christmas preparations when he was growing up.  The pain of being forgotten never seemed to leave him.  He would not allow us to put up a tree until his birthday had passed, and even then did so grudgingly.

I know now Dad’s Christmas experience is only a tiny window into his life story. More

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