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Grass Roots, Trauma & Foster Care

Gardening gives us the perfect opportunities to teach our kids. There are so many analogies that can be applied!

Today my crew learned about teamwork as we pulled the grass around three sides of the fencing. Many hands make light work - or in this case, since the work was HARD, many hands made it less daunting.

Weeding is NEVER fun, unless you're weird, like me, and it's stress relief! This grass had been growing here for two years. The roots were tough and needed to be loosened with a spade before we could pull it. Rubber gloves worked better than cloth ones for a better grip.

One of my twins made a cool analogy several months ago about gloves - that the glove is like Jesus and He covers our hands, taking all the dirt, weeds, etc. on Himself so that we are clean.

I think that is amazing insight for a 9-year old, who, not 2 1/2 years ago didn't even know Jesus as she and her sister weren't even part of our family yet.

You could go even deeper- the grass is like the trauma that our kids have been through. In some areas it seems to come out easily. They talk about their feelings and nightmares, and seem to be doing great. Laughing, playing, getting along with their (new) siblings..

Then in other areas it's so tough you have to very meticulously take one tough strand of grass at a time and pull hard as close to the root as you can to get it out. But a lot of the root is still left in the ground.

If you know anything about trauma, you know that what you see on the surface is deceptive. Like an iceberg. Like this grass. Only we can force grass out of the ground. We CAN'T force a child to be healed of trauma. We can't love it out of them either. Does that mean there's no hope?


Children's brains and hearts CAN heal from trauma. Contrary to what we were told when we attended training for foster care several years ago. We were told that trauma damages the brain for life. Abuse, neglect, abandonment... alters children's brains and causes them to live in fight, flight or freeze mode most of the time. They exhibit multiple symptoms and are often misdiagnosed with things like ADHD, autism, dyslexia, ODD.. We were told that one of our kids may never read.

She just finished kindergarten - a couple years later than average, but who cares? She's reading.

From what we have learned, and are still discovering, ALL kids can heal from trauma. The brain CAN be strengthened with the right care, learning tools, and therapeutic methods. It takes TEAMWORK to implement, but it can be done!! We are seeing healing with our own eyes.

The grass is still tough, the roots are still there, but with consistent care, and love for the garden of our kids' hearts, they will not be choked out by those roots (trauma). Those negative, damaging roots will thin and the garden plants will be able to receive nourishment. Our children WILL be able to grow into healthy adults.

If you've thought about foster care but are afraid of permanent damage, please don't let that stop you from pursuing the call God put in your heart. It might have been just a seed, and then that seed was choked out by negative thoughts.. Connect with me to learn how we are managing our four (adopted now) withOUT medication.

We are not doing it alone. It takes a team.

Please pray about it. Let God pull those negative roots out and uncover the seed that it may sprout and flourish. There are so many children needing YOUR love and care to save them from what the world is dishing out. Foster children are at high risk for further abuse, including human trafficking.

If you want to know more information about trauma caused by child abuse in relation to foster care, you are welcome to attend a free awareness training on zoom, this Friday, May 26th between 1-2:30pm EASTERN. Presented by Voices for Children Advocacy Center .

Who is interested? Contact me

to register by midnight EST on May 25, 2023.

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Kim Rinks

...It (podcast episode with Fierce Freedom) was so interesting, insightful and inspiring.  It made me think about my own relationship with my kids and if I gave them enough affirmation..

Morgan M.

I believe this book is absolutely necessary and beneficial for parents, and it should be in every family's household.  I fully plan to order more books for our support group as well as freely within our clinic for other therapists to utilize with their young clients.


Genise is an asset to any community she is involved in.  her character is impeccable and that shows through all she is connected with.  Genise ends up positively influencing those around her with her quiet excellence and wisdom..

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