MY JOURNEY TO AUTOIMMUNE REMISSION
My life has truly been a journey. I am hard-wired for achievement and for many years I worshiped at that alter. I reached every goal I set my sights on attaining, achieving great success in both the clinical and corporate worlds. On the clinical side, I have been a practicing psychologist and career counselor, and I taught psychology at a university. While this was a fulfilling career in many ways, it wasn’t satisfying enough in terms of achievement. So I jumped into corporate life and for the next 15 years, I held roles in sales, national training, and management for a Global Fortune 500 company. Yet while my inner Achiever was being fed, my inner Empath was suffering.
And what no one knew was that I had been suffering with very serious illness for 30 years. You see, by the time I was 44, I had been diagnosed with 7 autoimmune diseases including systemic lupus. I had endured many surgeries, hospitalizations and procedures, and I had too many doctors and prescriptions to count. My defining characteristic is perseverance: My motto has always been "obstacles fear me." I prided myself on pushing through any adversity. So I just keep pushing my way through illness after illness, living in fear of anyone finding out that I had a weakness in the form of health issues.
What I discovered the hard way is that if you don’t take care of your mind and body and soul, your body will shut you down for maintenance. And by 2014, my body was trying to shut me down permanently. Lupus was attacking my GI tract, my heart and lungs, even my DNA (which is terrifying because you can’t get a DNA transplant). I was completely disabled, I had to retire from corporate life, and I was convinced I would die soon. I was told I needed to start taking chemo and steroids for the rest of my life and I needed to accept the relentless progression that lupus was going to make through my body.
And do you know what happened next? I said, “To heck with that!” If there was a way out of the inevitable, I was going to find it. So started the next chapter of my life: I spent the next 5 years studying mind-body-spirit wellness and I successfully clawed my life back from the abyss. After 4 years of healing, I was ready to begin a new career. Which is when I was diagnosed with Stage 3 cancer. And the rug was once again yanked out from under me.
But I accepted the challenge and I am happy to say that at the beginning of 2020, I am free of both cancer and autoimmune disease. I don’t even have autoimmune antibodies, which is truly a miracle. And what I treasure today is very different from what I treasured in the past. I am truly grateful for my journey. Facing death has allowed me to truly blossom and release my gifts of service. During my illness, I obtained several life and health coaching certifications and I am now in my third and final career as an Authenticity & Wellbeing Coach, the magical career where my strengths and passion collide.
My mission is to help people reach greater levels of performance and wellness in their critical work and life roles through improved self awareness and self regulation, interdependent communication, unleashing their authenticity and improving their health and wellbeing. My passions include helping people find purpose, transform suffering into purpose, adopt a healing mentality, and achieve true mind-body-spirit wellness so that they can release their unique genius into the world. My journey has taught me that having mental, physical or spiritual illness will prevent you from becoming who you were created to be.
I have learned that there is something of a blindness in our society to the rich variety of human talents. I meet people every day who believe they have no special abilities or genius talents. Well, I am here to tell you, definitively, that you are unique among all people who have ever lived or ever will live. You have genius talents that are both easy to use and obvious to see if you only know where to look. You are, indeed, a very special snowflake. My passion and purpose is to help people achieve holistic wellness so that they are free to pursue their passion and their purpose - because the world craves each of our unique contributions.