I lost my mother when I was 26 years old. She took herself off the planet at the age of 49. As you can imagine this left a big hole in my heart. Because she chose to do this on Christmas Day, I found myself revisiting the old wound, the old sadness, the old grief around December 25th every year. My oldest daughter, a therapist, would usually ask me about it during the Christmas season, reminding me that there was still unfinished work to be done there. But what really tipped this point off to me is when I would describe my relationship with my mother to other people, particularly my kids. I still had anger and resentment and negative feelings about it. But let me digress.
My mother and I never had a close relationship. I honestly cannot remember her telling me she loved me, giving me a hug, or encouraging me in anything. I do have pictures that go back to when I was two when she threw me a really beautiful birthday party in Houston, where I was born. She is in the shot. I have another picture of me, probably seven or eight, where she’s trying to hug me, but her breath was boozy and I can actually remember that smell. Feeling these negative feelings over the years became a burden.
I became a mother at age 19. I went on to have four children. What I thought was the most interesting feature of my motherhood experience was that I gave birth to three girls. I remember thinking at very trying times, OMG, how am I going to do this? I didn’t have a decent mother-daughter relationship, how in the world am I going to be there for these girls in the way that they need?
Finally (in my late 30's) I started wondering what I could do to change all of this. I embarked on a plan! I went to different professional women and talked about it. I did women’s groups. I involved myself in healing rituals around mother-daughter relationships. I even had a wonderful saint from India (Ammachi) bless her photo as a way of releasing the negative energy between us. It all helped ... over time. Fast forward.
In 2009, I was offered the career job of my dreams. I was asked to move from the Pacific Northwest to NM to head up a non-profit in a beautiful part of the country as the Executive Director. The compensation package was great, the challenge exciting and I was loving the new adobe-style home I was about to lease-option. I was leaving behind a 14 year tenure as a director in a job I was stuck. My marriage had turned into living separate lives as friends. And I was desperate to get out of the dreary weather in western Washington State, as it put me at risk for S.A.D. I listed my house for sale with a realtor, and said goodbye to my boss and co-workers. My new employer packed up my furniture and moved me five states away. Four months later it all came crumbling down. My new boss, who had just purchased this 12 year-old residential program and was looking to turn it around, was unhappy with me. You see I thought I was going into a situation that offered me the chance to create new and successful ways to help a little-served client base stay in recovery from behavioral health issues. What I soon discovered, however, was that my new boss' real goal was to get the facility licensed as quickly as possible, disregarding the glaring deficiencies that put the program and clients at risk. As you can imagine, I was devastated. I had given up so much security to take on this challenge and now I was left out on an ethical ledge. I had to leave. I resigned my dream job!
I spent the next month in my darling new home looking at options and praying. What now? I could sue or move on! Under the guise of moving on, I was given a message in a dream-state to look into recovery life coaching as a career change. I found a wonderful year-long program that offered distance, but real-time learning. I also chose NOT to go back to Washington State as I had a darling little Casita just south of Tucson that I had been going to for years for sun breaks. Fast forward.
Two years ago, I found myself in my third formal life coach training program in ten years. It was all about storytelling. (The point of telling your story to a life coach trained in this modality is to be able to finally step back a bit from it and see if it still serves you to continue to tell yourself this particular narrative.) During the six months I was learning this new coaching approach, it dawned on me that this is exactly what I had done in my own life. I had been telling my story the same old way, time after time. At some point I was able to see where it only hurt me to keep these old versions up and running. It kept me trapped in old painful feelings. So, with help, I began to change my story!
I started to use gratitude as a spiritual practice. I made a conscious decision at one point to look for anything positive to try to find the gifts in these experiences with mom. I came up with several things to be grateful for. Today my dark memories of these painful events have faded as I have mindfully chosen to replace them with softer ones. Healing is a gift we can give to ourselves, the little child within needs help to find a way to finally have a happy childhood!
I launched my private practice in 2010, after a catastrophic event in my career that led me to changing everything!
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My goal is to help you re-imagine and reinvent your life by rewriting your story. With over 16 years experience in Coaching and a vast history of client success, my individualized positive approach will help you attain your goals.
As a professionally trained and Certified Evidenced-based Personal Development Coach and Hatha Yoga /Meditation Teacher, I have the tools and understanding to help you to create the life you imagine and get a renewed sense of self.
Committing to a healthier lifestyle is just that – a commitment, and it’s a big one that will take a lot a dedication. My commitment is to provide you with accountability, understanding and support as you navigate new areas and make changes.