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Goodbye from Cissy & Introducing the New Community Manager, Natalie Audage

 

Dear Parenting with ACEs Community:

I'm transitioning out of my role as Community Manager of Parenting with ACEs due to health reasons (treatment for recurrent ovarian cancer). However, this community is stronger and larger than ever and will be managed by the kind, warm, and smart @Natalie Audage (PACEs Connection Staff) who I've had the pleasure of working with and now consider a friend. Please welcome her and reach out to her with questions or to contribute to this community.

It feels like the perfect time to make this transition. In addition to my health issues, my daughter is now a young adult. Kai Kai 4And while I'm still parenting, this phase of the parenting journey is quite distinct from the pregnancy, adoption, baby, toddler, and early school years. Kai is a senior in high school and is already older than my mother was when she had her first two kids (me and my older sister). She has been remote learning for over a year and learning to manage time between school, work, and dance which is good practice for college. I had to work full-time before I went to college and was the first in my family to earn a BA. Neither of my parents graduated from high school. My daughter's life is different than mine as mine was different than that of my parents. Different doesn't always mean easier or better though. My daughter has different challenges such as becoming an adult during a pandemic and when violence and discrimination against Asian Americans continues to increase. And, she also has loads of resources and support, as well.

My parenting role is changing. In a few short months, my daughter will be living in the city. It's a time of reflection, celebration, and change.  I want to make the most of all the time we have and the rituals which remain such as prom, dance recitals, graduation, and graduation celebrations.  She has her passions and interests. At the moment, she is interested in studying molecular biology, chemistry, and genetics. And who knows who and what else she will discover in the coming years. For now, this is a prime time for savoring moments, conversations, dreams, and adventures.

Kai seniorMarch

Parenting is a privilege. It has been the hardest and most satisfying work of my entire life. Nothing ever felt more important, daunting, or meaningful. Nothing has challenged me more or made me grow more. What we can face and do to help make the world our children deserve is astounding and never-ending. Parenting requires us to learn and unlearn in equal measure so that we can be with the humans our children are and will become rather than just reflections or projections of our wants, needs, and desires.

It has been wonderful to have this community and to meet others who are parenting with ACEs or care about our varied needs and issues.
Kai Kai

As a community member, I will continue to share posts from my Heal Write Now blog as well as some of the writing I'm doing for the Patient Empowerment Network. I'll also be sharing research about the links between adverse childhood experiences and cancer, in general, and the link between childhood sexual abuse and gynecological cancers. specifically which is deserving of more attention and research.

While some of my current work is cancer-specific, such as this recent piece, entitled, Dying Ain't Dead, other writing is relevant to parents and survivors - such as the Parenting at a Challenging Time program at Mass General Hospital is an exceptional psycho-educational approach to support families, and is free. You can read about it here in this piece entitled, Love is not an ember going cold: Parenting while metastatic.F cancer edit

And, as always, I'll continue to share my personal experiences as a patient, parent, survivor, and advocate as I did in this piece entitled, How Cancer Treatment Treated Me: A Graphic Story.

Currently, I am dependent on the medical system and it can still be the cause of harm as fails the most marginalized people and communities too often. It remains in desperate need of trauma-informed, equitable, and healing justice reforms. While there is SO much work to be done, there are also interesting and innovative projects and programs worth finding, sharing, and creating. Let's keep focusing on those so that they multiply and can be replicated.

ColoI am forever grateful to all the people I've met, worked with, and learned from in my roles as community member, community manager, regional facilitator, and  writer-speaker-advocate. I'm grateful that despite my current health challenges, there are so many warm, caring, vibrant, and active online spaces where we continue to grow connect. This is one of them.

Again, please join me in welcoming Natalie to her new role as Community Manager of Parenting with ACEs.  

Warmly,
Cissy

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Dearest Dana:

You are always so sweet, warm, and loving. You exude connection and healing in how you are. ALWAYS! THANK YOU for being who and how you are and I'm so glad for our connection here many years ago when you reached out when I was just a new member.

How we've grown together over the years discovering so much joy and passion and purpose, professionally and personally!!! I I am so glad we have become friends and that you are such a wonderful mentor in so many areas. You've have helped me when nervous about speaking, encouraged me to do more deep and consistent anti-racism work, and always encourage survivor advocacy. I admire and appreciate you!
Until we are joy-stalking, world-changing, and belly-laughing in person, we have the phone, texts, and Zooms and I'm grateful.

Thank you for all of the love, support, gifts of all kinds, and most especially your friendship and also for all the wonderful people you have introduced me to.

