The Wounded Healer
As a survivor of domestic violence with a badgered heart and esteem, I did not believe in people. From the age of fourteen to my late twenties, I learned not to trust in the intentions of others. I, however, loved hearing the stories of others and offering compassion and empathy for their experiences. Some say the broken-hearted are the most tender-hearted. In a weird way though, that part of myself, the one who always ventured into the experiences of others, also brought pain to my own sense of self.
How caring was I to take time for others while others could really care less about me? This distorted pattern of thinking, unfortunately, brought harm and sadness to my core. Over time, through life experiences, education, and a deeper perception of myself, I learned to turn that perception around. Now, I don’t see myself as an abandoned soul with no place to turn and nobody to trust. Now, I do and always move toward being that person that I had never believed existed.
After many years of caring for and nurturing my own broken spirit and sense of self, I returned to academia determined to obtain the education and training necessary to provide responsible, ethical, and professional spiritual care services to others. I held myself to very high standards because I was fully aware of the impact on others when delving into the core of their being; “Do as you will; but bring harm to none.” In 2009, there was no such concept as Spiritually Integrated Psychotherapy. That didn’t matter to me. My plan was to get an education and training in both fields of mental health and pastoral care. Then, from there, my plan was to somehow migrate the two. In my wholeness, I just knew that neither was exclusive to itself; they were always one.
I completed my BA in Psychology in 2012. I also minored in Philosophy (my personal favorite) and Religious Studies. In 2012, I registered for my theological studies at The Iliff School of Theology. Originally, my degree program was specifically in Pastoral Counseling. However, the more I learned about social injustice, social narratives, domination, privilege, entitlement, oppression, and life impacting topics such as these, I changed my degree program to the Master of Divinity with emphasis in Social Justice, Pastoral Care, and Women & Religion. In my theological studies, I found pure healing as a battered and broken petite, single, Hispanic mother. Why mention my stature and ethnicity? Because it mattered in my life experiences.
Through innate challenges when working on personal growth and self-development, I learned to find my identity and strengthen my spiritual and religious connections. I no longer experienced personal regret or torment for doubting or denying what I was taught as a child. I empowered myself with permission to re-create a new truth, a new perception of my own story, that allowed me to live wholly and confidently with deep feelings of spiritual and physical safety. The tools and skills that I learned through my endeavors is exactly what I aim to share as a Professional Spiritually Integrated Life Coach and Therapist.
You see, although I worked for many years on hearing my own life stories, I never considered the impact of my own spiritual and religious confusion. Instead, I carried my confusions like some secret part of myself that I could bury or oppress or just leave by the wayside. It was a private burden to not share my religious or spiritual confusion with others. By the end of it all, after 2 Clinical Pastoral Education units as a hospital Chaplain intern and one Certified Addiction Counselor training and internship, and 4 years later, it finally fell together for me – at least as much as it could. We never stop becoming or learning; we are always in the process of becoming.
That which I was searching for to give to others befell upon me through my education, life experiences, and training. I would not ask of you to do anything that I have not already done myself. It was like magic to discover that after 7 years in academia, the mental health and pastoral counseling fields were migrating into one powerful resource for the well-being of humanity. Now, talking about religion or spirituality in a clinical setting is no longer taboo or something to avoid. Spiritual Integration in the mental health industry is in its infancy, but it is as it should be. Spiritually Integrated Psychotherapy is mainstream, and it is about time!
As a compassionate and empathetic life coach and therapist, I will always be authentic and honest. This part of healing the self from mind to spirit is not an easy journey. There will be days of ups and downs. There will be days of motivation and procrastination. There will be happy days and there will be painful days. I can only promise to be supportive, encouraging, dependable, and empathetic to your healing process. With me as your companion, you will not be abandoned.
Does working with me as your life coach or therapist necessitate spiritually integrated conversations? Absolutely not. There is no special requirement or expectation. There is; however, an open door for those conversations if the need arises. I am an Ordained Minister and an educated and trained Pastoral Care Provider. In my space, there is always a safe space for these deeper conversations as they relate to your overall healing and well-being (or even your pain).
