“Instructions for living a life:
Tell about it.”
― Mary Oliver
I am a Licensed Mental Health Therapist (#LH60825530) in the state of Washington. I received my Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology from The Seattle School of Theology and Psychology. I have a BA in Criminal Justice from The University of Delaware.
In life, in person…
I recognize the courage it takes to invite someone else into your healing process. Journeying alongside people as they face giants in their life like their past traumas, grief, conflict, shame, anxiety, and depression, and then move toward healing, health, and wholeness, is what I am most passionate about.
Growing up I felt an enormous amount of pressure to act and present myself in a certain way. Often I was fixated on others' perceptions of me. I tried my best to seem like I had it “all together.” The pressure that I felt eventually caught up with me in the form of anxiety that made me feel out of control. I realized I was not able to contain the anxiety that I felt on my own and I decided to seek out therapy in my early adulthood. Therapy helped me begin to recognize my “false self” facade and the ways in which it was no longer working for me. I realized that in an effort to appear perfect I was abandoning my own needs, feelings, and experiences.
Through this therapeutic work I began to find my true self buried under the layers of perfectionism that had kept it hidden away. I learned how to be vulnerable and honest within my relationships. I started recognizing my needs, fears, and emotions that held me back. I became aware of my feelings of inadequacy buried below the surface. In recognizing and naming this place of shame I was able to begin the work of self-compassion and allowing myself to be present with my own experiences and in relationships with others. For the first time I was able to make decisions from a place of congruence and intentionality. For much of my life I have feared that showing the painful and flawed parts of myself to others would result in disconnection and failed relationships. Throughout this continued journey I have found the opposite to be true. As I unpack more about the vulnerable parts of me and share this within safe relationships, my connections with others continue to become more secure and rooted.
I approach therapy with a holistic perspective, being mindful of the body, the mind, spirituality, and relational context. I invite you into a process of cultivating self-compassion, discovering your authentic self, and experiencing greater depth in your relationships.
I am a New Yorker and have nostalgia for the Northeast fall season. To this day I can still taste and smell it. The water and mountains of the PNW feed my creative soul, and I have found creation is not merely about producing it is about expressing ones own individuality. The words below remind me of the magic of memory and how we can find those places again.
"You know, I do believe in magic. I was born and raised in a magic time, in a magic town, among magicians. Oh, most everybody else didn’t realize we lived in that web of magic, connected by silver filaments of chance and circumstance. But I knew it all along. When I was twelve years old, the world was my magic lantern, and by its green spirit glow I saw the past, the present and into the future. You probably did too; you just don’t recall it. See, this is my opinion: we all start out knowing magic. We are born with whirlwinds, forest fires, and comets inside us. We are born able to sing to birds and read the clouds and see our destiny in grains of sand. But then we get the magic educated right out of our souls. We get it churched out, spanked out, washed out, and combed out. We get put on the straight and narrow and told to be responsible. Told to act our age. Told to grow up, for God’s sake. And you know why we were told that? Because the people doing the telling were afraid of our wildness and youth, and because the magic we knew made them ashamed and sad of what they’d allowed to wither in themselves.
After you go so far away from it, though, you can’t really get it back. You can have seconds of it. Just seconds of knowing and remembering. When people get weepy at movies, it’s because in that dark theater the golden pool of magic is touched, just briefly. Then they come out into the hard sun of logic and reason again and it dries up, and they’re left feeling a little heartsad and not knowing why. When a song stirs a memory, when motes of dust turning in a shaft of light takes your attention from the world, when you listen to a train passing on a track at night in the distance and wonder where it might be going, you step beyond who you are and where you are. For the briefest of instants, you have stepped into the magic realm.
That’s what I believe."
- from Its a Boys Life written by Robert McCammon