Reflecting and Moving Forward

As I reflect over the past year, I realize that a lot has happened.  I would like to share about my therapeutic toys, which I launched in the fall of 2011.

The mending heart and the customized plush toys were created to aid in communication for children who have experienced trauma.  Examples which easily come to mind are sexual or physical abuse and surviving a natural disaster when loved ones perish.  In 2012, we saw so many storms destroying lives and senseless acts of violence in theaters and schools.  I received amazing feedback from therapists like, Tina Nunnellee, PhD, LPC CART who states, “I use it (the toy robot) with children, teens, and adults, male and female. I was not surprised about how well it worked with the children and teens. I was surprised at the response from the adults. I have witnessed adults move through issues in a few sessions instead of years of sessions. Adults appear to connect to this little robot in a way that assists them in processing a lifetime of hurts in remarkably short time frames. I work with some teens who could be termed ‘resistant.’ With the robot they open up and pour their hearts out, releasing and working through shame, fear and self doubt.”  As my research progressed, I found that the toys also help children experiencing “normal” parts of living, like bullying; dyslexia; or caring for a disabled parent.  My task is to get the toys into the hands of those who need them and this year that will be my focus.

The feedback I received from my research in 2012 clearly shows I need to bring my toys to market and expand my audience beyond the traditional therapist.  As such, look for changes in my website and approach in 2013.  My goal for 2013 is to touch the hearts and spirits of a millions of children and adults so that they can release their pain while enjoying the simple act of play with a toy.    We all deserve to play, to feel loved, and to let go of the pain that holds us back.

Elaine Carroll

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