There is still so much more to learn together. I want to thank you in advance for taking the time to read my short and sweet introduction. You can learn more about the ethical standards I hold myself accountable to as well as my mission and philosophy on this website. There are also more details listed in the Mission/Ministry area of the site where I share more about my religious and spiritual journeys toward wholeness and connection with the Divine. Again, I would like to thank you and welcome you in advance for taking the time to learn more about me.
Welcome and Blessings!
Religious & Spiritual Background
I offer myself and my stories to inspire a sense of hope for any misconceptions that you are not worthy or have been abandoned.
I was raised in a pious home and learned from my grandmother how to pray and maintain faith; especially during challenging times. My grandmother and the family alter were the central hubs of safety and miracles in my family. As the eldest granddaughter and devoted student, I learned to pray and believe in miracles and protection for all whose names I could conjure. I could (and still may) swap and share miraculous stories that have been experienced by myself and family members over our lifetimes. The love and the power of the Divine was all that I had learned from my precious grandmother. Grandmother had never revealed to me the brutality that was possible through religious or cultural beliefs. Those hard lessons were learned as I sprung from the safety of my family circle into the world of society.
Pretty much on my own by the age of fourteen in the early 80’s, my world of physical and spiritual safety were tossed upside down by the dictations and cultures of others. Because I was a female, I was told and believed that I had no right to dream of doing anything beyond catering to my husband. Because I was a female, I was told and believed that my primary function was to stay home, be pure, and be a God-fearing and submissive mother. Because I was female, I was told that I had no right to make decisions for myself. Because I was Hispanic, I was told and believed that I was never good enough and was to be grateful for whatever was given to me by the generous and more powerful. Because I was petite in stature, I was told and believed that I could not do or accomplish anything – and that if I did, I was turning my back on God.
Until I was in my late twenties, I was told and believed that nobody gave a crap about me. Until I was in my late twenties, my spirit and sense of self were totally broken. Until I realized that I had turned away from the power source that was forever available to me, I had given up on believing in anything regarding miracles or protection. Until I was in my late twenties, did I sit down to pray:
My mission is to support your every intention of living life to the fullest and sharing proven strategies that empower you to discover your highest potential. Together, we can face and work with any barriers or fears that may be keeping you stuck from taking your first step toward what you truly desire. There is no need to put your hopes and dreams off any longer. There will be time, you will have the energy, and your personal power will thrive. Now is the time.
Building strong relationships in the heart of humanity is the mission of my service as a spiritual care life coach and therapist. I am pleased to welcome you into my life and am grateful for the experience.
My constant and consistent philosophy of care is to unconditionally accept those whom I encounter for exactly who they are; where they are. There was a time when I had expectations or made assumptions of where I thought people should be on a psychological, emotional, developmental, and physical level. This admission speaks very loudly and profoundly to my personal growth. Now, I have migrated into my philosophy of care, the acceptance and welcoming of others exactly where they are. I approach every encounter with an authentic curiosity to learn of and experience the life of others. I find wonder and beauty in every life, every experience, and every position. It is a true pleasure for me to get to know you. I am bound by my personal integrity and legal ethical standards to ensure that my every position and intention is to support you in living a life of fulfillment and joy and to feel whole in your person.
Code of Ethics
My Ministry is in the heart of people and all living creatures. I am a bleeding heart for all forms of life including the environment, animals, wildlife, our atmosphere, and the earth upon which we walk.
My teaching point always falls in line with The Golden Rule to do onto others as you would have done to you I am extremely mindful of my intentions. Intention is the defining point of core beliefs and values. If I believe that you are less than me, then my intention will be maintain that position.
I do not preach as a Life Coach or Therapist, but I cannot escape my innate beliefs and values that goodness is true and possible in the heirs of all living beings.
My Ministry is comprised of a culmination of many world traditions and wisdom teachings including Catholicism, Christianity, Curanderismo, Native American Spirituality, Hinduism, Religious Science (not the same as Scientology) Shamanism, Wicca, Paganism, and Buddhism.