Yesterday I had a marvelous day with a group of about 35 wonderful mental health professionals and students in Ypsilante, Michigan. I was hosted by generous and kind faculty of Eastern Michigan University. I learned about the historical significance of “Ipsy,” along with anecdotes pertaining to the Ipsy water tower on post-cards, details of which—obviously because I’m so classy and sophisticated—I will not mention here.
The weather was marginally dreadful. We worried the in-person workshop would be cancelled and replaced with Zoom. Despite the weather, some people drove 90 minutes or more to arrive, which was just one small measure of their commitment to learning and their commitment to serving youth and families in counseling and psychotherapy. Whenever I’m in a room with professionals like the group yesterday, I have renewed hope in the world and in the future. The participants were: Just. Good. People.
As is my practice, I’m posting the ppts from the workshop here:
I’m also posting the “Extra” and more detailed handout here:
And here’s a PG-rated image of the Ypsilante water tower.
Toward the end of the workshop I engaged two participants in an activity that involved shaking imaginary soda pop bottles and opening them. One participant had brought her five-year-old daughter for the day (because of a school closure). As her mother and the woman next to her pretended to shake their imaginary bottles, and I was saying, “Shake, shake, shake,” the five-year-old, who had been incredibly well-behaved for the preceding 8 hours, began giggling in a way that couldn’t be described as representing anything other than pure joy.
In honor of my new five-year-old friend, I encourage you all to find time to giggle this weekend. Even better, find a child to giggle with; it will be time well-spent.
And here’s a photo of me having a giggle with a young person.
2 thoughts on “Tough Kids, Cool Counseling in Ypsilante”
“Shake, shake, shake!” I always love hearing stories about the children that ended up being audience members in your presentations. It’s a good reminder to me of how important it is to be personal, grounded, and “cool”, when “lecturing”. Thanks John.
Thanks Dylan! I love having kids present, even if it means I can’t tell the R-rated version of the profanity story.