LOVE,
Cis



Cissy, you are an inspiration.

Once connected always connected.

I am sending all my Aroha (love) to you

Wear it like a cloak to know you are never alone

That you are always surrounded by Aroha

I wish you well and we will reconnect again



Adriana Community Manager for Trauma-Responsive NZ

Once connected always connected. I LOVE that, Adriana and appreciate the Aroha! I haven't known you for long but appreciate the connection and conversations via A Better Normal, the Transform Trauma with ACEs Science Film Festival as well as on Linked In! We will stay in touch! Thanks for all of your great work!
Cissy

"childhood sexual abuse and gynecological cancers"

As a survivor of both myself, I will be awaiting any writing you produce on this topic!

We need a heck of a lot more. I know the Clearity Foundation just intereviewed Gabor Mate talking about the link between stress and health and I'll share here when it comes out. I'm hoping the discussion included talk about childhood and adult stress & gyn issues throughout the llife span! Cis

Cissy, thank you for all the excellent work you've done to increase awareness of ACEs through this venue.  I admire and enjoy your insights and candor.  You and Kai will treasure this time together.  And I look forward to reading all that you will write and share moving forward.  Best wishes for good health and joy in this next chapter of your phenomenal journey!

Randi:
Thank you so much for your kind words and warm wishes. I really appreciate it! Cissy

Priceless, and cherished, Cissy:
How loved you are, by so, so many people! Eternally grateful we met through ACEs Connection several years ago and have the blessed opportunity to share, learn, engage, and evolve together.

You are a Light shining onto the world, Cissy White.  A prolific writer, your gifts of expression, with clarity, insight, and wisdom, reaches into the heart of every reader. Your courage and authenticity lifts up the strength and bravery of all those who are touched by your words.

You're kind, caring, empathetic, and have a delightful sense of humor. I miss your laugh, my friend.

Daily, you are in my heart, thoughts, and prayers. I love you very, very much, Cissy, and am ever so grateful for you in my life.

May each day ahead bring an abundance of Love and Light surrounding you, Cissy, and your family. May your joy-stalking journey bring belly-shaking laughter and pure glee. May your divine gifts within create many more writings to inspire and honor others on their healing journeys.

Cissy, thank you for all the excellent work you've done to increase awareness of ACEs through this venue.  I admire and enjoy your insights and candor.  You and Kai will treasure this time together.  And I look forward to reading all that you will write and share moving forward.  Best wishes for good health and joy in this next chapter of your phenomenal journey! 

Jane:

You took an enormous risk to start this important and needed network!! Look how it has grown!! You encouraged me to post (not just comment) as a new member and I’m so grateful. I needed that push but then just on posting!!

And you took a risk on me as well, a sometimes cranky & outspoken person and  sometimes silent and uncertain one (ie not an easy person to manage).

Thank you for letting me lead the Parenting with ACEs community and I know it and the whole org are shifting to a PACEs focus and I am eager  to see the impact on the wider movement. I know Natalie will be amazing in this role!

Finslly, thanks for being SO FLEXIBLE when my hours, energy, & priorities changed! That has been life changing for me and speaks volumes about values! Thank you! And also for all the warmth & tips on managing surgery & treatment!

Now, I’m focusing on family, writing, healing, and fun. Thank you for everything!!

Warmly,

cis

And I’ll miss you Gail but luckily we’ll be in touch. Probably more so!!! And Natalie is great and will be awesome!!! I love making a great new friend on my way out.  And I’ll be as active as a community member as ever. I’m still & always an advocate & writer & that won’t change. Still, I’m so grateful for all I’ve learned on the job, with the team, and the fact that I’m able to shift focus entirely B to health, family, & joy stalking! It’s s privilege not all have & I’m so grateful!! Warmly, cis

Thank you for the farewell and hand-off to Natalie, Cissy. You led the way in Parenting with PACEs (which got its start as Parenting with ACEs), and set some very high standards for us. I so appreciate all you've done. Our network would not be what it is without your nurturing, ideas, enthusiasm and commitment.

I'm so glad you're focusing all your energy on your healing. Right now, you need you, full time, full commitment. And just know that we're always always always there with you.

Cissy I will miss you DESPERATELY as a co-worker AND I am thrilled to welcome Natalie into her new role (the universe does present what we need!). AND Cissy, I hope you continue to share your journey with us. You and your family are ever in my thoughts and blessings and I so appreciate and love your insights, perspectives, observations of the world. Keep your beautiful writing coming!  With so much gratitude and love, Gail

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