What a great day!!
iRun and Rock / United by Trauma event was developed by a group of volunteers that work the front lines of emergency services on the streets and in the hospitals.After learning that Newmarket MPP Frank Klees’ efforts to pass a bill to recognize “First Responders Day” lost momentum when Parliament was prorogued in the fall of 2012, these volunteers decided to take action themselves.This event is completely organized by volunteers with proceeds being dedicated to PTSD research in emergency services, and continued outreach within the first responder community. The proceeds are controlled by a grant application system administered solely by the i Run & Rock Organization, and will be awarded solely for research related to PTSD in first responders.The goal of iRun and Rock / United by Trauma is two-fold. First to publicly recognize the sacrifice all members of our emergency services, first responders, military and their families make when choosing to serve their communities and country. Secondly, to educate these members, their families, and the community that emergency personnel don’t only place themselves in harm’s way physically, but more often emotionally and psychologically. Statistics show the devastating effects of Operational Stress Injuries such as PTSD, depression and anxiety disorders have on these dedicated professionals that have chosen trauma as their trade.Though their uniforms may be different, their cultures are very parallel as they will always be united in trauma. They witness more hurt, sadness, death, and horror in one shift than most people see in an entire lifetime as they unselfishly perform their duties in times of crisis.; however, these scenes, sounds, smells, and images are branded into their minds forever….even for the most hardened veterans.iRun and Rock / United by Trauma wants to initiate a cultural shift in first responders, emergency workers, and their organizations to reduce the stigma surrounding operational stress injuries, and to start teaching the importance of emotional survival with the same enthusiasm in which each profession teaches physical survival.The inaugural iRun and Rock event is graciously sponsored by PACE Savings and Credit Union.It will be held on Saturday June 1st at the Ray Twinney Sports Complex in Newmarket, Ontario.The event will consist of a 1/5/10km run, Full Battle Rattle team event, followed by a concert inside the Ray Twinney Complex.Registration and donations can be completed online on our website at www.irunandrock.caThe concert will showcase various 1st responder bands to be followed by our headlining band Glass Tiger There will also be several “special guest” appearances that you will not want to miss!Event TimelineJune 1/201309:00 Registration11:00 Run starts13:00 Full Rattle Battle Team Event14:00 Concert Starts18:00 End of EventEducation will be delivered throughout the event
Recently the i Run and Rock committee had one of our core meetings. We each took turns giving a detailed debrief on the progress of our sections. As I was reflecting the meeting I was thinking these warriors have adopted my friend Lisa and I into their circle and truly it is an honour. These first responders have experienced the toughest of the toughest traumas and have had to deal with people on their worst day….and this is what they have chosen to do…it is not an easy road but that is why they were drawn to be a first responder because they are Warriors in every meaning of the word to serve and protect. As I have come to know these strong men I also have scene their kind and compassionate side that also makes them so special.
Recently a new warrior has joined i Run and Rock “United by Trauma”, a brampton Fire Fighter….Unbelievable, he drove to Newmarket to help out with a video that we are putting together for the i run and rock event. I stood in the corner off to the side with tears rolling down my face thinking about how so many strangers from all over have united to help each other out. But like an OPP Officer said to me last week “we are always helping everyone else we forget about ourselves”……THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT WARRIORS ARE MADE OF….a special quality to put others first and the daily sacrifices they make to keep us safe!!! These men and women are Guardians and Warriors….I have never be more proud then I am now to join them in this battle to remove the stigma about PTSD…we WILL win….I have no doubt…besides I have been trained by the best Army Officer in the business…Billy Boy!!!!
What is i Run and Rock “UNITED by TRAUMA” ? and Why are we doing this?
I run and rock is a day of appreciation and awareness for those professionals and their families who make daily sacrifices to keep our communities safe…..
The tragic side of being a lifesaver includes the constant exposure to critical and traumatic incidents. Through these incidents may be within their professional abilities, too often this exposure results in operational stress injuries such as depression and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)….there is a way through….
Join US June 1, 2013 Newmarket, Ontario for Run/Rock and Education
A couple weeks back a police officer and I traveled to a conference on trauma and critical incidents. During the conference I was fortunate enough to listen to Col David Grossman speak about trauma in schools,workplaces, the military and first responders circles. For 6 hours I listened to Grossman speak about how first responders are like “sheep dogs” protecting the herd of sheep from the wolf. It’s a pretty simple analogy but very intriguing…..very animated at times but also brilliant.
Today I attended a presentation by the same police officer I traveled with a couple weeks back, he give a presentation about police culture. It was interesting because I didn’t think about it until later how much more I learned about “Sheepdogs” today….it really was a terrific presentation. As I looked around the room the attendees appeared to be memorized by his lecture. I was thinking gosh…I didn’t have to travel all the way to Baltimore to listen about Sheepdogs…..when the leader of the pack is right here in my own backyard ( or field I should say)…LOL!!
Many thanks to all the Sheepdogs that keep our communities safe!!
PS: David Grossman is the author of “On Killing” and several other books!! I also believe the Barrie Sheepdog has a book coming down the road….or so I have heard!
Yup…it was one of those days….”charlie brown” was in my corner, with several glitches here and there and unexpected news, but however my first thought was “thank-god it’s yoga night”!! I hurried home, had a quick dinner and dashed off to the studio!! I was excited to see everyone and although it is not “touchy feely” yoga….I had to give everyone hugs!! There are some yoga classes that rise above the others and this one tonight soared!! The energy in the room was incredible and it really did move me…I was thinking how lucky I am to have so many special people in my life.
A friend of mine emailed me a copy of a Theodore Roosevelt’s speech from 1910 “The man in the arena”….I actually did cry reading it and thinking about the wonderful people that I have crossed paths with on this journey and it is truly an honour to serve these warriors. One thing that I have learned is that these warriors are the greatest teachers and I am the luckiest student!!
Often when I am visiting a new city I like to attend yoga classes and check out different studios. Recently I traveled to the states for a conference. After I attend all my scheduled presentation I had a free day to just tour around. My original intension was to tour a naval base that I have always admired…unfortunately the plan logistically did not work out, so I found myself walking for 4 hours seeing the sights. I was in my solitary mode even through I had traveled with a police officer to the conference, he was busy with presentations etc. As I was walking around I was actually feeling a bit agitated and knew I had to do something…..so what else would any yogi do but go to a yoga class. I had the option to do a practice in my hotel room but I knew that I needed to go to studio and be with others. I wound up at a beautiful old vintage studio similar to mine and I guess I was seeking that comfort and and security. I was the first student to unroll the mat and settle down on it and take a great big breath in…soon after 6 other students had joined me. There was a young man that settled in beside me… I figured he was military. Anyway at one point in class our hands accidently touched and I could feel energy from him. After class we were rolling up our mats and he turned to me put out his hand and said “Hi, my name is Jon”, I replied with a hand shake,..”Hi Jon, my name is Nicole…good to meet you”, and then he took off like a flash. The teacher later come up to me and said Jon never talks to anyone. As I walking I was thinking about the yoga class and Jon and how much I needed them both that day to help me refocus and pull me out of my solitary shell mode….Jon reminded me of the guys that come to my classes….maybe Jon felt that I was missing my students. Funny as I got home a few of the students contacted me and wrote….”I miss yoga” and I said “I know, I do too”…..but I think we also miss each other!!! You don’t always have to be biologically related to be a family!!!