trauma after medical events

Recently I picked up a couple of Diane Ackerman's books.  First  was: One Hundred Words for Love which is about her encounter with the potential and real devastation of strokes. In this case, it was her husband who had the stroke and what struck me was the obvious psychological trauma; hers and her husbands.  Trauma causing medical events is not a new subject for this site but I couldn't resist  reviewing the book here because it is so touching, real and grounded in solid understanding both psychologically (her own)  and of the literal brain. Ackerman had a deep understanding about  brain function from researching and writing an earlier book: An Alchemy of Mind.  Being a brain function freak, I began my reading with An Alchemy of Mind -- a lyrical treatment of often dry research, her book is rich and rife with metaphor.  For me, as both a poet and a traumatologist,  it was a much needed break into the poetic world. I recommend going along with Diane Ackerman on her exploration. 

Probiotics for depression?

Depression and gut bacteria.  Hmmm. Connection?  Yes.  This and much more in Scientific American Brain: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=the-neuroscience-of-gut...

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Post Traumatic Stress Injury and Unnecessary Suicide

While I was frying potatoes for dinner the other night,  there was a report on the news that a well known Iraqi vet had killed himself.  This was a man who for years had helped so many of his buddies manage symptoms of PTSD while suffering himself. The operative word here is “manage” symptoms. Methods that cure or relieve symptoms of PTSD are not yet highly known and yet are short term and easily applied by a trained lay person. Without this knowledge, what is left is managing symptoms.

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Who We Are

Where the personal story can be safely explored and expressed.         

Ashlar Center for Narrative Arts is an arts driven non-profit peace building organization that serves the Personal Story. We find that peace is a possibility the more we know ourselves and each other through narrative. We work by invitation with individuals and communities to create culturally relevant programs.  The initial program is to give form to the  personal story with and additional program of Self-care to sustain gains made in the storytelling process. The goal is resiliency and capacity building.

We use writing, spoken word, arts processes and music in the belief that all arts extend language in ways especially in creating the coherent personal story.  We start with a very specific approach to aid people in giving  voice and image to the individual story which is then extended, explored and contained in the family story -- immediate and trans-generational  -- always referring back to the collective historical context in which our stories are held. these stories are then posted in multiple platforms in the belief that as we begin to know the personal story, we find the human story that belongs to all of us.

Our goal is to empower people  to work in community in order to transcend the suffering that results from adverse events and conditions. Our goal is to extend understanding and respect cultural practices: we are very interested in how different communities and cultures meet the challenges of being human.  

Our desire is to nurture relationship, encourage learning and teaching through community involvement.  

We provide lay people the means to become Narrative Arts Facilitators where it would best serve them and their communities. 

While our work is highly therapeutic it is not psychotherapy.  Our processes lie closer to anthropology with its mythological underpinnings.

We invite you to invite us.