I was completely and utterly devastated, traumatised and humiliated when my first husband left our marriage after fifteen years, without any warning. Worst of all, I didn’t understand what I had done wrong or how I could have prevented the situation. At this point, because my self-esteem was very low, my pride held me back from letting on how fatally wounded I was. I tried to put a brave face on things – but I lost my way, my hope and my will to live.
Looking back to all the unabated stress I was under, it’s not really surprising that fourteen months later I was diagnosed with cancer.
However, the shock of this diagnosis made me quickly realise that life was indeed precious, and my children needed me more than ever before. It was time I got a grip and dragged myself back from the abyss!
As soon as I was sufficiently recovered from the surgery, I booked an appointment with a counsellor. But I was very taken aback when the first thing she did was look me straight in the eye and ask me if I wanted to die? I couldn’t believe it. I didn’t know I had any choice; I thought the disease would decide that outcome. Not so. She told me, if I was serious about getting well, I had a lot of work to do!
First Steps to Recovery
I learned that all my emotional turmoil – not just from the diagnosis – but from the relentless exposure to stress beforehand, had resulted in my immune system breaking down to the point where cancer could occur. I discovered that my past pattern was to ignore and suppress lots of emotions – because I simply didn’t have the skills to deal with them any other way. Therefore, I had accumulated unhealthy coping methods to deal with my problems. The whole situation had dramatically compounded when my life suddenly veered out of control with the breakdown of the marriage.
Believe it or not, it was actually very uplifting work understanding and clearing this emotional debris. Within a relatively short time I started feeling stronger and a whole lot more hopeful about the future. My body started to heal. Slowly, working with my counsellor every step of the way, and reinforcing new life-affirming skills and behaviours, I regained my full health.
In essence: my sick spirit was healed through this journey back to my Real Self. I discovered a whole new way of living and entered a completely new paradigm of self-fulfillment and balance. The true bonus, though, was sustaining a level of happiness that I had never previously thought possible!
Finding my Passion
I was so excited, all I wanted to do was share this ‘magic’ I had discovered. I trained to become a counsellor.
In my early years as a counsellor I naturally tended to attract a lot people that had been diagnosed with cancer. However, there came a point when I realised that the time had come to stop working exclusively with sick people. Above all, I now wanted to connect with people before they became ill – those who were at risk from the stress they were under.
This became the platform and inspiration to start to work from a preventative perspective. I travelled extensively to Australia, USA, Canada, UK, Wales, and South America attending wonderful workshops. My focus was on anything that extended my knowledge and understanding. I also studied group facilitation in Auckland in order to develop and facilitate ‘Discovering Balance’ Workshops, which I ran in Ponsonby during the 1990s.
Concurrently my private life had blossomed, and I was also now remarried to the ‘love of my life’, Mark, and together we were blending our real life Brady Bunch of five children. What a ride that was! In 2001 the time arrived when we were able to pursue a long held dream to live in Italy for a couple of years. Upon our return to New Zealand, I resumed my counselling practice and wrote my first book, ‘Cancer: Don’t buy its Terror Tactics’. Following the professional advice of a trusted friend, I set up an online presence. Along with the very uplifting feedback I received from my book, I was often asked if I would consider writing a blueprint for ‘well people’ utilising the same principles, but with a particular focus on a preventative approach to dealing with stress.
And Here I am Now…
I absolutely LOVE my job as a Counsellor/Therapist/Coach. Through this work I believe I am fulfilling my life purpose. Everything I do has a basis in care and compassion and giving my clients the absolutely best assistance that I am capable of. I have been in Private Practice for over twenty-five years and want to continue developing my influence and abilities for as long as I am physically able.
A Quick Checklist
- Do you feel overworked, anxious, and unhappy with your current situation?
- Do you feel like you never have time enough for you?
- Do you feel like you never have enough time to spend with those you love?
- Are you using drugs or alcohol to help you relax?
- Are you having trouble sleeping?
- Are under too much financial pressure?
- Are your fearful about the future?
- Do you worry you will become sick from all the stress you are under?
- Do you seriously want / need to change your situation?
- Do you want to feel happy and fulfilled?
If the answer is yes to any of these questions, I feel very confident that I could be of help to you. You can get in touch with me here