How My Career Found Me!
As an only child, and the daughter of a social worker, I swore there would never be another one in the family as I learned more about my mother’s work. This changed when I was around 10 years old, when I heard her speaking about a family who had no heat and that the cold air was coming up through the floorboards. To make things worse, they had a child around 5 years old that had developed pneumonia. I listened to the story of the landlord who would make no repairs to the home and it tore at my heart. I thought about this, spoke up, (imagine that) and plead my case. My parents agreed that since my bedroom had hardwood floors, and we had heat, that we could pick up the carpet (back then it was only tacked down) and take it back to the family! So my impending social work career began! The road was long and hard. I returned to college with a child in tow, long after I should have already had a degree. I told myself that it did not matter how long the journey would take. It ended at East Carolina University in 2004. I opened my practice in 2007 and am still serving Wake and surrounding counties.
My love of animals began very young at MacNair’s Stables in Raleigh. Back then it was a daycare. I rode horses, swam, and was outside every day. Over the years I had many animals, even several horses. The imprint this time in my life made on me, is still present today.
Several years ago, I began to hear about something called Equine Assisted Psychotherapy (EAP). This sounded like what I had heard about out West a long time ago, where wild mustangs were paired with at-risk, troubled kids, along with the successes with both the humans as well as the animals. EAP uses tame horses, but all have different personalities that appear during the sessions. I am now certified in the Equine-Assisted Growth and Learning Association model and have watched it spread through the United States and other countries.
I enjoy my job when meeting with clients in the office, but I am happiest outside, with animals. To be able to marry social work, with my love of animals, is a match made in heaven!