For group events see UPCOMING WORKSHOPS here in BECOMING WHOLE...
My greatest passion is holding space and creating experiences with someone so that they see who they are. Know what they feel. Want. Need. And most of all...get a sense of their soul...and in the best of all circumstances, a sense of their purpose here on Earth. From family, to friends, to partners, to clients, it's all the same. Connection. This is who I am. Who are you? And what can we create together that will benefit both of us...the whole of this moment, the structure of this relationship, the greater good. My work. My life is person-centered. You and me. I and thou. There is no place that I take clients, no path I ask my children, grandchildren, friends or partners to walk that I haven't walked myself. Until I felt it was done. I had learned what needed to be learned. Experienced what needed to be experienced. And now a doorway had opened and I stood...we stand...on the threshold of a new beginning in the constantly shifting dance of life: birth - death - rebirth.
In a gratifying one-on-one practice where I am able to employ both ordinary reality planning and problem solving techniques, and also trance work and journeys into non-ordinary states of consciousness, my passion now centers on offering all-inclusive holistic retreat experiences, groups and spiritual walkabouts that focus on psychospiritual growth. My aim and inspiration is to offer all the potential healing modalities that might be achieved in "treatment" and/or spiritual journeys, through an ongoing progression of healing possibilities which empower people to affordably dip in, and out of, powerful experiential work. By progression they are led to deep healing and transformation of life issues, whether in this life, DNA memories, past lives, or even a collective unconscious experience of all the issues up in the world.
BODY AND SPIRIT
As a student of world religions, ancient mystery schools and spiritual practices, I've absorbed understanding that goes far beyond traditional religion. I thank my many teachers for your inspiration! Through guided silent retreats, extensive, years long immersion in Gestalt and Integrative Breathwork, sitting with a Plum Blossom inspired sangha, numerous shamanic spiritual retreats and ceremony, including the sweat lodge, smoking pipe and dance, I have grown incrementally through non-ordinary, transformative experiences of perceiving All That Is. I believe that in the process of becoming our unique whole selves we unfold through body and mind, emotions and spirit...leaving nothing out...embodying our bigger story...our soulful Self.
I began as an accidental mystic and then psychotherapist and author...in that order. I care about people, love, equality, fair wage for fair work, breaking the glass ceiling, a sustainable ecology, peace not war, emotional, mental, physical and spiritual health. And most of all, relationships – universally to the personal – that encourage and support uncovering and empowering the True Self in each of us. Who then from our potent uniqueness, seek, find and embolden causes and concerns that set us on fire. In Gandhi's iconic words: "We must become the change we want to see."
We are so much more than we know. I have my grandmother and mother to thank for helping me believe in magic. The sense that sight, hearing, taste, touch and smell were the whole story didn't hold up to what I was taught, or learned from observation. There is a sixth sense. Equally valid. Available and intended for use. Although, I seriously doubt my grandmother or mother intended to convey this message. Much less lead me into the practice of trusting my intuition.
When I was small, night after night until the story was told, my grandmother read out loud about Joan of Arc. And in the process cast a spell on my imagination. As I listened to the drama of the brave young Frenchwoman, Joan, who trusted her inner "voices" to lead her on a heroic, unheard of pathway for women, I was inspired to be brave and trust my inner thoughts. My beautiful, strong-willed mother, half-laughingly - in order to keep my sister and me in line - insisted that she was a witch who had eyes in the back of her head. There was no reason to doubt this was true. She often proved correct in assessing rule-breaking schemes that I merely thought about. Fairy tales. Disney movies. Proven hunches. Dreams. Fantastical Texas Tall Tales told between great uncles and my grandmother, only proved that magic was real.
Who we are at our core will shine through eventually. Growing up and going to school in the conservative, God-fearing, Piney Woods of East Texas taught me I'd better keep quiet about talking to animals and hearing the wind call my name. It was my secret. And kids do love secrets. So I practiced what I knew more and more, feeling brave, strong, a tad Joan-of-Arc-ish...and still safe from being burned at the stake.
At The University of Texas in Austin with a population as large as my hometown, I sensed what Dorothy experienced being thrown out of Kansas and clueless about where to find the Wizard of Oz. The School of Journalism, my chosen degree, was far more progressive than this small town girl could handle so I opted for the Department of Education, unaware that the need to write would find me someday...regardless. Because being a communicator is a large part of who I am.
In Houston, post college and married, I taught third grade in a weary and worn-out neighborhood, but felt inspired by the spirits of little people with fire in their eyes. After our own children grew beyond baby years, that fire led me to the greater concerns of Houston families, and personal satisfaction inherent in community activism. Playing the role of community organizer, I considered the work professional volunteerism...that would later count as 1000 hours toward satisfying the whole of professional internship hourly experience required for the Texas Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) designation. Working in schools, in hospitals with patients dealing with addictions and mental health issues, and with community agencies, I saw again and again how the human spirit is so much greater than circumstance. And if encouraged in even the smallest ways grows far beyond, and in spite of - or perhaps inspired by - the circumstances of life. During those fifteen years of volunteerism, I served as a working member on several vital community boards, including the Greater Houston Committee for the Prevention of Child Abuse. I also spearheaded the Houston expression of the national War on Drugs effort, which eventually involved 10,000 volunteers,
Beyond a graduate degree in Counseling with a Specialty in Addictive Diseases, along the way I've collected a full backpack of therapeutic approaches: Gestalt, Psychodrama, Psychospiritual Integration, EMDR, Focusing, Eriksonian Hypnosis. In San Antonio, I served as Director of the Gestalt Institute, and became intensely involved in facilitating hospital inpatient recovery programs, where I served as the primary therapist in trauma and addiction recovery week-long intensives. In my private practice, I wrote and - with talented co-therapists - facilitated a highly successful, independent Trauma Resolution Residential Program. Almost as an aside but where my passion lay, for years I wrote a Spiritual Awakening column in the Whole Health magazine, featured in Whole Foods and other shops around town. The seeds of my holistic practice were sown through those small, but effective columns.
When my mother left the planet I finally came clean about our clairvoyant family by writing a memoir, Just Because You're Dead Doesn't Mean You're Gone. People tell me that they've seen themselves in the story and have experienced healing. As my beloved mentor, Keith Miller, shared years ago, we are motivated to write so that eventually - after many shitty drafts - our words serve as a mirror and the reader sees themselves. This is for me, the primary motivation for crafting a book, vulnerably and honestly, knowing that the healing possible for readers far exceeds the possible criticism inherent when a professional drops their persona and allows their common humanity to show through.
Here in Becoming Whole you'll find a schedule of workshops and lectures. As well as the schedule for Integrative Breathwork Retreats. It really does take a tribe to grow and heal. None of us are alone. Together we create a greater force for good.