I'm all about Truth Talk,
so let's dive right in...
Statistics predicted I would end up dead, in jail, or homeless by the time I entered adulthood. 😳 But that's not how it went down... 😏
The bravest thing I’ve ever done is turn extreme abuse, eating disorders, and suicidal thoughts into fuel for my passion + purpose in life. 😰→😤→💪
I ended up alive, free, healthy + happy, with a college degree, touching the lives over 4 million young people in 33 countries. #grateful 🙌
These days... I show teens (and the adults who care about them) how to balance their relationship ecosystems so they can launch into adulthood feeling confident in their ability to function in the world + fulfill their purpose + live peacefully while remaining true to themselves.
When I was a teenager,
I dreamed of becoming a psychologist.
I wanted to fix my family.
I wanted to fix my friends’ families. Actually, every family... if possible.
Then something weird happened.
I was recruited to study Music Education at the University of Redlands. I accepted. I figured I could always get another degree in Psychology later and then start helping families “for real”! 🤔
While I was busting my butt studying music education and coaching middle + high school drumlines on the side...
I stopped caring about becoming an official psychologist.
I was tired of waiting for someone with special letters after their name to judge me as “good enough” to help people.
I opened a youth performing arts organization (Teen Pulse).
60 kids showed up to the first rehearsal.
I taught over 900 students by age 25.
I composed + arranged over 50 music scores.
My students performed for over 60,000 people.
In addition to completing my degree in music education, I tirelessly studied leadership, the psychology of teams, child development, healing from childhood trauma, and, well... how to survive in this world as a super-sensitive person without taking everything so personally.
Then something even weirder happened…
No matter where I was teaching, more + more students would start showing up to rehearsal early + staying late… they’d randomly ask things like:
"When did you know you were gay?"
"How do I get my
to stop bullying me?"
"Can my parents make
me get an abortion?"
"I want to do what you do.
What did you major in?"
"Have you ever
thought about suicide?"
"Do you know any
"I quit using drugs, but how do I
get out of the drug biz alive?"
"How do I move out after
graduating like you did?"
(Mind you, I was a music teacher... not a psychologist or guidance counselor. Somehow, they just felt safe to talk to me about… EVERYTHING.)
I naturally fell into being a mentor for teens who used music as the vehicle to teach them about and help them with life.
It turned out, holistically supporting them at the root of their souls changed their whole approach to music, life, and school, which improved their grades, relationships, and music performance by default. Bonus!
Teachers started noticing at public events and on YouTube and would send me messages asking for guidance.
Parents noticed significant changes at home and started asking me to teach them how to connect with their kids like I did.
Everything snowballed into hosting teen leadership retreats, launching parent coaching programs, and creating a curriculum now used by over 13,500 teachers in all 50 US states and 33 countries! What?!
Looking back, all of this was incredible and I'm amazed and honored to have such a cool life.
When it was all happening during my 20's, though, I was still drowning in the pain, patterns, and nuclear fallout of a traumatic childhood.
Statistically, it was a miracle I was alive, had a college degree, and felt driven toward a world-changing purpose. But that didn't mean I believed I was worthy, knew how to have healthy relationships, or trusted anything in the world.
And it caught up to me.
My students would out-perform drumlines 5 divisions higher than them and I'd celebrate them, still never satisfied with my work.
I had books upon books full of students' notes and letters thanking me for changing their lives – and I still wouldn't ask for enough money to take care of myself. In fact, I went into debt paying for all the things my students needed in the beginning. "Let me pay for all your things AND give you all my time AND my talent AND my energy..."
I was trying to earn external validation of my worth and I couldn't even see that it was a problem.
I truly believed the world just sucked.
And that I sucked even more.
But people didn't know on the outside. They'd tell me how inspiring I was, how they wished they "had it together" as much as I did when they were my age.
I felt like a fraud who had no one to turn to.
Because the world needed + expected me to be strong, inspiring, and motivating.
No matter how painful it got, I stuck with what I knew and found my incredibly empathic self in work, personal, and family relationships that drained my soul till I was just a shell of a person.
And that's when it happened.
My physical body started to shut down. I had accrued more life-altering + life-threatening illnesses than I could count on one hand.
Some days, I had to teach lying on the floor.
One day, I blacked out and woke up looking at grass moving above my head because a campus security guard had thrown me over his shoulder to carry me to the office where an ambulance picked me up.
I went to so many doctors + had tests that left my body radioactive so I couldn't be within 6 feet of my students for a day.
No one had answers.
Most told me I was too young to have health problems (apparently they'd never heard of ACEs).
Western Medicine gave up on me. It turned out to be the best thing ever!
Desperate to live + still believing I was on Earth for a reason, I took a deep-dive into natural healing.
I learned about nutrition and auyerveda, became certified in reiki, took energy medicine classes, shamanism classes, learned about Feng Shui, found out I love cooking + have a really green thumb, studied Medical Intuition with Dr. Mona Lisa Schultz, Caroline Myss, and C. Norm Sheally, learned about the enneagram, essential oils, and magnet therapy, and dove deep into healing crystals.
Have you ever heard "there's no such thing as an overnight success"? That it takes years of intentional work to prepare for that overnight "big break"?
That's how it was with my healing.
One day, I went into sudden remission. And... it took me years of study and practice to get there.
The catalyst that day had NOTHING to do with diet, environmental toxins, 5G, etc. The shift was at the soul level.
Just minutes after reiki-ing my food and thanking God for showing me what I need to know to heal, I was shown 3 words that changed my whole mindset:
"Love Your Illness."
It was such a soul shift, I laughed. People say "fight cancer" + "f*ck cancer." All I needed to do was love it. Thank it. Receive its message and learn from it.
That was the first day in months that I was able to make it through the whole day without napping. AND, I stood on my feet for over 10 hours that day. AND, I worked a booth at an event with over 30,000 people... AS A HIGHLY SENSITIVE PERSON!
This got me started down the path of "If all I need to do is love my physical dis-ease to heal from it, all I need to is love my mental + emotional dis-ease to heal from that!"
I had a LONG list and it took me a few years to get through. I've heard that it takes 1 month for every year you've been ill to heal. This turned out to be pretty accurate for my emotional healing.
The more I learned about my true nature and began to respect and honor it – which was definitely a process and didn't happen overnight – the more energy drains I was able to plug up. The more energy drains I plugged, the more Good I was able to live in!
I quit my teaching job – loved the kids, but the system was insanely toxic and I couldn't set the example for my students to grow up to be bullied into giving beyond their means by their bosses.
I quit my marriage – we went through the conscious uncoupling process (highly recommend it) and came to honor that our "nature" was incompatible and unsustainable.
I took a serious inventory of my projects, my physical belongings, and my people.
Now, you're probably thinking this is where the "happily ever after" goes.
Sorry to disappoint you.
This is actually where things got unbearable.
With all those drains plugged up and my health in order, my soul had room to process all the deeply buried pain I'd been trying to "busy" myself out of having to deal with for over a decade.
I went through a year of not knowing what was real, feeling triggered-af, and uncovering all sorts of old beliefs I didn't even know 2-year-old, 6-year-old, and 12-year-old me had picked up.
THAT is what finally got me to this other side where I'm content – and even HAPPY! – with my life exactly as it was, is, and will be (most days).
Now, I'm beyond blessed, knowing I've been through so much... so I could heal so much... so I can help so much!
It's my greatest honor to pass on the goodness and help amazing people like you get to the root of your pain so you can heal your soul and LOVE LIFE!
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