Without being pushed Addie started to share little bits about her life. Working with the different animals gave her a chance to show her nurturing side and allow the animals (especially Sigmund - left) to nurture her. One of our newer adopted cats, Smoke is FIV+ and has kidney disease. Her counselor showed her how to give him his daily fluids and this became part of their session routine. Addie empathized with Smoke's illness, and although she didn't have physical health problems, she understood his frustration at needing the uncomfortable daily treatment and at the same time, how it helped him to feel more energetic and alive. 

Those around Addie could start to see more confidence and consistency in Addie's personality and behavior. The depression and withdrawal that she showed, especially at home with her foster parents slowly started to slip away and she wanted to be included more into family routines. Where she had been cutting herself on her arms, she was now finding physical ways to release her pain through walking the family's dog and running when she was extremely frustrated. She had also learned some mindfulness techniques with AATPC's animals that she practiced at home with their dog - her favorite being resting her head on his stomach and listening and feeling him breathe. 

Addie has a long way to go and because of the severe and multiple traumas she experienced early in life, she is continuing to work with her AATPC clinician and animals. She loves to come to therapy and knows the animals and her clinician are real, and genuinely care about her and see the uniqueness and strength inside of her. And they mirror those good parts of her back, so every day, Addie can grow stronger and confident to face the life ahead of her. 

 

Since Addie is in foster care, she receives Medicaid, which AATPC accepts. But Medicaid only pays a small amount of the cost for each of Addie's sessions. We rely on donations from our supporters to help Addie's therapy and to continue to be available to more clients like her.