I went to massage school at the Colorado School of Healing Arts in Lakewood, Colorado. I received my 680 hour massage therapy certification in December 2000 and my 1,000 certification in December 2003, which included the Oncology Massage certification program. I have additional training in reiki, lymphatic massage, and rehabilitative massage after breast cancer treatments.
I chose this field because I missed having direct patient contact when I moved into the administrative area of healthcare. During that time, I was regularly receiving massage to help with muscle tension and stress, and I finally realized that being a massage therapist would be a way to work with people and make a positive difference in people’s lives.
I’ve had my own practice, Touch of Health Massage Therapy, since January 2001. My office is at 3460 S. Sherman St., #201, in Englewood. I joined Medicine Hands in 2004 (it was then called Oncology Massage Associates) after completing the Oncology Massage program, and I knew that working with cancer patients was something I wanted to do on a regular basis.
I most enjoy being a massage therapist because I know I am helping people. It is very rewarding to be able to relieve a person’s stress or pain, with the highest compliment being “I feel like myself again.”
The most important things I feel in healing touch therapy in assisting patients and/or caregivers are to create a compassionate, non-judgmental, healing space for them to be and to work with a loving heart.
Most favorite patient story: A client asked me to work on her mother who had lost all of her hair from chemotherapy. She told me that her mother was very self-conscious about being seen without her wig and that she wouldn’t take it off for her massage. During the session, the mother asked that I work on her neck as it had been bothering her. As I was massaging it, I bumped the bottom of her wig a couple times, making it move up a little, and she would immediately pull it back down. She said that she knew she should just take her wig off so I could work more effectively, but proceeded to tell me about her feelings of discomfort about not having any hair, etc. I then told her about my experience of having been “scalped” in a car accident, which meant I had no hair on the top of my head for a long time until it healed and my hair grew back, and that I understood her situation. After a few moments of silence, she reached up and took off her wig and asked that I massage her scalp as well while I was at it! It was hard for me to keep my composure as I experienced a profound meant-to-be moment. This wonderful lady and the connection we made that day is one of the reasons I decided to go into Oncology Massage.
I am proudest of my ability to establish a comfort level and rapport with people, allowing them to fully be with how they’re feeling at that moment.
When not working I enjoy spending time with my husband Dillon, our cats Raja and Willie, my family and friends. I am happiest when I’m out in Mother Nature, especially at our old rustic log cabin or any place where I can be hiking to cross-country skiing to watching a sunrise or sunset. I love to laugh and have fun, which I think is a very important part of being and staying healthy.
Quote: Laughter is the best medicine.