Helping Her Find Her Way Home

*Permission was granted to share this part of her story through my eyes.

I first met Whitney on 2/25/2020, a referral from one of my “Lifers” who has given me so much business I’ve had to tell her to slow her roll 🙂  Here’s what stood out to me regarding Whitney:

  • Adopted and never seeing how she belonged
  • PTSD due to infancy loss and so many puppy losses in the animal rescue world
  • Divorce & blended family
  • Mama of three feeling so overwhelmed: online schooling, founding a new rescue, & trying to feed ‘em all (human and dog alike)
  • Needing a time out to figure out what’s next
  • Avid dog rescue mom
  • Calls herself “The Feral One”
  • HUGE LOSS, BIGGER Heart
  • Former competitive skier
  • Addiction to rescue mode and nicotine
  • Wanting more for her children
  • Questioning how to keep living

Our first lessons included a lot of

  • Where do you want to belong?
  • How do you take better care of you?
  • What do you dream of each night?
  • How come you keep trying to do it all?
  • What does love look like and FEEL like?
  • Did they say that or do YOU say that?  “I’m all alone.”  
  • What do you do for fun?
  • Caring FOR YOU is Caring for YOUR KIDS
  • How do we create safe space?
  • Aren’t friends as family a good thing?

Whitney had been looking for her biological family for years, her spouse told me he’d looked every day for 8 months.  My other client bought her AncestryDNA to see if genetically she could find family that way.  And she did however she got overwhelmed by the whole complicated cousin tree and not having a ton of information about her biological family and only snippets of facts here and there.

One day I was sitting there listening to her talk and I asked – can I look at the AncestryDNA to see what I can find?  Can I call around on your behalf?  What stood out to me was no matter what I’d done to support her self confidence, empowerment, and learning about assertive communication, the heart of the matter was she wanted to know the story of why, why and how she came into this world.

She gave me free range to search however I wanted.  She was nervous about making those first calls to see, was this the woman?  Did they really want to know who she was?  I got tired of AncestryDNA and stepped back and thought- here in the revolution of Social Media let’s tackle Facebook and Classmates.com.  Within days I’d found her biological mother’s brother and was on the phone with her.  

Here’s what we both wrote simultaneously:  

September 14, 2021:  Today was one of the highlights of my career~ finding the biological mom of a client of mine.  She had been looking for her biological mom since she was around 18; she is in her 30s now.  I took on this project 8 days ago.  Today I got to tell her how excited her bio mom is to talk to her; that she had wanted an open adoption but that wasn’t really welcomed early on.  Hearing her tears of joy, the fears of not being wanted put to rest…my heart is bursting.  #counselor #parttimedetective #adoption #families #permissiongranted

Whitney: 

Literally, your life can change in an instant.

Today, mine did. In a spec of a second my life will NEVER be the same.

I never allowed myself to dream big because the thought of encountering denial was unbearable.

I belong.  I am wanted.  I am loved more than I ever even imagined.  Holy shit, this is really happening!!!  

My therapist found and connected with my biological Mom!!!

Our text exchanges included: 

Whitney: Yes!  We talked for almost 2 hours last night.  Cried together, laughed alot and I know healed a little bit of both of us on the inside.  You have given me a whole new life

Me: Do you want/need phone call?

Whitney: I’m feeling really good, a peace I have been hoping for my whole life.  Take the hour for yourself- in your famous words

It has been a true honor, to be a human doing what I do. ~Jasmine

Eight Years Later

September marks eight years since I’ve started my private practice counseling endeavor. I want to start by thanking all my past and present clients who have shared their lives with me! It is a honor and privilege to do what I do. Over these eight years my practice has gone from part time to full time, private pay to accepting insurance and every thing in between. I’ve been able to hire an administrative assistant, utilize Insight Medical Billing for billing purposes, and I’ve hosted support groups for grief, young women’s empowerment, vision boards, and most recently a trip to the Demolition Zone (a great way to release frustrations). My office have moved from Country Club Road to Charnelton Street in Eugene, Oregon. I’ve been able to work with a professional production company, Blazing Heart Productions to create a video to help promote the work I do. More recently I’ve honed in my practice to specialize in adolescents and have been providing Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy. Grateful to have stayed healthy during this pandemic so far and I have continued providing in person as well as telehealth sessions. Love that my office space offers enough room to stay socially distanced. With isolation as one of the major challenges of this pandemic, I find it even more essential to offer in person services for folks who feel comfortable to do that. As always, take good care. Jasmine

