What made you decide to become a mental health provider?
For as long as I can remember, I have always enjoyed working with people. I grew up volunteering in my community at churches, hospitals, and zoos. The experience that solidified my choice to become a clinician was a mission trip that I took to India in 2011. I spent three weeks working with orphaned girls and observing the effects of society on a stigmatized population. As a result of that experience, I grew to appreciate the value of psychological and spiritual well-being. My experiences, coupled with my natural desire to improve the lives of others, led me to the field of social work. As an LCSW, I have the ability to act as both a clinical guide and an advocate for my clients.
What are your areas of expertise?
I specialize primarily in the field of trauma. My goal is to support clients in a process of healing to live a more fulfilled life. I particularly enjoy working with adolescents and young adults, as well as families. I strive to help them find meaning and grow from their past experiences. My personal and professional experiences helped shape the type of clinician I am today. I have gone on several mission trips to India. While there, I worked with orphans in Chennai and young women who were sex trafficked in Mumbai. Hearing the stories of horrific abuse, rescue, and healing from the women and girls created an undeniable passion within myself to aid in the healing process of others. My experiences ultimately led me to seek out additional ways to address and treat individuals and families, especially those living with the anxiety and depression that often accompanies a traumatic past.
While in graduate school, I provided therapeutic services to adolescent girls who had experienced sexual abuse and/or were sex-trafficked. I gained a keen understanding of how trauma changes the brain and can affect every aspect of a person’s life. I loved working with and helping those in need. Observing the progress each client made throughout her personal healing process was also very rewarding. While living in Chicago, I continued to develop my passion and skills for providing trauma-informed care.
While living in the windy city, I worked daily with youth at a therapeutic day school. The majority of the youth that I worked with had extensive trauma histories; many lived in neighborhoods where community violence was a common occurrence. Most of the youth struggled to find meaningful relationships with their peers and families, but I developed a unique ability to connect with these individuals and their families. I provided them a caring and supportive environment.
My Skill Set and Beliefs
My training, personal traits, and experiences prepared me to address the anxiety, depression, and specific needs of high-risk populations, as well as individuals who may be struggling with the demands of everyday life. I am sensitive to the developmental level of my clients given my vast opportunities working with clients of all ages.
I find fulfillment in empowering my clients by working alongside them in a supportive and collaborative manner. In addition to providing trauma treatment services, my skill set allows me to work with a range of clientele. I provide treatment services for those who are coping with life transitions, societal stressors, relationship concerns, loss, and much more. My approach involves a combination of resiliency skill-building and personal exploration. Clients get the opportunity to discover meaning behind their behaviors and experiences. Furthermore, I believe in addressing a client as a whole person with unique values, beliefs, relationships, and talents, and not just as a set of symptoms. Most importantly, my desire for clients is to recognize that despite the pain they are experiencing, they are capable of living life as the best version of themselves.
What do you find most enjoyable about your job?
I enjoy getting to interact with such a wide range of individuals and believe human connection is so important. I love getting to create and support those connections and interactions with each client I work with.
What do you like to do in your free time?
Relaxation is very important to me. Reading, working out, traveling, and finding uncommon or unusual things to do in the city are experiences I genuinely enjoy. I also like to spend my time playing with my pet bird, Izzy.
What is your favorite quote?
“Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire”
This quote is so empowering; I really love it. This is true to me, especially at times when life throws curveballs!
Where would you like to travel to next?
I have a long list. However, I am most excited about traveling to the Rocky Mountains this winter to go skiing for a few days with my family.