At the age of four, I told my Grandmother I wanted to be a massage therapist and my fate was sealed. It was like I made the biggest pinky-promise to myself and as I grew up I was always dreaming of the day I'd be able to pursue my passion.
As a kid, I'd squeeze myself behind family members to push on their shoulders while they sat on the couch. I could always tell when they were feeling tense and I wanted to help. I occasionally received massage as a teen, trying to manage my own stress and 'reset' my body. My first attempt to study massage therapy happened just before turning 18- I was ready to start my massage career and figured I'd work everything else out along the way, but it wasn't yet an option for me then. I drifted through college anxiously and with ever-changing goals of studying psychology, culinary arts, architecture, graphic design, interior design, event planning, journalism, environmental science, etc. There was something about each study that didn't sit right with me though, whether it was feeling intimidated and selfish to let my creativity shine, or that the work would be too heavy when I needed to feel light, or too light when I needed to feel like I was doing something meaningful.
After working my way through four years of college without much aim, the pressure to receive a degree that I would never enjoy pursuing no longer meant anything to me, and I made my way to Texas where I would start on something more promising. Austin became home instantly- having been born in Oregon and feeling completely disconnected growing up in Florida for 15 years, it was exactly what I needed to start my new chapter. I hit the ground running and within my first month here in 2014, I was attending Massage School. All of a sudden, my "One day.." dream was becoming so real, and from there my whole world turned on it's head.
In learning massage therapy I feel like my inner-child has resurfaced and just opened a huge can of sparkly, awesome worms. There is so much to discover and learn, and the lifelong learning aspect reassures me that I'll never have to settle for feeling stagnant. More than anything, I love working with people who yearn to feel good and it is such an honor to share that space and time people make for themselves to feel better and more fulfilled. I love the idea of creating long-term wellness and happiness through each session, encouraging people to feel comfortable in their skin and love themselves without judgment, embrace their wants, needs and the vulnerability that is so often dismissed in daily life. I also love to reassure everyone that taking care of yourself is not only unselfish, but better enables us to take care of the people we love.
Many of my largest strides in self-growth and actualization are due to receiving massage. It has helped me to better recover from trauma, and the long-term feelings of mental and emotional balance and well-being have been immense. I spent most of my childhood and adolescent years trying to overcome a dooming peak of depression and anxiety but, despite constant efforts to be positive and create a fulfilling existence, I was beginning to feel as if I'd never find my way out. I can finally say I've made it to the other side and I feel better equipped than ever to deal with any personal or outisde negativity. I am especially grateful for all of my experiences these days, especially those negative in nature. It is because of those experiences that I have such a strong yearning to help make each day feel more hopeful and empowering for those I work with. We all get a little lost sometimes but happiness, whatever that means for you, is never ever too far away. Often times, it's closer than we even know.