A Brighton woman who survived an assault 25 years ago is sharing how she overcame the obstacles and trauma it created in her life. On her way home from work in 1993, Wendy Jo Morrison was kidnapped at gunpoint and sexually assaulted before managing her escape. With a new perspective on life, she followed her dream of joining the Peace Corps.

After completing her service and working successfully back state-side as a high level executive, Morrison was diagnosed with Multiple System Atrophy, or MSA in 2010. MSA is a terminal disease with no known cause, cure or remission. The brain stops telling what the body to do, and Morrison reached a point where she lost movement in her arms and legs and was paralyzed for hours at time each day. Believing her disease may have been caused by the trauma and stress earlier in her life, Morrison went on a mission to search for natural, alternate healing.

It was in Greece that she discovered Biodynamic Breath and Trauma Release, or BBTR. She says the technique has existed for thousands of years and changes the body’s chemistry. Morrison said she has used it to ween herself off of 27 different medications, and while diagnosed with a terminal disease, is still “standing here.” Doctors back home, Morrison said, say they tell her they don’t know what she doing, but to keep doing it because it’s working.

Now, the only person in the United States with certification in this, Morrison is using it to help others work through their trauma. She has founded the non-profit organization, UBU Today, and is helping victims get their lives back. She said that trauma is devastating on many levels, but can also act as a doorway to personal growth and healing. Their workshops, she says, create an opportunity for people to uncover and let go of the effects trauma has had on their life. Morrison says that many times people don’t consciously know that they are holding on to trauma. She continued by saying that BBTR is effective for more than just trauma sufferers. People dealing with anxiety, low self-esteem, grief, loss, identity, or those who just want to feel better can draw benefits from it, she says. Morrison said the lives they are helping and the work they are doing far outweighs the judgement society takes on her for using this holistic approach.

Earlier this week she was recognized by Governor Rick Snyder as a winner of the 2018 Governor’s Service Award. Morrison was named Volunteer of the Year for her work and advocacy to survivors. She, and other award winners, will be honored in a ceremony on June 5th in East Lansing. Morrison will be a guest on WHMI’s Viewpoint this Sunday morning at 8:30.

Morrison says that UBU Today currently offers individual Breathwork sessions and workshops to victims of trauma and their support systems. Specifically, they have built partnerships with LACASA in Livingston County, Wayne County Safe, Michigan State Police (MSP) & Prosecuting Attorneys Association of Michigan (PAAM). She also says the Larry Nassar scandal at MSU has brought tremendous local awareness to people using their voices. She was recently introduced as a "Senior Survivor" to those impacted by Nassar's crimes and says UBU Today is currently working with those more than 150 survivors to assist them by offering specifically tailored workshops. (MK/JK)