Who I Am
When I was a kid, I loved catching toads. I’d sneak out at night with a flashlight and a bucket and catch as many toads as I could find. So it’s no surprise my career began in the outdoors, working as a wildlife biologist. In the nearly two decades spent doing research and field work on bats, bugs, and bears, I also took a keen interest in how healing, sometimes even transformative, nature can be for people.
Now, I love working with people to help them find healing and peace from very difficult, often traumatic, circumstances and events in their lives. I stay current with new training opportunities in trauma treatment, and I’m constantly searching out new books and journal articles to read. But really, my greatest teachers are my own life experiences with trauma and being an adoptive parent. These are what really allow me to connect with others deeply and authentically.
Clients often tell me they appreciate my genuineness. Who I am as a person is essentially who I am as a therapist. I’m gentle, calm, and unhurried, and people often tell me they value my warmth and thoughtfulness. And I still have a good bit of the scientist in me – intelligent, curious, and perceptive. I love learning and can be a little nerdy in my excitement at reading new scientific articles or clinical books. All of this put together means my therapeutic style is unique – a therapist’s warm, empathic sensitivity combined with a scientist’s analytical, often unconventional, ways of looking at things.
- Master of Social Work
- Master of Science in Biology
- International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation
- Attachment & Trauma Network, Inc.
- Adoption Knowledge Affiliates
- Austin Group Psychotherapy Society
- National Association of Social Workers
- Austin SandTray Association
For the past 10 years, I have worked to help people heal from trauma. Most of my work has been with adults and teens affected by interpersonal violence and sexual abuse. Over the years, I have also worked with people struggling with suicidal thoughts, self-harming behaviors, eating disorders, homelessness, chronic mental illness, and substance abuse.
At the End of the Day
I know what it’s like to heal from trauma and secondary trauma. And I know how difficult it can be to raise a child who has challenging behaviors or who has experienced early childhood loss, abuse, or neglect.
An essential part of my work is making sure I’m taking great care of myself, both in and out of the office. I couldn’t give you my best if I neglected this. So, when I need a break, I get out my guitar, put on my running shoes, pick up a good book, or go on a day trip to somewhere interesting. When I need to restore myself, I head outdoors, hiking, backpacking, camping, birding, or trail running. All of these allow me to enjoy my life, keep my work sustainable and energizing, and give you the best treatment I can.