I write this edition of the Ally with a heavy heart...
This edition was intended to explore all the ways in which sandtray therapists were successfully moving back into face-to-face practice amid COVID-19 and quarantine procedures, effective safety protocols being used, and all that jazz...
However, I just can't do that today.
While I am SO excited to see how everyone is moving forward and providing much needed sandtray therapy to their clients, families, etc...have you seen what's going on in our society???
Our families, our fellow therapists, our clients, our friends, our communities are STRUGGLING...and not just because of the pandemic.
This lead me to question the word "ally"...I thought I knew what it meant...and I thought I was one..but am I an ally??
We, as mental health professionals, cannot stay silent about the racism and oppression that are plaguing our society today.
As uncomfortable as it may be, current events are forcing us to look inward, explore our biases, our conditioned, automatic prejudices, and to advocate for OUR people (and yes...all people should be our people).
Here at Southern Sandtray, we are SO fortunate to have a diverse group of practitioners from all over the US, and internationally, and my soul aches when I think about the state of the world and the experiences that I will never begin to fully understand.
I know that there is just so much information to consume right now, and so, so much emotional unrest, that we didn't want to bog you down with facts or techniques...with this Ally, we just wanted to extend our unconditional support...and maybe start a dialogue.
To our clinicians of different races, cultures, and ethnicities, we are BETTER because of you. Our collective of knowledge and expertise could not be what it is without your voices, your experiences, and your willingness to take our hand and lead us where we are uneducated or where our perspective and privilege have not allowed us to go.
We implore you, visit The Sandtray Movement and discuss your experiences throughout this tumultuous time, how these events have impacted your life and practice, how institutions, racism, or biases have directly impacted you or your clients, and how you are working to serve your communities and clients from a place of acceptance and whole-hearted acknowledgement of your clients' experiences.
We want you to know that we see you. We hear you. From unfathomable depths of sadness, we long for the days when we do not have to grieve the loss of life due to the color of one's skin, or try to help clients and loved ones cope with these senseless losses. Today, we truly have no other words....but please know we are with you.
Featured Miniatures- Community Challenge
When serving clients through sandtray therapy, it is imperative to consider how these current events - wrongful deaths, riots, protests, civil unrest, fear, and a simple desire for basic human needs and rights to be upheld - can impact the daily lives of our clients (and ourselves), and to be mindful of how these could impact their work in the tray.
So, please join us in our first Community Challenge and post miniatures that you feel might be used more frequently in the coming weeks and months. These can be minis that you feel have a powerful association, or symbolism, with the current state of the world, or minis that you anticipate your clients (throughout the lifespan) gravitating toward when exploring issues of race, equality, unrest, fear, unity, etc.
As always, we love your feedback and look forward to hearing your thoughts. Head over to The Sandtray Movement and let us know which minis you've selected!
That's all for today, my friends. Love and light to all during these turbulent times. Extend a hand, ask questions, be a voice for those who do not have the ability, status, or platform to advocate for themselves. We see the struggle and we are with you all the way.
Til' next time, keep on keepin' on!
- The Southern Sandtray Team