Social justice has been at the heart of my pursuits, professional and personal, since my time in undergrad at Beloit. Completing a service term with AmeriCorps after graduation allowed me to connect with and understand the power of community. It also drove my decision to become a school psychologist, as I saw the foundation of educational disaparities beginning before children ever entered school. Four years in, I've learned a lot about curriculum, assessments, special education. The more important part is what I've learned about trauma - and that, despite our best efforts, it's insidiuous, and lingering, and it matters. I've also learned that we can address it.
My personal experiences and reading journey to date have allowed me to begin to explore the space of yoga as a means to address the ongoing somatic and emotional effects of trauma. I feel especially empassioned about bringing this gift to spaces in which access is traditionally limited and knowledge or comfort may not exist. Though I can’t predict how this all may turn out, I’m envisioning, in a small way, helping to bring a new (or renewed) sense of control over one’s body, energy, and peace. To teach the connection between the mind and the body, between thought and action, between intention and how we shape our reality. I think yoga can be an incredibly powerful tool for our young people who grow up in communities where the energy required for survival leaves none for mental, emotional, and physical wellness. I am especially interested in how I can bring this knowledge and experience to women and communities of color, in a way that is beneficial, respectful, and empowering. As I continue my work as a school psychologist, I'm hopeful that this venture will allow me a visceral way to continue to connect and advocate for social justice in our little corner of the world.
If any of you feel able and compelled to help support this dream of mine, I would like to work out a way to thank you via a class taught to your classroom, coworkers, church community, etc. The teacher training program I've chosen (http://somayogainstitute.com/index.html)
is taught with a therapeutic context in mind, which I envision will provide me with a solid foundation to begin exploring how I can bring yoga to others in this modality. Training is in July. The money raised will go strictly toward teacher tuition/books. I intend to pay for the travel, housing, and certification expenses. As life goes, the full cost is unfortunately a bit prohibitive at this time. I truly believe that what is meant to be will be, and that when we speak our dreams out to the world, it responds in incredible ways. I've already been so encouraged by the people with whom I've shared the growing intensity of this dream of mine, and am so looking forward to the steps to come.
The Body Keeps the Score - Bessel van der Kolk, MD
Overcoming Trauma through Yoga - David Emerson and Elizabeth Hopper, PhD
Trauma-Sensitive Yoga in Therapy - David Emerson
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