I love the inhabitants of the animal kingdom. As a child, they were there for me as a source of unconditional love and support during a very difficult childhood. I spent countless hours with animals as they helped me to ground, relax and be in the moment. I grew up extremely competent as ACAs (adult children of alcoholics) often do. After a great deal of personal psychotherapy, I went into the field myself to help others heal from their own Post Traumatic Stress Disorders, resulting from their childhood trauma. I also worked with couples to help them identify and heal dysfunctional patterns in their relationships which generally are a result of their childhood experiences and decisions about them. I built and ran a very large and successful counseling practice, which included five psychotherapy groups per week, each with eight participants; supervised and trained interns from the college; conducted intensive counseling weekend workshops; and trained and supervised local therapists. I became a multi-tasker extraordinaire … and a work addict.
When My Life Changed
In April of 1997 I died, or nearly died. I was thrown from my horse, landing on my helmet-less head on a gravel road. The craniotomy to drain two hematomas saved my life … but not my lifestyle. The part of my brain that was damaged, the right frontal lobe, controlling executive function (multi-tasking) made it impossible for me to operate as I did before. It forced me into operating on only one track at a time, the present moment; the place where we go when we practice mindful meditation; the place where the animals live.
Connecting with the Animals
Immediately after returning home nine days later, with my head half shaved and stapled, unable to keep my balance walking on uneven ground, my life entered a new and dramatic phase. Wild and domestic animals worked tirelessly, by creating a multitude of unusual encounters, to let me know they were speaking to me. It took a year of these unusual encounters to get past believing they were only interesting coincidences. I have since learned that coincidence doesn’t mean happenstance as many of us think, but rather it is when two events come together perfectly to occupy the same space and time offering some kind of profound meaning.
My Work With The Animals
I began working as a professional animal communicator in 1999, doing private animal communication workshops, teaching people how to understand the animals without having to have a knock on the side of the head. In 2010, I began to practice again as a psychotherapist with humans. I have found the two practices work very well together. Many of the techniques I have used with humans over the years also work with animals. And animals often tell me what their humans need to heal by acting out what they are not addressing, such as anger or fear.
I now live on the Western Slope of Colorado with my husband, dog Ellie, and cat Sierra. I do telephone life coaching with humans, phone and in person animal communication sessions, animal communication workshops and public speaking. As I have been blessed by my experiences throughout my life and especially so since April 1997 when my life was turned upside down so dramatically, I offer to you my learning and experience to increase the quality of your lives through your connection with the animal kingdom … and yourselves.