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The bird stole my wings so now I must fall. Deeper down. Down deeper the rabbit hole calls. Slide into a wakeful peace…intrepid… Walls of water fall around me. I struggle my legs are lead weights. I scream, but only silence is released. Grasping for the light, fear chokes my effort to see. Reality. Hope. I will find you. I can see.~Dr. Alea Baron

During my adolescent years, I began the journey of exploring and expressing the depths of my inner thoughts and emotional experiences through poetry and sketching. My innate artistic abilities gave me the opportunity to be placed in Advanced Placement Studio Art where I was able to alleviate much of the confusion and pain resulting from my parents divorce. Although it was a deeply unsettling time, I was able to explore and discover my own authentic identity, values, and find fulfillment. The arts served as a bridge to my unexpressed and genuine emotions, which allowed me to explore what was meaningful.

These formative and introspective years shaped my sense of identity and natural empathic connection to humanity. I have always felt a deep sense of compassion and empathy for others that are struggling in some aspect of their lives. Throughout my life, I have spent a considerable amount of time attempting to repair the emotional damage I observed in my friends, family, and colleagues that was a result of prejudice due to race, social status or other inequalities. I take delight and feel great joy when those that I care for and feel connected to are fulfilled and happy. I derive the same sense of happiness when I am volunteering and helping others, knowing my efforts have touched or impacted another’s life in a constructive way.

The past may shape and establish one’s present experience or identity, but it does not define their future. I have spent extensive time counseling adolescents, families, and adults. Erika, a twenty-three year old rape counselor, suffered from anxiety and past sexual abuse. The essential goal of her treatment was to help Erika understand why she was reluctant to assert herself with her family and boyfriend without becoming paralyzed by fear. Working collaboratively, Erika and I explored her past relationships and her responses to emotional experiences around disappointment, anger, and helplessness. As Erika processed and gained perspective into feelings of vulnerability, she began to create new boundaries with her parents and boyfriend. She started making decisions that aligned with her values, which gave her a sense of well-being and confidence in her ability to make choices that were emotionally and psychologically healthy for her.

My aspirations as a consultant and life coach are to explore and examine each individual’s goals and to help facilitate the process in which they achieve them. To be part of this process that would help each individual not only achieve their goals, but to find meaning and passion imparts a profound sense of fulfillment in me.

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