This work is messy & I make mistakes…


A couple of weeks ago, I posted a blog regarding the shootings in Uvalde, TX. So many of you responded and expressed shared sadness and heartbreak. I know we all do. And, a couple of you reached out and expressed disappointment that I had not addressed other shootings that had proceeded this one, including the mass shooting in Buffalo, NY that was racially motivated. I’ve truly sat with this feedback over the past couple of weeks. I offered thoughtful apologies and expressed gratitude to those of you who reached out. This work around responding to trauma is messy and I make mistakes daily, I’m sure. In an effort to support providers after there had been weeks of deadly shootings, I tried to get as much information and support out as possible. But, what we DON’T say matters too. Of course, I was aghast by the shootings that had proceeded and have continued since the massacre of 19 children. But what I didn’t say was that my response to the shootings of children and the extreme exhaustion and overwhelm I felt was a direct result of the hopeless feeling and compounding stressors from the other horrific acts of violence that had proceeded this one. 

We can always do better. I believe intention matters. My intention, my purpose is to help healthcare workers understand and respond to trauma. To mitigate stressors and build resilience. To have actionable tools for the children, families, and patients they see so they feel more confident and competent in their practices. And because there are times when it feels like trauma in our world is unfolding faster than we can respond – there will be mistakes made and lessons that need to be learned. If I’m doing this work – I bravely step into the world and open myself up for constructive criticism for when I don’t do it right. And that matters to me. 

I don’t believe that we grow unless we’re willing to fail forward. I’m thankful every day that I have a platform to reach others and create meaning, especially during difficult times. And, I appreciate that I’ve created relationships with so many of you that you feel you can reach out and say, “Hey Amy, I’m not sure you got that right” or “I think you missed something and that hurt me.” 

I don’t always make my views on the work of equity known as explicitly as I could. As a white, educated, cis-gendered woman, I believe that it’s my job to work and gain trust. And, it’s my job to be an ally to those who recognize my work and efforts. I also strive to be an ally and gain the trust of those who may not see me that way yet. I will continue to strive to do so. And I will try to make my work and dedication to these efforts more explicit.

In the meantime, if you’re interested, here’s some of the work that I do and I’m committed to continuing:

  • Offering scholarships for trainings I provide for those who may not be able to afford an experience otherwise, especially medical residents.
  • Find subject matter experts to partner with and facilitate trainings with me – especially on issues related to diversity and equity.
  • Elevate voices of those with lived experiences any time that I facilitate parent trainings or professional consultation. I truly believe that communities have inherent abilities to heal when appropriate funding and resources are provided.
  • Ensure that when organizations request resources that voices of BIPOC & other marginalized groups are included as expert authors and contributors.
  • Contribute financially to organizations that provide opportunities for youth and families who’ve experienced trauma – historically, intergenerationally and systemically. The most recent example was contributions from my business were:
  1. The Loveland Foundation – to provide therapy to black girls who would not otherwise receive services
  2. The Boys and Girls Club of Lewis County – to ensure after school programs are available for boys and girls in one of the most impoverished counties in Washington. 

Please keep asking questions. As I said, we can all do better to make our intentions and practices clear. Actions matter. Allyship is earned. 

Lastly, a quick reminder to STAY TUNED for the launch of my Podcast on August 3, 2022. Updates and an invite to join me for the launch party forthcoming! 

With compassion for all you do,

Dr. Amy

Licensed Psychologist