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The Resiliency Center: A Healing Arts Collaborative in Ambler, PA
What to do When Adversity Strikes: Families in Transition
By Jeffrey Katowitz, LMFT

It is inevitable for all of us. At some juncture we most likely will be faced with a sudden shift in our worlds.
The loss of a loved one, loss of a home or wealth, fired from a job, a traumatic event or sudden accident. What we do know for certain is that we are vulnerable at any juncture to experience a radical change in the routines and patterns in our daily lives and be forced to adjust based on new information that suddenly appears. It is difficult for many to embrace change as it yields a great “unknown” forcing us to exist in a place of true uncertainty and unfamiliarity. On a more positive note, it is possible to question and challenge our thoughts that enter into our mind that may say something like, “Oh no….what do we do now?”

What if we were to entertain a different question such as “Is there something very valuable that I can learn from being in this place and time and what is happening to me?”
Time and time again families have come into my office and asked a question such as “I just don’t know what we’re going to do.” Families who have had to endure a sudden death, a traumatic event or frightening shift seek support to make sense of what has occurred in their lives. During the initial days or weeks following the experience of a loss or traumatic event the mind and body are placed in “overdrive” and it is essential to learn how to pause and slow down to a more manageable pace. Often times our minds will repeat thought patterns that reinforce notions such as “things will never be the same” or “why or how could this happen to us?” It is at these junctures in our lives where we begin to question the issue of fairness, compare our existence and experiences with those around us. It is in our nature to convince ourselves that what has occurred around us should somehow make sense or have meaning. The reality is that we may never have the answers to these questions but what can occur is something potentially wonderful and simply magical. It is up to us to generate movement in a direction that we may never have thought existed within ourselves.

Following any life altering event comes a new beginning and opportunity for experiences that could lead to a blissful state and perhaps in harmony with our true self and purpose in existing.
Families can rebound in a very similar manner. Often times a leader, one who accesses strength during a moment of grief, hardship or fear emerges and helps the system to move forward. Through words, actions or shifts, therapists many times can help to identify and assist an individual who has emerged and encourage them to continue in their efforts to heal and rebuild. The other members of the family may then be able to draw from the strength of that individual and follow in their path. As parents we need to credit ourselves for attempting to maintain strength during times of extreme hardship and duress, but also we need to recognize and be open to the emergence of other members who may possess the strength to help guide and heal. Therefore it is at this juncture where we can then answer the question presented above regarding the process of learning. From traumatic and life altering events and changes, others around may unpredictably emerge and lead in a direction of peace and comfort.   The emergence of strength and prosperity may not have shown itself through a particular individual or system had that shift, change or event not took place.

Jeffrey Katowitz, LMFT is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist providing individual, couples, family counseling, and parent coordinating. Specialties include adolescent development, separation, divorce, adoption, and blended families. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call Jeffrey at 215-307-0055 or email him at


1st Friday FREE Film Series featuring Wheel of Time
Friday, 12/4, 7:30 pm
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The Path to your New Job
Mondays at 10 am & Wednesdays at 6 pm
> More information

Highly Sensitive Persons Group
Saturday, 12/5, 11 am – 12:30 pm
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Qi Gong FREE Saturday Workshop
Saturday, 12/19, 10:30 am – 11:30 am

Creating Mandala Art
Wednesday, 12/9, 7:30 pm - 9 pm

Breathe More, Alive More, Loving More
Sunday 12/13, 11 am – 1:30 pm
Monthly Drumming Circle
Friday, 12/18, 7:30 pm

Morning Meditation
Free on Tuesdays, 8:30-9:30 a.m.

Evening Meditation
Free on Thursdays, 7:30-8:30 p.m.

Qi Gong Classes
Thursdays at 2 pm & Fridays at 12 pm (2nd & 4th)

> Learn more about these programs and more on The Resiliency Center's events page and online calendar


The Body Speaks its Mind
12/12, 10:00 – 11:00 am

The body speaks to us through breath, movement, sensation, symptoms, posture and other cues; yet how often do we take the time to really listen? This monthly workshop is a basic introduction into somatic awareness (or the body as perceived from within). From the discipline of somatic psychology, Jodi Schwartz-Levy, PhD, guides participants to listen to what their bodies are communicating as an expression of the authentic Self. Somatic exploration enables one to get out of the analytical mind and engage in lower neurological systems where our most basic physiological resources reside. This class is held on the 2nd Saturday of each month between December & May. Cost is $10.

Space is limited, so RSVP is required. For more information contact: or 215-370-7878. For more information about Jodi, see her profile

Integrated Energy Therapy for Kids
12/12, 1 – 4 pm

IET® for Kids is a fun 3-hour adventure that supports our beloved children (approximate ages 6.5-12) in creating wellness for themselves and their communities of friends, family, pets, and Mother Earth. All participants will receive a Basic level IET energy attunement. Students will learn to Heartlink with their Angels to receive support and healing, to send Heartlinks to others, to use a pendulum to dowse energy, and how to clear discordant emotions that are held in the body. IET® for Kids teaches children techniques for self-healing and empowerment that will last a lifetime. This class is a perfect holiday gift!

Program is taught by Mary Katherine Frizzell, Integrated Energy Therapy® Master-Instructor.  Students must be registered prior to class. For more information and to register for class, contact Mary Katherine Frizzell at or 267-968-6442. Mary Katherine is a Master Teacher-Healer as well as a licensed psychotherapist. She has worked with kids of all ages for 20+ years.  Learn more about IET at

Beating the Holiday Blues
Tuesday, 12/8, 7:30 – 9:00 pm

The Holiday Season is expected to be a joyful, fun-filled time for all of us. However, many of us dread this time of year because we are alone, the Season brings up unpleasant memories, or we feel duty-bound to spend time with people we’d rather not be with. Others of us feel the stress and pressure that comes from thwarted expectations, having too much to do in too little time, or family stressors that become exacerbated during Holiday time. Let’s get together and talk about ways we can feel better, no matter what our situation. We’ll brainstorm about steps we can take to cope, or even thrive. The cost is $20.  Please bring a notebook.

For questions or to register for the class, please call Nancy Ignatin at 215-661-1181, or Nancy
is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has been in practice for 20 years and a Registered Yoga Teacher with over 5 years of experience. She incorporates humor and relaxation techniques into her workshops.

Wednesdays at 7:30 pm

A series of discussions based upon the writings of Robert Bly and John Lee. This is an opportunity to reflect on your life as a man. Groups are led by Resiliency Center practitioner Marc Jacobs.

For more information & to sign up, email Cost is $15 per session – or attend the 4 session series for $50. Discussion topics in December include Fathers and Sons (12/9), Relationships (12/16), Career (12/21 – Monday), and Sports Talk (12/30).

Office Space Available
Part-time office space is currently available at the center for trauma-informed healing arts practitioners interested in becoming part of our community. Specialties sought include nutrition, holistic psychiatry, infant massage, and chiropractic. Please contact Elizabeth at or 215-542-5004 to learn more.

Our mailing address is: 602 S. Bethlehem Pike, Ambler, PA • 215-542-5004 •
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