I’ve felt an innate drive toward helping others. I would cart home stray and wounded animals; I would befriend the lonely kid hanging out on the swing set at the school playground, and the dejected teen who was ‘different’ from everyone else…in these people I discovered amazing depth and a beautiful soul; some even turned into lifelong friends. I was highly curious and aware of the emotions and feelings of those around me – I possessed an ability to sense at a deep level the internal emotional reality of others, and sometimes it was something I could not ignore, so strong was the compulsion to reach out and connect, to listen, and deliver the message that ‘you are not alone’.
Not possessing a clear picture of what I wanted to do with my life as a young adult, I struggled to find the ‘right fit’ for higher education; a particular career path – I was the proverbial ‘late bloomer’ in the education and career department.
in a rather short period of time, I educated myself, set my sights on creating a successful counselling practice which led – most recently – to expanding my services further to add Equine Edge to my business offerings.
Fast forward to present day: I’ve been in business for almost a decade, and I am now feeling the ‘itch’ to develop something new – something bold, creative, and unique that offers tremendous value to people. I’ve a deep and stirring desire to be of higher service to others; to somehow channel my professional expertise, honed intuition, natural gifts and talents, business acumen, and years of education to develop something new.
Reaching way back into my earlier life, I remember my inner world being emotionally chaotic; I was quirky, highly sensitive, and possessed a healthy sense of humour. In primary school my teachers found me frustrating, distracting, fidgety and challenging…. a downright nuisance! In 1st grade, much to my teachers’ dismay, I boldly directed the entire class to follow me out of the classroom because I did not like that particular lesson…and they followed! I was expelled…in grade 1! Needless to say, school was a struggle as I did not conform to the ‘average’ student profile. I excelled in subjects I found interesting and engaging, failed miserably at the ones I found boring and nonsensical.
I didn’t necessarily experience this as a negative; in fact, in my teen years, friends often made it clear they appreciated and liked me just the way I was…that was nice, but I did not understand my internal angst and disconnect with many aspects of my inner-self. I would go through bouts of dismal, grey and lonely times…the kind of lonely you feel even in a room full of your best friends. Not knowing how to describe these feelings and experiences in words, I slogged on in lonely sad silence.
Unlike many teens, my ‘rebellious’ years hit when I was in my late teens. I found my behavior to be one of ‘pushing back’ and there was no way in hell I was going to conform to someone else’s ideology of how I should live my life….parents! At 18, I moved out of my family home, found a cute bachelorette pad, partied like it was 1999, and lived life on the edge of young reckless adulthood.
In my early 20’s, I met the man who would be my husband; we had a whirlwind courtship; married a year later, and had our first child on our 10-month anniversary. Two years later, our second child arrived. At around this time, there were beginnings of a faint whisper of what I wanted to do with my life….education, travel the world….true longings of the soul. But with the responsibilities of parent and adulthood, I no longer allowed myself to dream beyond where I was for fear of never being able to attain what I seen as an impossible dream.
We moved north, bought an acreage and set up a new home. Once again, we settled into a routine and family life, and eventually I got a part time job as a way to meet new people. Our family grew and thrived. Out of the blue, I began to feel the sharp jab of sad dark emotional shadows from my youth scratching at the edge of my being; I was restless, often irritable, and questioned many aspects of myself – was this it? I loved being a wife and mother, but I felt like I was losing myself – who was I? Was there a ‘me’ in there…somewhere? Once again, I felt isolated, anxious and depressed.
During the early years of family life, we enjoyed our growing family, and decided to move up one more level of the ‘adulting’ ladder, and bought our first home. Exciting times. A few years later, my husband got a hankering to move away from our hometown and families – all that was familiar – I was reluctant at first, but came to love the idea. I began to see it as running towards something new – a way to bring excitement and adventure to our family life.
I had the answer to my internal dilemma…with the unwavering support of my husband and family, I decided to go back to school! I felt like a part of me – long dormant – had awakened…with much reflection, courage, renewed confidence and a solid sense of purpose, I began the journey of my higher education.
I decided to focus on a career in counselling, and while attending college, my confidence would surge(I am doing this!); then I would experience crippling bouts of self-doubt (what the hell am I doing?). I hung in there and completed my education within the span of a few years, and throughout the process, I’d learned a lot about myself: parenting, my marriage, and my self-concept.
My next logical step was to set up a private practice, and for the next few years, I enjoyed growing as a professional, entrepreneur and businesswoman.
By 2012, I’d established a thriving private practice, and once again, a familiar burn crept in. Beginning in 2014, I achieved another level of higher education and expertise, and expanded my practice to include a form of horse-assisted therapy, and Equine Edge was born. For the second time in my life, I felt a deep satisfaction; a level of transformative growth, renewed confidence, and personal and professional empowerment. Much to my astonishment, I’d created something truly amazing!
Today, as I sit and reflect upon my life’s journey, from a kid struggling in sad lonely, anxious silence to a discouraged young wife and mother to a successful business owner and entrepreneur, I could look back and now understand that I struggled with depression and anxiety; I was burdened with the weight of not living my life’s purpose nor pursuing my dreams. I realized the critical importance of making the bold courageous move to go back to school later in life, and start a career I loved….I saved myself…I was home.
At this point in my life, I feel a profound and burning desire to help people who may feel lost, alone, hurting; perhaps struggling to find a sense of purpose or direction. I know what it feels like to struggle – flail and flop – struggle some more. If you dig down and connect with, and see your worth and value as a person; if you work hard and don’t give up on yourself even though the journey may seem like a long daunting road….I’m here to tell you, if I can do it, so can you.