“It’s an awful risky thing to live.” Carl Rogers
When you are in a session with me, I am with you 100%. Listening. Walking beside you. You are the expert of your own life. No one knows you or your circumstances better than you. It is my job to hear you and guide you toward the resolutions you seek. I believe that change is always possible. Whether there is something from your past you want to resolve or issues that have come up recently we can work through them together. I believe in making my sessions safe spaces, free of judgment, for you to share openly and without reservation. My theoretical orientation is person-centered, based on the teachings of Carl Rogers. I also respect different techniques and interventions of Adlerian (Alfred Adler) and Narrative (Michael White) therapies.
Having experience and education in palliative care, death, grief, and bereavement I’m very interested in helping people working through these challenges. Grief is also experienced when we move through other types of loss such as separation from a partner, the ending of a friendship, a pregnancy, no matter which trimester for women or men, a job, or even the loss of your independence due to physical injury or illness. I can relate to most of those losses; even if I can’t, I feel confident to still work through it with you. I am here to offer you hope and encourage you to be who you want to be. To embrace your past, move beyond trauma and grief, and look and work toward your future. I want to help you realize resiliency and growth after trauma.
As someone in the second half of my life, I come to your therapy session with a wealth of life experience. I’m a cis woman, who has been married for 36 years and we have one son who is in his early 30s. My Bachelor of Liberal Arts degree specialized in Psychological Counselling and Human Health and Behaviour. My undergrad degree is from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington. I am an American expatriate living in Vancouver for 30+ years. Longer than I lived in the States. I am currently pursuing a Master of Counselling Psychology at Adler University. I have worked/volunteered in the non-profit sector most of my adult life focussing on women’s issues, crisis intervention, the arts, and palliative care. I am particularly interested in how young adults move through the palliative care system. Our family has experienced the deaths of parents and in-laws in recent years, each in a different way which gives me insight into topics such as Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD) and death as a result of an overdose. I was a Birth Doula for a short time and am looking forward to becoming an End-of-Life Doula in the near future, after graduating with my Master's.
I am adopted – having known my whole life – and have connected with some of my birth family. It has been a mostly rewarding experience. The topics of why you should or shouldn’t look for your birth family, the result of your search – positive or negative – or that your birth parent(s) have contacted you, and your feelings about any of these occurrences or as an adoptee are definitely worth exploring. I have also recently struggled with chronic pain, which is mostly controlled, and some unfortunate accidents which have challenged me, especially with regard to mobility and hearing loss. I have a whole new understanding of decreased mobility and accessibility issues.
When I’m not in session
I love gardening, although my abilities have been thwarted for the last couple of years. I also take care of many indoor plants. Music is almost always playing when I’m awake. I enjoy most kinds of music having grown up in a home with parents who were musicians. I enjoy photography and visual art and am I also a patron of live theatre when I have the chance as well as movies. Recently I have, joyously, discovered audiobooks.