'When the path reveals itself, follow it" Cheryl Strayed
Like so many of us, my life has had many twists and turns. After dancing professionally for several years and imagining myself remaining on that path for a long time, I switched gears and decided to pursue other academic and career interests. After ten years of clinical practice in the mental health field (while simultaneously teaching ballet), I realized that I needed to shift away from my work as a psychotherapist and follow my passion for teaching and dance. Little did I know that this realization would propel me back to graduate school, reignite my performance career, and push me to new discoveries as a choreographer and educator. During graduate school I was introduced to somatic practices and my world was forever changed. Somatic practices offered me a framework for exploring the body-mind connection and has continued to reveal the potential healing properties of dance and movement in performance and in life. This framework created a natural connection between my previous work as a psychotherapist and my evolving curiosities as a teacher and artist. While my career in higher education over the past 15 years has been filled with peaks and valleys, it has offered me a space to explore the limitless possibilities of somatics in terms of personal growth and development. From these explorations, three simple, but powerful principles emerged: Move. Connect. Transform. These words capture what I have come to value and share with my students and clients as I encourage them to forge their own unique path with resiliency and curiosity. The photo above was taken in Pocatello, Idaho where I lived for 4 years. I walked this path almost every day and the beautiful image is a reminder to myself to embrace the moment!