From the time I was a child, trying to save baby birds in shoe boxes (sometimes I still do), I knew that I was a rescuer. As the years went on, I found that this was reinforced in a multitude of ways. By the time I entered college I was convinced that becoming a psychologist was my path. And being in college in California in the 70s, my passions expended to include the spiritual practices of meditation and yoga.
After marriage and three children, I went back to school to earn a Master's Degree in Counseling, a graduate degree in Marriage and Family Therapy, a PhD in Clinical Psychology, and completed a year of post doctoral work at the Karen Horney Psychoanalytic Institute. I developed a successful traditional private practice, taught clinical techniques to future psychologists in graduate school, and felt confident that I had the skills necessary to guide those who sought my help.
However, life being what it is, mine turned upside down. As a way to deal with the challenges I faced, I followed the traditional medical and psychological routes but they provided only limited help. I personally learned that as effective as psychotherapy can be, it has its limitations.
I expanded my search to my spiritual roots including Buddhist, Kabbalistic and Christian teachings, energy medicine, and shamanism, to name a few. I also resumed my meditation and yoga practices. What I discovered was that each tradition was like a bead on a necklace that I was custom designing for myself. As I continued to gather my "beads" I realized that I was being drawn deeply into spirituality and it provided with the answers I was seeking!
I felt compelled to bring various aspects of what I was practicing into my work. I started a group for spiritually minded people where we used psychotherapy and spiritual principles to deal with everyday issues. I became a Certified Yoga teacher and developed a program entitled "Attaining Mind-Body Balance" using meditation, yoga, and group therapy. As my spiritual practice widened and deepened, I expanded my spiritual quest--I went to the land of the Buddha in India with Thich Nhat Hahn, I learned shamanism in Guatemala and Chile with local shamans, I studied the Kabbalah, and so forth. As I evolved, my life turned around and I felt more joyful and at peace than ever. To my surprise and delight one fateful day, I was approached by a man who I instantly knew was my soulmate. We were engaged within 10 weeks and married within 4 months. We now create our "beaded necklace" together and our book, I Am, I Think is our latest creation.