(she/her/ia) [Pākehā, Ngāi Te Rangi, Ngāti Raukawa]
I was born in Pukekohe, but raised and went to school in the lower part of the South Island (Mataura and invercargill). My family-of-origin story and childhood experiences were shaped by events and contexts much like that of many of my clients. There are some good memories interspersed with multiple significant events that had long-lasting negative effects on my sense of self, my behaviours, and my beliefs about life. Over the years, my search for understanding as to why I thought, felt, and acted in the ways that I did (about and toward myself and others) led me to finally admitting I needed help to make sense of some seriously traumatic events from my past – not only from childhood. I will be forever grateful to the incredible counsellor/therapist who worked with me for several years, guided me through the ACC Sensitive Claims process and gently but firmly called me out when I tried to hide behind (ultimately self-defeating) avoidance tactics when things got hard!
In terms of my work history – I have worked in and out of the realm of healthcare since leaving high school, but have also spent many years in IT-related roles (mainly in manufacturing, logistics, and retail environments, but also working on local and regional healthcare system projects). Additionally, I have owned several small service businesses, and been an independent contractor across several industries. Like many people, I was lucky enough in my early twenties to have spent a couple of years backpacking and working in places such as Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, and England, along with non-work travel in Nepal, India and other countries.