I am a California transplant, having moved here at the age of 10. Colorado, therefore, is home. I miss the ocean because I am more beach than mountains, but I like to explore and see new places. Since before I could walk, I have been on horseback. My parents raised me to respect, love, and be always patient and kind with animals. This is from where my love of animals stems. We had all kinds of animals. I learned that empathy towards animals was a strong gateway to empathy towards humans. I also learned patience through animals; if the animal does not trust you, it will not listen. Horses became a passion of mine at a young age, not only for the reason mentioned above, but also because they teach us to overcome obstacles that feel unmovable. I competed, rode, trained, learned, and handled horse nearly every day of my life. This took me into my first career: veterinary assistant.
In 1995, I met my husband, a soldier on Fort Carson, Infantry Division. We married in 1996, and had our first and only child in 1997. Trial by fire, I learned the ways of the military and the way it effects a family. It was hard and rewarding, uplifting and saddening. I took an interest in how the regular shift in dynamics plays into the mental health of military children. Being in a city with a heavy military presence, I went back to school to become an educator. I graduated with a K-12 endorsement in education with emphasis in English. I have learned so much from my students.
In 2013, my husband passed away as a result of his 3rd tour in Iraq. This was such a critical time in all our lives. At 16, my son could handle this in a variety of ways. Alone and scared, I could have handled it in many ways as well. So we worked together, stayed close, leaned on each other, mourned, and remembered, and made sure we learned from the experience he had so as to better the lives of future Veterans. It was then that I realized, when the time was right, I would go back to school for my psychology degree.
In 2016, the time was right. I went back to school at Adler’s School of Psychology. In December of 2018, I graduated with my MA in Psychology with a specialization in military psychology. Here, I gained invaluable insight into the lives of our service members and how to help them acclimate back into society. Recently, I decided to register as a psychotherapist in Colorado, become EAGALA certified, and practice psychotherapy with equines assisting in client growth. I live in Black Forest, raise my 36 animals here, and live with my new fiancee here, building our lives, my practice, and my skills, one day at a time. I believe in therapy as a means of getting unstuck from our past and driving forward to be the best versions of ourselves. I use animal therapy, psychodynamic theories, as well as crisis intervention, exposure therapy, and positive psychology. I am crisis trained, trauma trained, loss, grief, moral injury and guilt/shame trained, a life coach, trained in personality disorders, families, teens, corporations, kiddos, adults, and so much more. Specialization in Vets, Soldiers, their families, and combat trauma. I look forward to meeting new clients, their families, and loved ones through this incredible new journey. Thank you.