Sandtray Therapy Class Translation Stage #4

by Perry Birbrager
(Sandy Springs)

My sketch: Sandtray Therapy Class Translation Stage #4

My sketch: Sandtray Therapy Class Translation Stage #4

In the sand tray therapy class, I was the first student to be the guinea pig as the client in sand tray therapy. After going through the process, it is time to translate my experience.

The following things were in my tray:
A bear
A fireman
A sad clown
A giraffe
a spider
mini mouse
mickey mouse
a soldier
a policeman
big bird
a camel
a tree

The bear in my sand tray represents strength or bravery. I am constantly trying to protect the people around me, and I believe in helping out others.

The fireman, policeman, and soldier represents the people in my life I feel are my support system. My friends and family help support me in life.

The clown represents how I feel about the crazy situation involving my family, and how I feel as though they don't listen to what I say to help them out. It can be really frustrating.

The giraffe represents my flexibility in life, and sometimes I feel as though I am too easy going with people.

Big bird I believe represents my wanting to help people around me, and be there for the people I care about. As Big bird opens his arms to others, I do as well. In my job, my life, and with my friends.

The spider seems to represent fate. I am a strong believer in everything happens for a reason, so I think this fits perfectly. Everything has a fate, a purpose in life, and everyone is faced with things happening for a reason.

Mickey and Minnie are supposed to represent innocence and joy. In this case, there backs are turned towards one another. I feel this represents my joy sometimes being hidden from me and turned away from me due to the stressors I experience in life.

The camel represents bearing the brunt or carrying the load. I feel as though I am responsible for so many people, and sometimes it can weigh me down.

Finally, the tree represents my coping mechanism, how I deal with stress. I find nature peaceful and relaxing, and it is actually where I go at times to think, and really take a look at things in my life, and make sense of it all.

After translating my sandtray in sandtray therapy class, I realize that although i have problems in life, they can be manageable through some hard work and persistence. I am unable to change certain things in life, so it is important to focus on the things I can control for a more happy and satisfying life.

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"Beyond Art Therapy" is the concept from Dr. Stangline that combines all creative fields in therapy. It is not the traditional "art therapy" but goes beyond to include sand tray therapy, play therapy, mindfulness, meditation, color therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, and a vast majority of other therapies.

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