Helping ALL people... regardless of their ability to pay.
Summer is Almost Here
By: Megan Miessler, LCSW, DCE


As I walk through school campuses during the final weeks of school, I can feel the anxiety increasing; students' exhaustion setting in and teachers counting the days until summer arrives. There are a flood of emotions that come upon us as the school year comes to a close..... There is excitement, expectation, and relief but also anxiety and tears that come through having to say goodbye to teachers and friends. These are all signs that a transition is coming - a new normal will take place over the summer and lead to the next steps in academic careers. Some students will begin next year in a new setting, making new friends, and adjusting to new routines. Other students will return to the same setting and same friends but will experience growth and development over the summer. 
  
Transitions can be difficult for students and teachers as we don't understand what that "new normal" will look like at the end of this transition. Students may wonder who will be in their class next year and if their teacher will be nice.  Teachers might start questioning what sort of dynamic they will have in their classroom the next year and what curriculum changes the new school year might bring. We can assist our students and teachers by allowing them to celebrate the close of the year, express their feelings of loss or anxiety, and share their excitement about the future. One teacher recently shared with me, "Our classroom is just requiring more brain breaks these days...." As excitement and anxiety grows toward the end of this school year, our students and teachers will need more breaks... more times to refocus themselves as they are filled with emotion during transitions. These times will allow them to concentrate on all the great memories that they made over the past year and enjoy the time they have in their current school and classroom.
  
It is not only our students who are in transition, but we here at LCS are experiencing a transition as our School Counseling Ministry grows and expands. We are excited, anxious, and hopeful about the future of this program. As part of our expansion, we are launching a crowdfunding project through We Raise. We encourage you to learn more about this by going to We Raise and searching our project. We would welcome your support through this transition and expansion.

Happy Summer!  

LCS in the Community

 - Megan Miessler, Scott Gress and Dr. Armstrong are leading a five session webinar called "Navigating Through the Storm".  More information below.
- Dr. Armstrong attended the Lutheran Services in American National Conference in Minneapolis.
- Dr. Armstrong facilitated staff consultations for two congregations.
- In June, Dr. Armstrong will be speaking at the LCMS Missionary Orientation.

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Hearts for Families Grant

We are currently raising funds for our Hearts for Families Grant.  This grant help families, couples, and individuals dealing with family issues.  Our grants help us achieve our mission: Helping ALL people... regardless of their ability to pay.  We thank you for helping us achieve this mission.
Navigating the Storms Webinar

On April 21, Scott Gress, Megan Miessler, and Dr. Armstrong began a webinar series on "Navigating the Storms". This five session webinar focused on the different "storms" church professionals may experience in their ministry and world.

If you are interested in viewing the sessions, click HERE.

Registration is open for "Forgiven: A Walk to Save Minds".  On September 24th at 8am, LCS will be partnering with LiveUCF to put on a walk-a-thon on UCF's campus 
to bring awareness and support to Mental Health and Suicide Prevention.  Sign up now and spread the word! If you would like to be a sponsor for this event or if you have any questions, register below or contact Jamie - jamie@lcsfl.com.  
May is Mental Health Month

Mental Health Awareness Month has been observed in May in the United States since 1949, reaching millions of people in the United States through the media, local events, and screenings.  During the month, National Health America runs a number of activities which are based on a different theme each year.
      This year's theme for Mental Health Month is - Life with Mental Illness - and will call on individuals to share what life with a mental illness feels like for them in words, pictures and video by tagging their social media posts with #mentalillnessfeelslike (or submitting to MHA anonymously).  Posts will be collected and displayed on a special page on MHA's website
       The purpose of this month is to raise awareness about mental illness, such as depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder.  It also aims to draw attention to suicide and to educate communities about psychological disorders, while reducing the stigma that surrounds them.  The month came about by presidential proclamation.
Overcoming Disability
By: Tracy Kristoff, LMFT, RPT
Before I was a therapist, I had a wonderful opportunity to attend Handicapped Encounter Christ (H.E.C) retreats with some of the most amazing people.  These retreats focused on pairing abled-body people with disabled-body people to explore God's love together in a retreat weekend.  Abled-body people had an opportunity to be the arms, legs, and voices of others, while disabled-body people had the opportunity to break down the negative or limiting assumptions about disabilities.  I have several close friends who have taught me that everyone has a disability, some are visible and some are not, and for that lesson I am forever grateful.  Here are some of the things that my friends have taught me over the years:   
1.) No matter your ability you are still a child of God, "Fearfully and wonderfully made."  Wholly loved and adored!  
2.) Trust that God has a plan for you and your circumstance.  Proverbs 3:5-6 is a wonderful mantra for trusting in God's plan.  
3.) Life as you know it can (and will) be filled with questions and ambiguity; embrace the ambiguity.  
4.) Giving back to the community can help you break through an emotional wall that keeps you from doing the things that you love. Go to Ablethrive.com for a wonderful community of people who give back to the differently-abled community.  
5.)  Lean on the support of family and friends as a means to having a happy and meaningful life.
Lastly, don't be limited by your circumstances; a positive attitude and a determined spirit can help you create opportunities to reinvent yourself!   

Lutheran Counseling Services |  admin@lcsfl.com | 407.644.4692 | lcsfl.com
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