A Little Bit About Tracy
I’m Tracy, welcome to my “about page.” So, who am I and what is play therapy for kids entail, you may ask? Well, let me tell you a little bit about both.
A little bit about me.
I’ve been all over the world but was born in Canada (eh?!). I’ve been working with kids in some capacity for the last 20 years. In a former life I was a kindergarten teacher, nanny, ABA behavior therapist, children’s crisis counselor, and in the last five years I have been working in private practice. I’m a Registered Play Therapist and a Certified Sand Tray therapist with a Masters degree in mental health counseling.
Also, full disclosure, I’ve been entrusted with the care of a small human/future adult as well. It’s been the most rewarding, important, scary, and confounding thing I’ve done in my life. Although we all have unique circumstances, I get some of what it can be like to parent these days. It’s HARD!
I’m a play therapist, which in a nutshell means I’m trained to use a child’s play instead of their words to work through their big feelings and presenting issues. Think of it this way, a wise man once said, “play is the language and the toys are their words.” A child’s brain isn’t developed enough yet to sit down and verbally process their big feelings and thoughts the same way an adult can; some adults don’t have that ability! Even if they did, that can be some pretty vulnerable stuff to lay all out on the table to a stranger. Am I right? So, my job is to interpret their play, help them process, gain insight, facilitate growth, creativity, courage, capability, and collaboration. Each child and family is different, so I don’t use a cookie cutter approach. Although I have magic wands in the playroom, there are no magic wands to “fix” your child. I am a huge believer in treating children with respect: their session is their time and we, as the trusted adults, are there to support them through their process. As a team, WE will work together towards healing and understanding together. This means collaborative parent sessions on a regular basis mixed in with your child’s individual sessions. At the end of the day, sure I might have a degree, but you are the expert in your child.
For the older kids and teens, my approach is more talk based. I meet them where they are. Remember that magic wand thing I mentioned earlier? That applies for teenagers too. Developing our therapeutic relationship is of the utmost importance.
For kiddos and teens, this can take at least 5-6 sessions of trust building before we get into the “meat” of why they are here to see me. Sometimes other kids take much longer, so be patient with the process. I use a prescriptive approach depending on each individual’s needs. I draw upon cognitive behavioral, art based techniques, sandtray, motivational, and client centered approaches.
If all of this sounds like a great fit to you, or if you have further questions, feel free to give me a call at 970-460-8024 or set up a FREE phone consultation under the services tab. I look forward to support you, your child, and your family!