Growth where it is hardest

Posted in Uncategorized at 5:46 pm by Administrator

We listened to a great message today at our place of worship.  Our pastor talked about how God meets us where we most need healing.  And yet that is the place where we least want to go.  It is the place that we avoid the most, because it is so painful to do our own personal work.  Yet, it is so freeing for us and for those that we are in relationship with, when we have dealt with out “stuff”.  Granted, it is a journey.  But for me, loving my family as Christ loves me is the best model.  It is when I can get to the place of realizing, that with my kids, I do not have to carry their burden….don’t have to heal them…..it is not my responsibilty.  I merely need to be the conduit to God’s healing and be the Healer’s hands and feet.  I can be with them through their burdens and their pains, but ulimately Christ can/will carry their (and mine) burdens for them.  Wow, how freeing for our bodies, souls, and minds if we could actually embrace that fully!  There have been many times in VERY dark moments that I have prayed for Christ to take my load and He has met me right there!

Matthew 11:28-30, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”


Posted in Uncategorized at 5:30 pm by Administrator

Sigh….one little kiddo and my hubby ended up with Strep this week.  I just hate having to give my kids antiobiotics and fortunately this little one has only been on them twice.  Time to load up on probiotics!


Caregiver stress anyone?

Posted in Uncategorized at 11:07 am by Administrator

I just had an appointment with my bodyworks therapist. I have TMJ and Meneire’s Disease (ear issue) and I hold my stress in my jaw, ear and neck. I have had headache and neck pain for two weeks now. Ok, I am not asking for a pity party, but I share this to show just how much caregiver stress creeps up on you AND affects your body. When I saw wonderful Miss Claire yesterday and she started working on me I just broke down sobbing. I do not have anything going on major right now and we are not in crisis, but there is so much stored secondary PTSD. For me, it has been like peeling away the layers of an onion. And yet, even though I feel like I am pretty “emotionally healthy”, the stress creeps in and stores, torments and wrecks havoc on my body.

Note to self…..breathe, meditate, pray, and pay attention to what my body is telling me. Same note to everyone else! Take care of yourself!

I am convinced that because of all the caregiver stress stored in my body that I now have Meneire’s Disease and hearing loss. PLEASE take care of yourself!

Blessings toward healing,



Posted in Uncategorized at 6:51 pm by Administrator

We ran out of Gaba when we were all sick with the dreaded stomach flu.  So one of our sweet chickadees was withouh her Gaba.  Wow!  What a difference.  Bless her heart she had terrible night terrors and was really having trouble sleeping.  Once she started back on that particular TAAT she started sleeping great again!

I am such a believer in TAAT!


To Hold or Not to Hold

Posted in Uncategorized at 5:52 pm by Administrator

Hey all,

I’ve been contemplating “Holding Time”.  This is a technique I’ve used with my kids in the past.  So I think before a discussion is started, a definition is in order.  The technique of “Holding Time” from Martha G. Welch’s book is a multi-phase technique where there is Confrontation, Rejection, and Resolution.  During Confrontation, the child starts to be held by a caregiver and this can be a scheduled holding or because of dysregulation on the part of the child.  During Rejection, “the child tries to escape your embrace, your gaze, or your words.  The child may spit, kick, writhe, butt, scream, turn purple with rage-or his sad crying may break your heart.” (Welch, p. 51).  During Resolution, “The struggling, fighting, screaming, and avoidance behavior of rejections gives way to an intense closeness-both physical and verbal.”  (Welch, p. 54).

So that’s where I started very early in my parenting of clearly traumatized children.  I would restrictively hold and seek to initiate rage in my children.  Some of the theories behind this, and early attachment therapy, are that children must relive and push through their trauma in order to resolve it.  As well, that control must be wrestled from the child (either figuratively or literally) and that they child must be forced to see that the caregiver is in control.  At least that was my understanding of it and that was my goal and intent of doing holding with my child.

Whew, when I think back now about the screaming, raging, scratching, biting that occured in my house.  Not to mention how dysregulated I felt, even after the “resolution” phase.  After much, much research I realize that initiating rage in my child is truly not what my children need and may actually be doing harm.  I also realize that rage comes all on it’s own from a very deep well of fear and I do not need to initiate it.  As far as my children needing to relive and push through their trauma?  Well, again I feel that through the ebb and flow of therapeutic parenting, my children are working through their trauma.  What our premier researchers in trauma tell us is that trauma is very, very deep seated in the brain (in the state level of memory) and can only be accessed through the body.  What Somatic Experiencing teaches us that the central nervous system can get very overwhelmed when trauma is being processed and that there needs to be a slow going forward and easing back.

