Winter, Rosalind

Journal of Sandplay Therapy, Volume 11, Number 1, 2002

KEY WORDS: September 11, sandplay therapy, 911, symbol formation.

ABSTRACT: Although my training and practice as an Analyst had prepared me to live with the tension of opposites, and with being in a state of unknowing, nothing could have prepared me for what I would face the morning of 9/11 when I entered my local public high school. This piece is a personal reflection primarily about my involvement at Montclair High School as I coordinated the thirty or so local therapists to work with the teachers and staff to contain, support, and empower our community of students. The faculty and staff of the high school, particularly under the flexible and responsive leadership of its Principal, Elaine Peeler-Davis, were remarkable in their tireless dedication and commitment. I don’t know how we all made it to school everyday after staying late into the night to do what had to be done. For me personally, STA, through the Internet, became my container; my place to check in, to speak and to be heard. Through STA’s generosity, I was able to offer the town and the schools our knowledge and experience of the use of symbols in expressing and processing trauma. This article chronicles my experiences during one of the most personally and professionally demanding periods of my life. (Montclair, New Jersey, is 12 miles due west of the Empire State Building)