My 10 Favorite Things About Camp Revolution (Nancy Thomas Camp)

by Brenda on

My family spent the last week in Spokane, WA, with other families who are raising challenging children. It was a blast! These were my 10 favorite things about the week:

 

1. Meeting Nancy Thomas. WOW that lady is amazing!!!! Really!! When we first showed up to camp, she gave me a hug and I was like “seriously!? This famous person is giving me a hug!?” :) We got to hear her speak every day, and let me tell you, her brain is *packed* with tons of good stuff!! I loved learning from her! She has helped some of the country’s most challenging children (she specializing in helping kids who have killed! Wow!). She has lived through this and shared her many wonderful techniques with us!

2. The Family Olympics. Who knew that our family could put together a styrofoam cup pyramid together, only using a string-rubberband contraption and no hands? We realized later that Farm Princess was sneaking over to the cups & setting them upright to help her team. ;) Oops! There were lots of fun games & we were proud to be a team and work together!

3. Brain maps from Dr. Thurber! We planned ahead of time to have qEEG’s done on some of our family members. It is *amazing* what they can see inside your brain! Did you know that they can tell if you are good at music (Farm Boy 1), have an especially heightened sense of hearing (Farm Boy 2), had stress and trauma in your childhood (you store it in your brain!), etc. Dr. Thurber knew nothing about us, and was able to look at my brain map and say “you had a hard time paying attention in school, didn’t you?” Wow!!! The brain scans taught me that Farm Princess, as we guessed, does not have RAD, she is totally bonded to me. She wanted me to hold her during the scan, and when I held her, her brain calmed down and was at peace and stored trauma was released (when I didn’t hold her, she would disassociate & avoid dealing with trauma). WOW! :) Now we’ve got a plan in place of what our family needs to help our brains (traditional neurofeedback, neurological repatterning exercises, pouching (Farm Princess), Heart Math, EMDR, and 3 of our kids need Vision Therapy). It is nice to know what can help them & to know that they don’t all need the same thing! Brains can be healed! :)

4. Meeting other “Trauma Mamas”! Most moms “get” challenging behaviors. It’s neat, though, to meet other moms who know what it’s like to have a kid do the same wrong thing over and over, 50 times per day, and 97 other wrong things just to bug mom (it’s usually targeted at the mom), with a smirk on their face. Most RAD kids can charm the average adult & a lot of people do not believe RAD moms (and that they are being abused, in their homes, by their children, as Nancy Thomas says). These Mamas “get it!” They’ve been there, done that! It’s nice to spend time with people who understand!!!

5. The encouragement from Nancy and all of the staff that we can do this! That we can be silly, fun, in charge, make our kids feel totally safe with us, and that we can handle whatever they throw at us (sometimes literally). That we don’t have to get mad at the maddening behavior. That we can provide an environment where our children can *choose* to heal (they may or may not heal, it really depends on what they choose–we just provide the healthy environment where they can choose it).

6. Chef Mark’s food! We ate gluten free when we were there, and he made us yummy food! He would let us know if there was bread in a baked egg dish & he’d bring 6 plates of scrambled eggs out to our table instead. WOW! Very nice! (And he’s not a chef, usually, he just volunteers at this camp because he saw it help his family a few years back!!).

7. The holding times! Read Martha Welch’s book, Holding Time for more info on this.

8. The grieving ceremony that Nancy and Hannah (our old attachment therapist who is *amazing*!) held for us, to grieve the loss of our foster kids. It was really thoughtful of Nancy & Hannah to put that together for us! I think it really helped our family to heal.

9. The talent show & skit night–all of the families are so talented! It was a blast! We got to pull out or Chicken Farmer skit again (that we used at our church’s Family Campout last summer). It is fun to make people laugh! :)

10. Watching my kids (and husband!) go down the huge water slide (black tarp stuff, down the side of a big hill, with water & soap running down it to make it slick). They LOVED it! We might just build one down a hill in our yard, now!

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