What I have learned from my children is that they tell me what they need through their behavior.  A wise friend said, “Behavior is the communication of children.”  I have just had to tune into them and pay attention.

All of our children have issues with control.  And I certainly have mine.  But I finally asked myself the question “Why do I have to wrestle control from my children?”  It is a never-ending battle and only caused to increase their crazy-making behavior.  I realized that the control battles came when my children shifted into their dysregulated-fear state.  When I learned to help my children regulate, and move from fear to love, they no longer felt the primal need to control.  That took some real letting go of control on my part (an ongoing process).

So do I still hold?  I sure do!  I just don’t initiate rage in my children.  As I said before, that comes all on it’s own, and in buckets full!  My holding is not restrictive and if one of my children wants to get out of my arms, then they get out of my arms.  We know that the two primary emotions are fear and love, so retrictively holding my child was bringing out their fear response.  My kids have enough fear without me bringing on more.  As well as the fact that I know that at least one of my children was tied down during her institutionalization.  I don’t care to bring up that trauma anymore than it comes up on it’s own.

I think, and correct me if I am wrong, that Welch has since released an updated version of her book that has revised the technique of holding a child to the point of raging.  Again, correct me if I have misspoken here.

I believe that the ATTACh “White Paper on Coercion” does a great job putting it succinctly:

“The challenge is to activate conditioned emotional reactions (triggers) to access avoided emotional content, but to do so ONLY in a way that does not overwhelm the individual’s coping resources and promotes a sense that the adult is an active source of support and assistance.”


Too Funny!

Posted in Uncategorized at 11:35 am by Administrator

My good laugh for the day….I was IM’ing with a co-worker and she had not received some correspondence from me yet.  I said, “Wow, the mail must be slow because of all the snot.”  Of course I meant, all the snow, although we have quite a bit of the former in my house right now too.

Our goal for today….now that we’ve have two months of good TAAT….we’re going to try to get back to doing NR.  Tiptoeing in with only 5 minutes of creeping and 5 minutes of crawling and 10 of each pattern.  Praying and fortifying myself for the inevitable “processing” of the the “big black bag of ickiness” (what Emily Beard-Johnson calls it).

Blessings to everyone on this rainy day in the Southeast!



How do you regulate?

Posted in Uncategorized at 9:14 am by Administrator

I’d like to take an informal poll about how you regulate and take care of yourself.  Please chime into the comment section below about what you do to take care of yourself and regulate yourself.  We should all take care of ourselves first so that we can then take care of our kids! 

Thanks!  Melissa

From my phone!

Posted in Uncategorized at 9:03 am by Administrator

Too cool! I can now blog from my phone. Technology is so cool. And I love my Droid phone.


80 / 20 Rule

Posted in Uncategorized at 7:13 pm by Administrator

Sometimes we all feel guilt as parents for things we’ve done or haven’t done.  Guilt is such a destructive emotion and can keep us from moving forward, both in our healing and the healing of our children.  I try to keep in mind the 80 / 20 rule where I have now achieved that 80% of the time I am regulated, calm and peaceful both for myself and my children.  Twenty precent of the time I can go between being internally pretty dysregulated and turning into a maniac where I feel the craziness rising and feel myself losing control.  It’s almost like another presence has come over me.  Even in those “twenty” times now though, I can usually remove myself before I inflict any too major damage. 

I have learned through some really good therapy and coaching that guilt and self-incrimination doesn’t do anyone any good.  When I get into that self-incriminating mode (and I am getting better at catching it, before it could go on and on in my brain unchecked), I give myself the affirmation “I am as good as I am, made in God’s image”.  Additionally, when I start to feel guilt for the things I either did or didn’t do in the past, I give myself the affirmation “I did as good as I could in that moment and time.”  It has been truly freeing and I have been able to parent my children from a much “clearer” place.

Blessings toward healing,

Melissa  “Perfect Love Casts Out Fear”

Melissa E. Robinson, MAT, BCI Certified Instructor



Sick….(and tired)

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:49 pm by Administrator

Tired of being sick and tired.  No I mean literally.  We have all been sick for the last two weeks.  Can’t stand stomach viruses and we ALL got it one after the other.  Me of course being the last to fall and getting the sickest.  Poor sweet child saw me getting sick and she got so scared that something would happen to me.  It’s so hard to stay regulated when you’re sick and it took every once of strength I had to “keep it together for her”.  I didn’t do a great job and in fact yesterday I did the in your face screaming.  Ahhh….forgive myself and move on.  Oh yeah…and apologize to my child for losing my brain for  a few minutes.  Praise God for Grace!