Coach. Speaker. Author.
My mission is to reach caregivers who need real tools that they can rely for the emotional fortitude required on a daily basis as they fight daily to support their loved ones.
For many years I struggled because I didn’t take care of my own needs adequately.
My wake-up call was when I ended up in a wheelchair, overweight, constantly fighting illness, infections, arthritis, and other stress-induced physical and mental malfunctions.
I was on a happy pill, but every time I expressed frustration about my husband’s delusions or other erratic behavior, he would ask me if I’d had my pill yet today.
I was rock bottom, and ready to call it quits. I’d attempted suicide several years earlier, but when our youngest son intervened, I realized that I could never do that to my children, and in the ensuing years I tried to stay strong, but inside I was just going through the motions.
It’s tough to be a physical therapy provider from a wheelchair, so after three months of trying to help other people learn to walk again and being unable to walk myself, I took drastic action.
I signed up for health coaching school, resigned to being stuck in a wheelchair but determined to continue providing for my husband and our children.
Before my school even started, I employed a nutrition coach and was out of my wheelchair within a week. Within a month I walked without a limp at all, and today I can run two miles without any pain at all!
But the dietary changes were only a start. Somehow I had to figure out how to nip the emotional eating in the bud, and feel hope again.
I was tired of walking on eggshells and feeling anxious ahead of time, in case my husband had a hair-brained idea and insisted I go along with it.
I received advanced life coach training in addition to my health coaching certificate and began to help all my friends and family who would let me. The tools I’ve learned are life-changing! They work for everyone who is willing to be coachable and work hard to implement new thought patterns and beliefs.
That’s basically all it takes. No pills, shakes, exercise routines, endless affirmations, or positive thinking when all hell is breaking loose and you just want to be grumpy!
Emotional health isn’t about being happy all the time or putting on a brave face or counting your blessings. It’s about being able to experience all the emotions we humans have without dousing our sorrows in addictive behaviors in order to avoid anxiety.
Today my husband is still a pain. By his account, so am I. But we’re learning not to judge, shame, or belittle each other. We’re learning to be curious instead of quick to blame and creative when we feel stuck.
My husband still has delusions. Every day. I just love him anyway, and take care of my emotional needs. He works hard to take care of his, but needs a lot of help and attention.
I want so badly to help other caregivers learn what I’ve learned, to hopefully keep their marriages and partnerships together, their families united, and themselves healthy, emotionally and in all the other ways.
Joe and I have a great life, we have two dogs, Spunkie and Meggie. We have 3 boys, that are grown and out being men. We have a new baby granddaughter, and we even get to babysit sometimes! So fun.
I’m learning to cook for two, writing and running again, which came to a halt for a time when I ended up in a wheelchair from emotional eating and weight gain.
I’m passionate about helping you heal, and loving your life again.