Specializing in working with queer, neurodivergent women and gender-expansive professionals
Return to what matters. Create a life built for you.
Sylva, North Carolina
Hi, I’m Sarah!
Most of my clients come
to me with some of the following questions:
“What the fuck am I doing with my life? Why is nothing working, even when I’m giving it all I’ve got? Is the life I want for me even possible?”
Full disclosure: I’ve asked myself these questions MANY times (and I still do). Am I happy that these questions exist? Not really. And I also believe that these questions are essential for getting us un-stuck and creating (actual, effective) changes in our lives.
In order for you to work with me, I believe that it is important that you know a little bit about me and my story. I know all about NOT being true to myself – I did that for a long fucking time (and it still sneaks in there on some of the days where my value of authenticity gets clouded by stress or other painful experiences). I became an expert at avoiding vulnerability and anything “messy” that I couldn’t shove into a box, stuff down, ignore, or cover up. I knew how to make myself look great on the outside by being at the top of my class, engaging in a vibrant social life, putting on a great “happy face”, and participating in numerous extracurricular activities- but I had no idea how to cope with what I called “anxiety” and “depression.”
And then, some shit happened
I was raped, and it turned my world upside down for a long time. I was desperate for someone to hear me out and help me heal. When I found a therapist I clicked with, it changed everything. It was really fucking hard, and at times, I wondered if I was changing at all. But I kept showing up, week after week, talking about what was really going on for me, and things started to change.
And as it turns out, trauma was not the only thing that was kicking my ass. I was later diagnosed with ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) as an adult, which pretty much exploded my world. All these years, I was told that I was anxious and depressed, only to find out that this diagnosis made WAY more sense for me than anything I had ever encountered. It explained everything about me- my chatterbox brain, frequent emotional sucker punches, bursts of energy and subsequent crashes, zoning out when I’m bored, not being able to write notes efficiently the way my other colleagues could…….
This diagnosis challenged me to reconcile with how I was living my life, in a way I never had to before.
I imagine it like this: I’ve got a brain with an engine that can take on NASCAR but a body that moves about as fast as an old-school station wagon. I’ve spent most of my life using my brain as my guiding force- after all, it can be pretty magical and has helped me achieve a lot. However, especially after getting my ADHD diagnosis, it has become painfully (emphasis on pain) obvious that I can’t keep doing this because I will burn myself out- physically, mentally, and emotionally. I’ve had to slow the fuck down- one of my least favorite things I can imagine. And in slowing down- I’ve learned a few things.
A Few Things My Own Therapy Has Taught Me (So Far):
My emotions, thoughts, and needs are real, valid, and exist for a reason- even if other people don’t believe my internal experiences.
I have been both a victim of harmful people and systems, and I have also been a participant with harmful people and systems.
My idea of doing what matters has changed and will continue to change across my life because what matters to me changes as I learn more about myself.
I have given way too much power to my mind (which says I don’t need to slow down for food, rest, connection, or anything else) and not paid enough attention to my body.
Self-compassion is not equivalent to enabling or self-indulgence, and self-compassion can include acts of kindness and acts of fierceness.
I am now un-training and un-learning several decades worth of self-neglect, and I am also finding out that the flip-side of self-neglect is responsibility.
Am I saying that I’ve figured myself out? Absolutely fucking not! Do I still go back to things that don’t serve me? Sure do (read: perfectionism, self-criticism, over-working, shutting down, not taking care of myself when I get overwhelmed, defensiveness about my privilege). Do I cope with everything perfectly because I’m a therapist and know all the tools? HA! Nope. (Which, for the record, I find pretty hysterical, given the irony there). There are days where “my eyes mist over with the tragic tears of a lifetime of failures” (thank you Hocus Pocus 2!). Point being, I’m a human being who’s been through some shit, and I’ve also been in your shoes of looking for someone who could help me heal.
And for anyone who wants to know- when I’m not being a therapist, I’m getting into a shitload of random shenanigans. This includes (but as always, is not limited to): naps (duh), any variation of being outdoors (hiking, camping, walking, lounging in the sun), playing with our neighbor’s cat (who has taken up residence in our home), finding a new horror movie to watch, figuring out how to ride my motorcycle, saving memes from Facebook (over 2,000 and counting), searching for a new recipe to try, attempting to find a new hobby, or going down a million rabbit holes on the internet about music, movies, or food.
1294 Savannah Drive, Suite 3, Sylva, NC 28779