Hello Friends,

Sending everyone warmth & courage for the equinox. I’m starting new support Groups coming soon! What do you need support on? Please find below more about a 2-question survey to share with me. I’ll announce and open the applications next week.

Also, below I share a current client’s trauma story. This story, like all trauma stories, touched my heart deeply. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Origin Forces Groups-

Building your circle of support

Where do you need help most?

These groups will be small on purpose. We need intimacy to heal, a place to mend without judgment.Also, offering groups for professional caregivers.

I appreciate you taking this quick survey so I can be sure to support your needs. I’ll open the applications next week.

Growing up in a brutal Dictatorship

This is the story of a 50-year-old male client who cried in my arms like a baby this month, recognizing a trauma from when he was only six.

In the past three years, I’ve seen more clients whose parents came to the US escaping a dictatorship when they were children in the 70s and 80’s. In my practice as a trauma therapist, clients seem to come in waves. For years, I primarily saw veterans, which is how I focused on trauma immediately after my schooling in Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy. Then a wave of women in their 60s with autoimmune illnesses and fibromyalgia, then suicidal teenagers, and for many years suffering babies and their families. I continue to see diverse clients presenting all kinds of issues. It’s just natural that themes come up.

As of late, I am seeing the need to share impactful lessons from children, now adults, who faced the trauma of dictatorship.

For the sake of this writing, I will call my client “Alan.” He grew up in a brutal dictatorship, and I want you to know before reading this could be triggering for some people.

I had worked with Alan for several years. He came first for help with migraine headaches, then opened up about troubles with his work. He mentioned being bullied as a child but kept a tough exterior with me. If a tear came up, he would shove it down. I never push a client.

Many male clients do not talk much. Yet, over the years, he opened up to me more and more. Finally, recently, his body began unfolding his birth trauma in our sessions. As we touched these deep core patterns within his body, this story as a 6-year-old child surfaced like a ‘flashback’ although contained by a slow pace and safety of my office. The story itself was held in his stomach like solid armor—a defense mechanism to ward off vulnerability for more than 40 years.

At six years of age, Alan told his father he was terrified of his teacher and didn’t want to ever go back to school.

His father assured him lovingly everything was okay and took him to school the next day. Instead of dropping him off as usual, his father went into the classroom to talk with the teacher. He asked the teacher to be gentler, explaining that his son was scared to attend school. He might fear certain things, like swimming, but Alan was a good boy. He just needed a little patience, his father explained.

The teacher was angered and spoke loudly as he convinced the father they needed to break all the boys – so they wouldn’t become ‘little girls.’ They must become ‘good men’ for the country.

The teacher then insisted the father stay to watch Alan be beaten in front of his schoolmates at the edge of the pool and then forced off a high diving board. This was intended to teach Alan to toughen up, to follow instructions, and to know that beatings to come were approved by his father.

As Alan endured the beating on his back, his eyes squinted in pain. The teacher forced him to look across the pool to see his father watching. Alan was sickened to see his father so profoundly uncomfortable. And even more, his teacher was somehow getting pleasure from inflicting pain.

Alan went to squirm away as the teacher began forcing him to the high dive ladder. The teacher caught him by pulling his hair while punching him directly in the stomach. Alan saw his fellow students’ faces go pale as he threw up his breakfast and stepped onto the ladder.


At that time in Alan’s country, military officers went door-to-door to inspect home libraries—and jailed or even murdered those showing any signs of dissent against the dictator’s government.

Over 30,000 people were murdered or “disappeared” in a few years under this brutal dictator when Alan was 6 to 8 years old.

Alan, of course, understood less of this context as a child, but he knew about these knocks on the door… as everyone did. It wasn’t until a decade later that anyone knew the full extent of the brutality when the dictator and several military commanders were imprisoned for crimes against human rights.


When the father watched as the child was brutally beaten in front of his whole class, the teacher was doing the dictator’s work.