The Demolition Zone in Eugene, OR

Ignite Podcast

In January I got the idea that a podcast might be fun to do. This feels like less pressure to me then video and six months later I finally recorded my first one! It was much easier to do than I had thought and I had a couple clients inspire me to record a meditation as they both use those to decrease anxiety and ground themselves. I have one other meditation I want to record and then I think my third podcast I will cover how I use Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy (EMDR) in my practice since it is a newer technique I have been trained in that I’ve seen some really positive results from. I welcome my readers and listeners to submit topics they might like me to cover. Right now I think my goal is to do one podcast a week if I can. This might help me update my blog more as I can add written content as well as promote the podcast. As always I appreciate finding new ways to support my clients as we all continue to heal and process all we have been through this past year.

With Gratitude,

Jasmine

Now Providing EMDR

It has been awhile since I’ve updated this blog! I’ve so enjoyed opening my practice full time in 2020. This year has brought about may unexpected changes with COVID-19, protests, fires, and political strife. Many of my client have moved to teletherapy and we’ve all worked hard to digest this new way of living for now.

This past weekend I completed by basic training in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy. I’m very excited about being able to utilize this approach which is a very different style from the more common talk therapies. This will allow me to work with people who are wanting to do some deep healing of past traumas and negative self beliefs. It is most commonly used for those challenged by PTSD but also it can be very helpful in alleviating symptoms of anxiety and depression. I welcome questions about this new approach. Here is a short video that introduces EMDR.

While my practice is currently full right now, I do have a short waiting list that generally is about a month wait. With the holidays that may mean a little longer wait.

Please keep taking care of yourselves, and thank you to all who have entrusted me as your counselor.

Happy New Year

nye

As I reflect on 2017 I’m looking forward to what 2018 will bring.  I’m beyond honored to have welcomed new clients as well as continue to support some who have been with me since the start (September 2013 to be exact).  What I’ve noticed this year is a deeper understanding of the complexities of grief.  Grief has been one of my specialties – one of those topics I’ve always been comfortable thinking about and in my adult years have pursued looking at how to talk about when my own personal grief shook the very ground I was walking on.  I find the research on healing and trauma fascinating and continue to learn about the neuroscience behind this work (which I fell in love with as I completed my last stent in school).

This last year I put on my first Young Women’s Empowerment Class where I introduced gratitude jars, vision boards, and journaling as ways to pay attention to hopes and dreams, as well as barriers and challenges that get in the way of those very same hopes and dreams.  In February 2018 I’m putting on my first Young Women’s Retreat which will incorporate some of those same ideas however in a different setting~ at the coast in a cozy house where I find healing comes more naturally with the ocean air, the sound of the waves, the quiet, music, creations, and a whole lot of laughing.

So thank you, to everyone walking alongside me as we journey through this thing called life.

With Deep Gratitude,
Jasmine

 

If you can make the world a little better, then you have accomplished a great deal.

Summer is in full swing and things at Ignite are going well.  The Young Women’s Empowerment Class completed last month and they liked it so much we are going to continue monthly check ins!  I’m hoping there will be more interest in this class to start a new one this fall.  Here are our final vision boards: 18556764_973500899419846_3954842052511610983_o

I’ve welcomed some new clients recently who are looking for support as they transition out of unhealthy relationships, as well as some couples who are trying to find healthier ways to communicate.  Stress can impact our relationships, how we communicate, as well as how we make progress towards our goals.  Self-care is a must as we manage day to day responsibilities as well as find ways to address the grief and loss in our lives.

One of my favorite subjects is gratitude.  Finding ways to pay attention to what we have rather than what is missing can really make a difference in our frame of mind.  Gratitude jars were a hit in my class as well as many of my clients are tracking gratitude in their journals.   Right now I have a couple more spots open for new clients; I hope that if you or someone you know could benefit from counseling or a life coach that you will contact me!  17635441_925114810925122_5231406512144647996_o