I was born and raised in Central Texas and moved to Austin in 1994 to soak up the music, friends, water and trails and to begin my first career path in Nutrition. Working for a dietitian in private consulting practice, I discovered my interest in healing work. I liked the kindness and respect this dietitian had for her clients, many of whom had troubling life circumstances and who needed someone to listen and care. Soon I made a move to Boulder, Colorado and worked as a cook in an assisted living and nursing facility. This put me in regular contact with the bareness of our human condition. Feeding and befriending so many people who lived and died there may have been the first sustained heart-opening experience of my life.
My dad had cancer for several years and I didn't want to stay away from Texas too long so I moved back to Austin - then I got a little restless. I filled out a Peace Corp application but couldn't sent it in, afraid to put too much distance between me and my dad. Eventually I found my way back to university to study Geography - Environmental Resource Management, which led me to graduate school in Syracuse, New York. As a wilderness adventurer and lover of the nature, I thought I had found my niche in bicycle & pedestrian transportation planning, hoping to reconnect people to everyday life and the joy of moving our bodies to get places, but life would take me another way. In 2002 my dad died and I am grateful that I was able to help care for him during the last months of his life and to witness his death. It was a confusing turning point for me and I needed to find my focus.
I discovered Vipassana meditation and began to sit with myself and discovered that the profound opening to what is possible in the subtlety of my body/mind would be my next adventure. Sitting with the courage to meet life as it is brings forward a basic kindness that I had longed for, and a desire to engage more thoroughly in my own life.
I also found a regular yoga practice and was relieved that, over time, this brought emotional release and recalling of some hard past events that I had managed and internalized in my body. Yoga was my first dedicated therapy and in 2005 I become a certified yoga instructor, to pass on the help that had been given to me.
During my first year of teaching, I had a routine of giving my students hands-on adjustments during resting pose. It was poignant to witness their bodies soften, breathing spontaneously deepen and faces open. I was struck to discover that I had an easy love for each person I touched, similar to the connections I felt with the residents of the nursing home - a soft vulnerability opening my heart more and more. This, along with the great help I was receiving as a bodywork client, showed me my next step - so I became a massage therapist in 2007.
I am currently in a 2-year training in Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy with Body Intelligence, which primarily focuses on helping clients connect with their innate health and wellbeing - a profound and essential way to heal. My work is enhanced by so many interests I've pursued over the years: advanced yoga instruction, somatic healing practices such as Feldenkrais, Hakomi and Body-Mind Centering, volunteering for hospice, contact improv dance, running, cycling, traveling and getting to know people from different places and cultures, and volunteering in a women's prison with Truth Be Told.
I live in Central Austin with my sweet husband, two step-sons and two cool cats.
Major training programs and degrees:
Biodynamic Craniosacral Training - Body Intelligence, Austin in progress
Hakomi Mindfulness/Body-Centered Psychotherapy - Hakomi SW, Austin 2012
Massage Therapy Training - Texas Healing Arts Institute, Austin 2007
Thai Massage Training - ITM, Chiang Mai, Thailand 2006
Yoga Teacher Training - Living Yoga Program, Austin 2004
MPS Environmental & Community Land Planning - SUNY ESF, Syracuse 2003
BS Geography - SWTSU, San Marcos 1999
BS Nutrition - SWTSU, San Marcos 1994