October 16, 2020

Enter Compassion.

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Cindy Lopez: 

2020. The year that just will not end. We started with COVID-19 in March and sheltering in place. And then layered on school closure and added distance learning. On top of that, we’ve experienced social unrest regarding race and tens of thousands of people evacuated due to wildfires. Really? How much more can we take?

Welcome to CHC’s new Voices of Compassion podcast. My name is Cindy Lopez and I’ll be your host. This is my first ever podcast and also a first for CHC, so it’s pretty exciting! I’ve been working in K-12 education for about 30 years as a teacher and an administrator, both in public and private schools. Most recently, I’ve been working with kids who learn differently. Really, the fact is that each one of us is different and different is good.

I’ve had the opportunity to have hundreds of conversations with parents, kids, teachers, community members and more. I hope you’ll find our Voices of Compassion podcast just what you need these days. In addition to this podcast, CHC or Children’s Health Council provides lots of other services for families. CHC has been privileged to be part of the community here in Palo Alto, California for almost 70 years. We have three locations. Our main location is in Palo Alto and we are honored to have a partnership with Stanford. We also have a location in East Palo Alto and one in San Jose. You can also visit us online at chconline.org. We specialize in ADHD, learning differences, anxiety and depression, and autism for kids, teens and young adults. We take a holistic approach when it comes to looking at a child, so not just focusing on academics, but also looking at physical development, social emotional wellness, executive functioning skills and more that all contribute to a child’s promise and potential. We are very happy to be able to use this podcast platform to reach more people and provide the resources you need right now.

Today, I just want to share a few words from our own Dr. Ramsey Khasho, our Chief Clinical Officer here at CHC. He recently penned this blog on COVID-19 and all the uncertainties of our world today. And he writes:

“The uncertainty is overwhelming. The sheer unknown brings about feelings of anxiety and angst. Without the usual distractions in our everyday lives, everything is magnified. The good and the bad take center stage. This is hard.”

I’m going to pause there for just a moment to let everyone sit with that.

“In some ways we’re getting quite comfortable wearing sweatpants to work and having family around whenever we need a hug. We don’t miss sitting in traffic or commuting, being late for meetings or rushing our kids around to appointments and activities. And some days we can see the silver linings and other days, not so much.”

Dr. Khasho ends by writing, “We know that healing is not linear. Most days, we just want to hide under our covers and hope no one finds us. We are physically and emotionally drained and at the same time have immense gratitude for our health and our family.”

So here we are today. Enter compassion. We all need a little compassion for ourselves and others. As Webster’s puts it, “Compassion is the understanding of another’s pain and the desire to somehow mitigate that pain. It’s when we recognize the suffering of others and take action to help.”

Exercising compassion is more important than ever. We hope that you’ll tune in regularly to our Voices of Compassion podcast to hear about how you can help yourself, your kids, your family and others in your community to make it through another day. We’ll offer thoughts and inspiration that will make you think and even laugh. Compassion can take on many forms. It might be exercising some self-care, learning some tips about how to support your child with distance learning, strategies around talking with your kids or parenting techniques. You will find that all here.

Find us online at podcasts.chconline.org. Remember that is podcasts with an S. Also, please follow us on our socials. Find us on Facebook @chc.paloalto and Twitter and Instagram at CHC_paloalto. You can also visit our YouTube channel at chconlinepaloalto. And we are on LinkedIn. Subscribe to Voices of Compassion on Apple podcasts, Spotify and other podcast apps, and sign up for our Virtual Village email list so you never miss an update or an episode. I always love to hear from you, so send me an email or a voice memo at podcasts@chconline.org. Again, that is podcasts with an S. Or leave us a rating and review.

We look forward to you tuning in each week. After all we are in this together. See you next week.

It takes a village.

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