My formal journey in Psychology began with a BSc in Psychology in 1996. I then lived and worked in Thailand, West Africa, and Poland for 5 years, to discover what there was outside of my family-of-origin, christian religion, and north american culture. In particular, I was fascinated with the expressions of spirituality that I encountered, as I searched for my own meaningful spiritual connection. During these 5 years I travelled extensively through many countries in West Africa, Eastern Europe, and Asia.
In my time living internationally, an Eating Disorder which had been lurking in the background for several years, erupted to its' fullness. I surrendered to comprehensive treatment - hospitals, psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, nutritionists, individual and group therapy, and so on. My yoga practice which started in 1998 was central, and essential to the healing process - asanas, pranayama, and mantras brought me back into deep relationship with my body. I went back to school for an MA in Counselling Psychology - my passion for depth psychotherapy ignited along with the desire to specialize in Eating Disorders. After working with several organizations and internships, I opened my private practice in 2004.
In 2008 I had my first profound spiritual experience which drastically altered my life. By this time I had been practicing and teaching yoga for 10 years, and the context in which I held this experience was a Kundalini Awakening. In 2009 I entered a PhD program for Counselling Psychology at the University of Victoria, specializing this time in Transpersonal Psychology, in order to better understand my own process, as well as to deepen my understanding of psychology as soul work, and the integration of plant medicines, altered states of consciousness, spiritual awakenings, dreamwork, jungian psychology, eco psychology, and body and nature based therapies.
In recent years I continue my professional development in jungian psychology, dreamwork, eco-psychology, trauma and the body, ancestral work, and nature based therapies. At the deepest level, I see therapy as care of the soul; and this must include the body - our body and the earth body - as much as our mind, heart, and spirit. Relationships with humans and other-than-humans are my teachers - mentors, friends, partners, my daughter, plant medicines, animals, the elements of the natural world, sun moon and stars...along with the constant learning to be in reciprocity with all that is, seen and unseen.
Nootka Island to Gold River
One of my favourite expressions of creativity is drawing and painting mandalas. Working with the Yantras of the Dash MahaVidyas (Ten Wisdom Goddesses of a Tantric cosmology) is part of my mandala creations. The Ten Wisdom Goddesses represent ten cosmic powers. As we meditate on and embody each of these Goddesses, we open up access to parts of ourselves that have been dormant, and strengthen aspects that we are naturally inclined towards.