Forever Changed Not Forever Damaged by Tim | Feb 11, 2019 | Uncategorized | 8 comments How would you explain the phrase forever changed not forever damaged to a colleague? 8 Comments amy m miller on February 11, 2019 at 1:05 pm Our lives are an experience, both pleasant and not so. In the Trauma-sensitive setting these tend to be more of the negative/unpleasant kind. Forever changed not forever damaged,can be summed up in one word…Resiliency – Although we can never erase an experience from our lives, we can learn to take that experience and move forward. Learn from these experiences, how to take steps to protect ourselves from likelihood of experiencing these situations again and finding a way to cope so that these experience become part of who we are, but not what we are. I believe that it’s our role as educators to aid students in finding ways to minimize their exposure and aid in the development of a support system for that student to be able to move towards that “not forever damaged.” Brittany on February 11, 2019 at 1:23 pm Everything that happens to us does have an impact on us and develops (changes) us into who we are today. But just like those events impacts us, our future events will also impact us. Just because we may have gone through something difficult our past doesn’t mean that’s where we need to stay unless we choose to; we do not need to be forever damaged. Once good models, healthy experiences, and healing begin in our lives, we can improve and move past those bad situations. W,e as teachers, have a huge responsibility in providing the positive relationships and experiences for our students have have experiences trauma to let them know that there is a better way to live. Dawn Wolf on February 11, 2019 at 2:12 pm When we think about our students and the issues they are facing, it is important to validate what they are experiencing and the significance of the trauma, but not to blur our own vision on the potential our students have. As educators, we are people in the lives of these students that can help these individuals see there worth and the fact that they are capable, lovable and worthy. We can help build from the strengths they have by acknowledging the successes along the way, no matter how small. When we look at children that may have gone through many not-ok experiences, it is important not to focus on what happened to them, but to acknowledge the difficulties they are facing and teach them healthy ways to cope, meet them where they are and help them rise above these difficult times. Amy Nicely on February 12, 2019 at 2:13 am This is such a powerful and meaningful statement and I feel people don’t approach this way of thinking often enough. Everyone is affected by different experiences throughout their lives, however it is our response to these experiences that determines how we move on and shape ourselves. Everyone has a choice and/or opportunity to not let their traumatic experiences define them in a negative way. It might sometimes take support from someone else (a friend, counselor, colleague, teacher, etc.) to help shift our thought processes to a more “upstairs” brain level of thinking. It might also take years before making the choice to not let a previous experiences weigh us down. This statement makes me think of something personal . I have listened to a family member for multiple years talk with such negativity about her broken relationship with her siblings. Some days she is “stuck” in this mindset and it really affects her ability to move forward. I have realized that I can be that person to help guide her into a more positive outlook and hopefully move on and realize that she isn’t forever damaged. Cathe on February 13, 2019 at 1:55 pm When students have experienced trauma, they shouldn’t feels as though they have a black cloud of doom hanging over them. For some, traumatic events can be devastating and debilitating. For others, traumatic events do not SEEM to affect them as negatively. All students who experience these events need to realize that trauma does not discriminate. It is not reserved for those in poverty stricken areas, but can strike anyone from any background. Regardless of the type of trauma experienced, all students should have educators that provide a safe, secure and caring environment in which to turn to in times of trouble. Every student will be affected by a traumatic event, but students in a supportive environment will overcome the event with less negative, lasting consequences. Unfortunately, traumatic events may be part of one’s path of life. It shapes us as humans and gives us the drive to cope and move forward to the good things in life that are waiting for us. “Forever changed, not forever damaged”… Allison Sampson on February 13, 2019 at 5:17 pm There is so much meaning and power in the phrase “Forever Changed not Forever Damaged”. As individuals we experience things throughout our lives, some which are profoundly beautiful experiences, and some which are devastating. For those who have experienced ongoing trauma, especially as a child, it can seem as if those experiences hold the power to completely damage oneself for the rest of a lifetime. This phrase brings alive the notion that we are impacted by all events in our lives, the good and the bad, and those events shape us as a person, however we are not damaged goods because of the negative events. Those events do not solely define us as a person. This statement also embodies the concept of growth mindset because it conveys the larger belief that we learn from both our “bumps in the road” and our successes, all are part of the learning and lifelong growth path that we are on. We are all “works in progress” our entire life. No matter the circumstances we have faced, we all can continue to learn and grow. Although there may be numerous events that have occurred in a lifetime, which were out of one’s control, personal growth and learning is something that can be continuously worked on! Kathy Kosinski on February 14, 2019 at 1:48 am Forever changed not forever damaged can basically be explained by not allowing an event or trauma in a students life define the student or how we see them. A traumatic event will change a person, but that person eventually has the power and choice to the grow in a positive direction. I would imagine that most students would rather be seem for who they are than the event they experienced. I had an eye opening experience this year when a student shared his frustration with me about telling his teachers about a traumatic experience in his life. His parents had asked me to do this for them. The student said he didn’t want to be known as “that kid”. He also wanted to take ownership and tell his teachers when the time was right for him. I learned from this experience with him. This phrase says what he was trying to express perfectly. Jane on February 14, 2019 at 11:40 pm This statement offers a mindset of hope and perseverance, with a positive spin on the outcome. One can’t deny the fact that an individual will be forever changed. However, the future has many paths one can take. It is important that an individual recognizes the power of their mindset which can lead to future positive experiences. With professional help and guidance, grace and love, one CAN overcome and not be faced with feeling damaged and destroyed as life goes on. Helping to guide and empower kids through these struggles and situations, may provide a model for others that life doesn’t need to feel scarred forever. Making a choice to head down the path that doesn’t allow the event to define who they are and who they may become is empowering!