Why I Started (and almost gave up on) a Non-profit

When I orginally started Trauma to Art. It was a blog with posts of work I found inspiring and helpful in my own grieving process. My mother dying was one of the worst things, but also the most meaningful experiences of my life. It forced me to grow up quickly in some ways. It forced me to confront mortality and dissect my role in our very complex mother-daughter relationship.

Ultimately it led me to start Trauma to Art. At first, I was in love. My little site brought me to stumble upon some of the very best moments in my life. The traffic to the site goes up and down but the conversations it starts when I meet people is unparalleled. I share with people, they share with me. Simply put, that’s what I want t2a to facilitate: deep meaningful dialogue.

Months later I find myself working on website redesigns and fighting with GuideStar so I can accept donations on facebook. Surprisingly enough, I don’t find either activity exhilarating. Recently three big things happened.

One, I got fired. I was set to speak at a conference in August. I love speaking in front of people, especially about topics that excite me. However, the event will be great but it does not align with my thoughts on the subject of grief and in ways directly targets a group that I think is very well served. It’s the cynics that I’m after and they’re a hard nut to crack.

Two, after getting fired I started to think about what I really wanted to be spending my time doing. Instantly I had a burst of creativity and wrote 1300 for my chapter. My chapter refers to a book project I have going with an American University professor about bringing lasting international mourning traditions to the United States. That burst came at the perfect time. Just as I was about to shut down, call it a day, I had the best hour of 2012 writing those 1300 words. The chapter is 6000 but I’m in good shape.

Three, Trauma to Art is hosting a Mom-inspired Art Workshop at Mass College of Art March 22, 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm. The details are here. All of the work we create will be on display in MassArt’s Student LIfe Gallery May 15-18. Please share the event with people you think might be interested. The event is free and I couldn’t be more excited about it!

Oh whoops. A fourth thing happened. Our T2A jewelry is now on sale at the Karenna Maraj Studio in Cushing Square. Karenna is a dear friend, a fellow artist and the first person to teach a t2a workshop. Her support has been unbelievable. She donated the materials and the space to us plus she only takes 5% with the rest going to t2a.

Thanks for reading. Thanks for your support. Thanks for being you.


At the Karenna Maraj Studio in Cushing Square we are selling t2a Live Your Dreams necklaces. Each necklace was made with five beads to bring its owner a lifetime of abundance, love, confidence, happiness and goodwill.


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