Parallel Session 19

The Power of Stories



"There are no answers, only stories, waiting to be told." - Carrie Cox
In this workshop, participants will learn about the power of words; the power of voice; the power of stories.  It is by finding our voices and sharing our stories that we are able to take back our power and begin to heal, peeling back layers of the often-false stories that the world around us has written on our bodies.  Carrie will introduce participants to different ways of sharing stories (through written word; spoken word; arts), and then will lead participants to develop their own creative process of finding and sharing the stories that were there, inside them, all along.  This workshop will provide educators and teachers with different ideas that they will then be able to use in their classrooms or schools, but is also geared towards anyone who has longed to share their stories through different creative forms.



The idea for this workshop has risen up out of my own healing process.  When I recovered my life from ED (in my case, anorexia nervosa) more than eight years ago, I began to share my story: first through public speaking engagements for organizations such as NEDIC, Sheena's Place, and NIED; next through writing my blog which is centered around life lessons for my young daughter, Zoe from my perspective as a single mum (; and finally, in the last two years, through beginning to share my story through spoken word at the NEDIC spoken word events.  Through my lived experiences as a woman who recovered her life from ED and also through my research experiences as a woman who almost finished her PhD related to eating disorders and the education system (see my recent NEDIC blog post: What We Gain) as well as my professional experiences as an elementary teacher, I have witnessed and felt, first-hand, the power of sharing one's own story through different kinds of creative forms because of the simple reason that ED thrives in silence and shame.  ED's voice becomes loudest when our own voices are silent.  The louder and prouder we become in sharing our stories, no matter how messy or imperfect they may be, the quieter that ED becomes in our world as a whole.  This is the power of story; this is the power of our own stories.


Knowledge Level: All 


Presenter Biography 

Carrie Cox, B.Ed., Ph.D. (ABD) is a woman who recovered her own life from an eating disorder (manifesting in the form of anorexia nervosa) in 2008.  She is an elementary teacher; spoken word poet; workshop facilitator; public speaker; eating disorder awareness advocate in local, provincial and national media; and, first and foremost, a mum to a beautiful girl, Zoe.  Carrie has presented numerous workshops for organizations such as NEDIC, ETFO, ETT, OSSTF, and Sheena's Place, and has been honoured to speak at fundraising and awareness events for NEDIC, Sheena's Place, and NIED.  Her PhD research examined the Ontario Health and Physical Education curriculum documents and the reproduction of body norms and body pedagogies in the classroom and education system, working towards the possibility of body activism in the classroom.