Stories of recovery
While visiting California years ago, I was relaxing poolside when a random stranger began telling me her story. Unbeknownst to me, she was an actress. When she said, “Thanks for listening. You should be a life coach,” I was intrigued by what was to me a new term. Just a few months later, I enrolled in a coaching school and received my first certification as a Life Coach.
My life story includes recovery from severe childhood trauma, family alcoholism, the suicide of a close cousin, and other major life events at a young age. Working through those events led me into social work as a major in college, and gave me an incredible amount of compassion and empathy for those who go through loss of any kind.
Life strikes without warning
Grief comes in many forms and often strikes without warning. I don’t profess to have answers. My own journey with chronic illness, resulting in a kidney transplant, the death of my father to Alzheimer’s, my mother’s battle with cancer and my recent move halfway across the country weren’t in my plans. The pandemic due to COVID-19 certainly wasn’t in my plans. Yet I have learned that when the pain of grief comes, committing to a way forward is the way to get through it, not forgetting the trauma or denying it, but pushing through it and honoring it.
I patiently walk the grief walk with clients and friends, just as others walked the grief walk with me. The most sacred moment I share is holding space with them in their pain. Being with clients when they are raw and hurting is an honor and a privilege, and I don’t take it lightly. When they are ready to move ahead it is an even bigger privilege, knowing how difficult their forward movement is for them.
The treasure of daily joy
Surviving loss and trauma is one thing but carrying on after the trauma is the real battle, discerning what’s next, and finding joy in each day which is the real treasure.
A graduate of The Hutchison School and Arkansas State University (social work major), I also studied at Bowdoin College and Iliff School of Theology. I was licensed as a Realtor for several years and also as a social worker in the state of Arkansas.
I now live in the San Francisco Bay Area, attend First Presbyterian Church in San Anselmo, California, where I serve as a Deacon, and am an active member of PEO (a philanthropic organization). I love spending time with my little Havanese, Mercy, who is in training to be a Coaching therapy dog, and enjoy the many cultural activities the Bay Area offers.
If you want to find your joy, I’m the Coach for you.