The father, who at the time was hearing brutal stories of what happened to dissenters, could not argue. Dissenting in any way was risking your life and your family’s life.

Perhaps it is best, he reasoned, to keep my family safe in this time of immense chaos and threat.

Father and son lost their ability to bond and trust for any family intimacy to occur. Alan didn’t remember his father speaking to him ever again, although they continued to live in the same house.

As a child, Alan felt his father betrayed him, yet he also felt deathly shame and was never sure if it was his own fault. His father no longer told him everything would be okay; he could no longer protect him against his fears.

The only communication Alan could decipher, until his father’s passing when he was a father himself, were indirect assertions that Alan should be a better man, husband, and father.

In Alan’s body, this betrayal held like a frozen shield of dry ice. So cold it burned. The shame became another layer, insulating him from feeling the betrayal. Intimacy invokes shock and terror and keeps him at a distance from his children and wife; in his mind, it’s the only way to protect them. Guilt and shame have kept him constantly trying to do better and never feeling worthy of their love.

And as you can see, this wasn’t an incident of playground bullying but state-sponsored torture. Alan had learned to minimize his feelings, which also meant minimizing even living thru a dictatorship.

I am shaken by warnings from clients like Alan and others from Argentina, Chile, Syria, Iran, Lebanon, and other countries who lived through a dictatorship in their childhoods. Trauma work teaches us that the child is impacted the worst and the easiest to forget. We tend to gloss over a child’s pain because of their resilient smiles.

As Alan’s wife and two children are my clients, I can share that this unspoken story has affected all their lives. Trauma has heavy generational impacts, as well as societal impacts.

As our country faces political turmoil, the children become most affected. Both sides fear that democracy may be crumbling. What if we centered listening skills, believing each other’s experiences as valid, being kind to each other (including those who vote differently or live differently- instead of calling them evil), and learning from history?

The current political environment may not only tear a country apart- but tear apart families. Many people do not speak up, and many can’t. In fact, the eerie silence is a sign of traumatization.

While Alan hasn’t shared his story even with his wife yet, I hope soon he will feel the comfort to do so without minimizing his pain and know that this does make him a real man. A human. One who can be sensitive to the caring needs of others without fear of intimacy.

For me, it is a reminder to speak up when we can, including speaking up on behalf of others. It doesn’t have to be perfect, but I can speak my heart and always learn to listen more. Because our voices added together are stronger. Because we are all human. And because the impact of a dictatorship of any kind will not only impact one of us but all.

What we fail to learn in history is much more likely to repeat, perpetuating intergenerational trauma. What we are silent about will not disappear but become empowered.

Hopi Christmas Trip

So many smiles. I arrived like Santa with a huge van full of gifts.

Over 100 backpacks! Over 200 books! 20 canvas and lots of paints! So many toys and two bicycles!

These few pictures don’t begin to show the joy. Next time we need to squeeze in a photographer.

Thank you for your generosity! Truly every single gift was appreciated. Every dollar was spent to make sure we had requests filled.

I gave several sessions to elders in pain. Thank you also for donating shower chairs and other supplies for the elders.

I missed seeing Qua’ah terribly. I stayed several nights and participated in traditional solstice celebrations with my elder sisters for the first time.

Thank you all again.

UPCOMING: Michael Shea Training in Boulder, CO

I’m excited to share that I’ll be assisting a special Biodynamic workshop on Metabolic Health in September. Michael is hard to find, with most of his teaching in Europe. As most of you know, my foundational training was with Michael Shea, International School of Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy and his workshops are outstanding.

From Michael:

I’m offering a very special biodynamic class in Boulder, Colorado starting September 15. I will be teaching a 10 step biodynamic process to apply to the cardiovascular system in order to help clients who are struggling metabolically. And that means most of our clients are metabolically unhealthy. In order to register for this BCTA-sponsored course, you will need to create a login first.

With gratitude, ready to welcome back the SUN. Happy Equinox all! As always, I’d love to hear from you. Send me an email! With Love, Elizabeth