Expertise

EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing)
Native American Culture, Transracial Adoption, and Acculturation Issues
A Healthy Mind, Body and Spirit Connection

EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing)

I’ve completed the Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) Basic Training, and am very excited to be working toward completion of becoming a Certified EMDR Provider. This certification requires a higher level of training, i.e., additional consultation and supervision with an EMDR Certified and Approved Provider and Facilitator, as well as completing specialized Continuing Education Units in EMDR. Currently, however, I am up and running, and am accepting new clients who wish to begin the EMDR process.

EMDR is a psychotherapeutic modality that is evidenced-based and noted for significant success in the treatment of Posttraumatic Stress disorder (PTSD). EMDR can also an effective tool in the treatment of other psychiatric and mental health issues, such as Depression and Anxiety.

In the late 1980s, Dr. Francine Shapiro pioneered the concept of utilizing eye movement effecting, positively, levels of disturbance and associated trauma. Over the past nearly 30 years, EMDR has been increasingly recognized as a chosen form of treatment for PTSD by such agencies and organizations as:

American Psychiatric Association (APA)
Department of Veteran Affairs (VA)
Department of Defense (DOD)
International Society of Traumatic Stress Studies.

EMDR is an innovative treatment option that utilizes the client’s own neural pathways (chemical channels), accessing both the right and the left hemisphere in the brain, where memories are stored, in such a way as to “go back” into traumatic and disturbing memories, and to reprocess them from the current, adult perspective the client has now, as opposed to the perspective of the past of a child, adolescent, or younger adult.

The EMDR process typically takes a fraction of the time to “heal” trauma of the past compared to traditional forms of “talk therapy,” and is a very empowering mode of treatment, that allows for the client to, in effect, “heal” themselves, under the facilitation and supervision of a trained EMDR provider.

Native American Culture, Transracial Adoption, and Acculturation Issues

I have worked with local bands of Southern California Native Americans, first in the capacity of an MSW intern, and then, after receiving my Master in Social Work from San Diego State University 1999, as a social worker for Child Protective Services with the County of San Diego. Additionally, I, myself, have Native American heritage. As an Indian baby born before 1978, when the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) came into being, I have an intimate knowledge and a highly personal understanding of the impact of being Native American, but raised white within a white culture. I have struggled all these years to connect to my “roots,” and have experienced difficulties, as I may “look” like a Native American physically, but I think and feel like a white person. I, too, understand what it is to be an “apple,” i.e., white on the inside, red on the outside, and how hurtful it can be to lose your true self. Let’s take the journey together.

A Healthy Mind, Body and Spirit Connection

I have struggled, off and on, for much of my life, with weight and associated health issues. I have tried nearly every diet known to man, and some, rather unorthodox. I am familiar with Weight Watchers, Nutrisystem, Jenny Craig, Opti-Fast, and, finally, weight loss surgery, most specifically, gastric bypass surgery.

I understand the impact that extra weight can have on one’s life, socially, economically, behaviorally, medically, and even in professional ways. I also understand what it is to be diagnosed with multiple health issues, i.e., as the doctors call it, comorbidity, such as Type II Diabetes, High Blood Pressure, Asthma, bone and joint issues and diseases, COPD, and, I believe my personal understanding of many of these issues makes me an empathetic and kind listener. Rather than just saying, “I understand how you feel…” I actually DO understand, and indeed, know how you feel.

During my personal journey, I’ve become convinced of a mind and body connection, and work daily on achieving “balance” in all aspects of my life. My physical health is tied into my emotional and mental health, and I find it impossible to separate these states of health from each other. I’ve lost nearly 100 pounds from Roux en Y Gastric Bypass Surgery in June 2013, and now strive to be active, utilizing yoga, swimming, weight training, cross training, cardio, hiking, and, my absolute favorite, cycling in the past! The past nearly four years have shown me that health and fitness is a daily focus, and some days are more successful than others. I’ve maintained my good health, with the exception of continued injuries to my right knee, which has proven to be a source of frustration and occasional hopelessness. I do recognize that a healthy mind, body, and spirit requires an ongoing commitment, so I work on keeping motivated and positive, and am eager to join you on your own personal journey towards emotional, physical and mental health.