Art for Thought: Using a Creative Therapy For Traumatic Brain Injuries

the f-m foundation gave $7,000 to Heartsprings Community Healing Center to start the sessions

FARGO, N.D. — Many people who have come to Heartsprings Community Healing Center with a traumatic brain injury say they often feel isolated from society because of their disability.

The F-M Area Foundation is now helping the healing center provide art therapy classes for those individuals.

One moment can change the course of someone’s life forever.

For 61-year-old Jon Moore, that moment occurred in April 1977.

He was a student at Utah State and had been on his bike without a helmet. Then suddenly…

“I was hit by a driver under the influence,” Moore said.

The collision left Moore unconscious for three months.

He woke up with a brain injury that impaired the left side of his body.

To this day, he is still trying to heal emotionally but he’s begun, thanks to an art class for people with traumatic brain injuries at Heartsprings Community Healing Center.

“He was a social guy before then but he now has a community of people,” said Jan Nelson, executive director of Heartsprings Community Healing Center.

A community that’s critical for people who have experienced the type of trauma Moore has.

“They often lose friends because they can’t do the same things they used to do with their friends. They don’t fit in socially anymore so it tends to become a very isolating type of disability,” Nelson said.

Moore has been coming to Heartsprings for more than four years. He says it allows him to relax and be himself.

“You come here and you have the openness of the people and no pressure in finishing tasks,” he said.

Now more than 30 years later Moore has forgiven the man who changed his forever, and he’s accepted that his disability isn’t really one after all.

“I have lived more with my disability than without the disability and it’s gotten to a point where it’s not a disability anymore. It’s just my step in my true life,” Moore said.

Heartsprings will hold another art therapy session January 11 and 18.

They will then hold them three times each month until August.

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