Tales from Parenting in SPACE 2013

May 10th, 2013

IMG_0022by: Caitlin Travers, Counseling Intern with House Calls Counseling

It is my sincere hope that everyone who attended Parenting in SPACE 2013 agrees with me when I say what an incredible weekend that was! While it took me about two full days to recover (I am fortunate in that I didn’t have to jump back into the role of parent, so my hat goes off to all of you that did!), I can easily say that it was well worth it.

As House Calls Counseling’s therapy intern, my involvement at the conference was admittedly much different than it was for parents. Even so, I think there was a shared experience that united everyone together no matter what our role – parent, grandparent, therapist, or intern.

In thinking about what made this experience so unique and special for me personally, I could talk about the amazing presentations that covered everything from the basics of SPACE and attachment, to Behavior Management and Theraplay Techniques. I could also talk about how we all learned to use Improv techniques with kids (anyone else still shouting “Next on Maury!”??), or how we practiced SPACE by engaging in group role plays. I could even talk about how great Saturday night’s live entertainment by Billy Kaplan and Christine Moers was.

But instead of all that good stuff, I would like to take this opportunity to highlight the reason the conference takes place in the first place, and that is all of you parents out there.

As the conference started, I couldn’t help but feel a great sense of pride for all of you parents that made the journey to Zion to participate in Parenting in SPACE 2013. I know that you traveled from near and far, and made significant time and financial sacrifices to be there. The fact that you all care enough about your children, and more importantly enough about yourselves (!!), to attend the conference is truly special and deserves recognition.

Beyond this, I was really blown away by the sense of community that was felt throughout the weekend. I think being part of a community was such a powerful thing – we could both support and feel supported by people going through similar experiences, and the impact can be both positive and long lasting. The need for a community of support when we’re going through something as demanding as being a therapeutic parent is incredibly high, and I’m so happy for you that this SPACE (pun intended, haha!) was provided for you at this conference.

Leaving the weekend, I could only hope that your conference “high” would not fade too quickly, and if it did that you could continue to connect with one another so that you never lose that sense of community that emanated throughout the entire weekend. Now almost a month out, I hope that you are still connecting with each other and with everyone at House Calls Counseling so that you get the support you need and deserve!

I send my sincerest thanks to everyone who came, shared, felt, laughed, and cried at Parenting in SPACE 2013. I hope that your journey in SPACE was as special as mine, and I wish you and your families all the best moving forward!