“Scared and sacred are spelled with the same letters. Awful proceeds from the same root word as awesome. Terrify and terrific. Every negative experience holds the seed of transformation.”
~ Alan Cohen
"We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty."
After growing up in Houston all my life, I was eager to see the world. I have worked with children and families in the social work field for the past 25 years in a variety of places and settings—from the inner cities of Boston, Denver and Detroit, to the rural towns and tribal communities of Montana and Alaska. I received my Bachelor's degree from Boston College in 1998, spent my next 2 years in Americorps, and went on to receive my MSW from the University of Michigan in 2004. I am deeply interested in the differences that exist within communities and families with respect to the cultures that develop and are celebrated, and therefore spent the first half of my career wandering, or as John Muir would say, sauntering--to explore with great curiosity and reverence everywhere that I could. I believe that a variety of things can impact a person or a family's identity---the land that surrounds them and its history, their family's intergenerational experience, their genetics, their ethnic origins, the friends who support them, the national culture at large, day to day stressors, the system that educated them, and on and on. A social work perspective is looking at a person through all of these lenses, not just one, and empowering them to navigate all of these settings to meet their needs and overcome hardship in a healthy way.
I have taught in schools, supported families in their homes as well as in crisis shelters, worked with children providing therapeutic care in residential treatment, as well as school based mental health services, and have been in private practice since 2014. I have a keen understanding of the many systems in place that impact children and parents (medical, educational, legal, and financial), and have much experience navigating them with families. I have a very strong respect for a family's ability and desire to survive hardship and often thrive when given the support they need. The key to this success is the relationship that we build together. That relationship is based on a safe, respectful, and nonjudgmental space that we create during our work together.
I believe that for many, finding a good fit in therapy can be like finding a good fit with a longtime medical doctor. It's a place or a person that feels good to to come back to whenever life is throwing a new transition or curveball your way. I have some clients who are looking for short-term intervention for acute emotional distress or who are going through a sudden or difficult transition in life. I have others who are looking for a long-term relationship to support them through life's developmental phases (their own or their child's) to gain understanding and a sense of competence. And still others who want to explore their own early childhood experiences to see how their history might be impacting their relationship with their partner or children in the present. I am here to help all clients find healing and understanding so that they can experience a sense of growth and expansion.