I’m launching a website!
Like trees in a forest, clinicians in private practice may appear to be standing apart, but In order to thrive our roots are deeply, intricately interwoven. We lean into each other for connection and support.
This Thanksgiving, I am pausing to convey heartfelt kudos to some of the trees in my personal forest. I am grateful to have an amazing network of family, friends and colleagues, as well the good fortune of mentorship and belonging to more formal supervision, community of practice, and personal development groups. Their kindness and expertise helped make the daunting process of transitioning to a mainly virtual psychotherapy and consulting practice in the midst of a global pandemic remarkably seamless.
As I step into this next chapter, I think back with gratitude to the nurses who mentored me with toughness, tenderness, and a holistic view of health and illness. They taught me to lead collaboratively, with care, composure, levity and respect for human dignity. The families I worked with as a nurse, a nurse practitioner and a cancer coach taught me by opening my heart to compassion for illness and suffering, and my mind to the true meaning of resilience in the face of adversity. My paediatric patients taught me about the importance of play and choice in healing. Working both in Indigenous health and with newcomers to Canada broadened my perspective on the diversity and interconnectedness of human experience. I no longer see people as separate from intergenerational family, community or the natural world.
There are many perspectives on mental health. Not all of them are kind or person centered. I am grateful to my Narrative Therapy mentors for guiding me in such a deeply reflective, collaborative, strengths-focused process of getting to the heart of each person’s story. I am at heart a storyteller, fond of metaphor and poetry, and helping people reclaim their positions as heroes of their personal narratives. I appreciate belonging to Collaborative Practice groups. Connecting with diverse mental health practitioners around narrative concepts every month keeps me engaged, passionate and grounded in this work.
I am grateful for ongoing mentoring in experiential, mind-body approaches to therapy. Profound and playful, Sand Tray Therapy goes where no words can venture. I love this little corner of my practice and the deep work that happens there. Somatic Experiencing Therapy training and supervision are rocking my world, enriching my work with clients. Both trauma and healing are embodied experiences. So is pleasure. I feel deeply privileged to have learned from Dr. Peggy Kleinplatz and able to bring a slice of her years of dedication and research on Optimal Sexuality into my practice with couples
My spiritual path keeps me centered and making meaning in this work. I owe a debt of gratitude to a long line of wise and compassionate teachers of yoga, meditation and dance, as well as Reiki and Therapeutic Touch, and the Inner Journey community. I have soft places to land, learn, laugh, and connect with myself and others. I receive insightful, practical and heart opening teachings that enhance my life and my work. I care deeply for the people I have met through these communities, and look forward to reconnecting in person once this pandemic is over. In the meantime, we Zoom…..
A heartfelt shout out to Erin Nazarali, communications genius, for the infinite patience, technical skill and creativity she brought to designing this website, Michelle Valberg and Leslie-Anne Barrett for extraordinary, soul-capturing photography, and my mentors with the Wellness Leadership Academy for their coaching and expertise.
I am incredibly grateful to the clients and supervisees I get to work with every day. Thank you for trusting me and teaching me. Thank you for your patience during this time of adjusting to a new normal of working mainly virtually and by phone.
Lastly, I want to express deep appreciation to my family and close friends. I feel loved and supported.