Originally an East Coaster, I was born and raised in upstate NY. My mother is also an occupational therapist so OT has always been a part of my life. As a child growing up in the outskirts of Syracuse, surrounded by rolling hills and farmland, my appreciation for nature was planted and just grew with time. Eventually, my curiosity about the West Coast led me to Western Washington. The natural beauty of this state made me feel right at home, so I grew roots and settled in.
My professional interest was in neurology so I focused my training and specialized in the functions and development of the brain. A requirement for working in neurology is to incorporate the body. Knowing how the brain and body work together is essential for successful treatments. Now, I teach parents to see their child’s brain by watching their child’s body.
The one place a child’s body flourishes is outside. Kids thrive when able to explore their natural environment, whether that be a backyard, neighborhood, or park. When outside, the physical restrictions are not in place the way they are indoors. The unpredictable sights, sounds, sensations, smells, and surfaces allow all senses to be alert and firing signals to the brain in an organized, predictable manner. After seeing the positive effects that nature provides to children, I knew I had to spread the word all about this therapeutic experience.
There are many benefits to being an outdoor OT, but another motivation for starting kidsView is that I get to work outside. Time and time again, I would find myself thinking about how much faster I could reach my client’s goals if I could bring our sessions outside. Time restrictions, environmental factors, and administration would so often limit these opportunities. With two young children myself, my drive to provide as many outdoor experiences as possible for my and all children became impossible to ignore. From this passion came kidsView. Now I can enjoy the outdoors and provide opportunities for kids to enjoy the outdoors with me.
My professional and personal goal is to catch the children slipping through the cracks and provide the necessary skills for both academic and social success. I am hoping to help kids and parents thrive instead of trying to just get through the day. Thriving means something different to everyone, whether that be getting through the morning routine without a struggle, connecting deeper with your child, or helping your child sleep each night. Each child is unique and presents with unique struggles, making each assessment and treatment individualized. When a child is provided specific skills to enhance their strengths and overcome barriers, everything else is affected including sleep, self-esteem, and compassion.