I’ve found no greater purpose than helping patients restore or build a new life through treating mental illness. I find immense joy in seeing someone restored to their family and friends, helping a depressed person feel again, or helping an anxious person find peace. The number one rule in medicine is “First, do no harm,” and while I agree with that, I have a second rule that I feel is no less important – that is, “do some good.” As your mental health provider, I will seek to “do some good” in your life to help you experience lasting healing and hope.
My goal is to provide the medical support you need in order for the true you to return and thrive. After assessing your condition, I strive to get you to a better spot, then build on that progress little by little over time. I find that most patients get the full benefit of treatment at lower than recommended doses of medication, keeping in mind that the true you will not come to life if you’re over medicated.
My appointment time with you is my highest priority. I listen intently to every word, caring for you as an individual made in the image of God. By hearing and understanding your experience, I’ll seek to figure out what changes are necessary in order to make your medications better support the life you want. Whether you’re dealing with depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, PTSD, or some other mental health struggle, I am here to help to the best of my ability.
Some patients don’t want a “label,” but for my purposes you need one and for your purposes you want it to be the right one. The medications I prescribe are specific to a condition. Most of the time, if patients aren’t benefitting from their medication, either the dose is wrong, or the provider is treating the wrong condition. Many patients who come to me have given up on getting better because “the meds” don’t work, but they don’t realize that the real problem is the meds were designed to treat a condition they don’t have. I’ll help you determine the correct diagnosis and find the right prescription and dosage to promote a vibrant life.
Please don’t hesitate to give me a call and come in for a risk-free initial session.
I do look forward to meeting you and would be honored to be part of your healing journey.
I am a Licensed Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner (ARNP) and Board Certified Family Nurse Practitioner. I obtained my Master’s of Nursing: Family Nurse Practitioner from the University of South Carolina, Columbia in 1997 and my Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Millikin University in Decatur, Illinois in 1988.
At age seventeen I joined the Army to become a combat medic. A platoon leader saw my potential and my heart, and encouraged me to become a nurse. I liked the idea of knowing and doing more for patients, so I agreed. Nursing school was an incredible growth experience, and showed me a deeper level of connecting and understanding people than I had known or experienced.
I met Christ while I was an ICU nurse. My conversion gave me an unshakable peace and a love for my patients that led me to really want to connect with and serve them. I then went on to become a nurse practitioner. I liked the thought of having a lifelong connection with patients. I wanted to be part of people’s family and not just treat them when they were sick; I wanted to see they had the health they needed to live the life they wanted to live.
After a devastating snowboarding accident, I transitioned out of the Army. Once I had recovered enough to begin working again, I got a job at a Community Health Clinic treating a vast array of patients with varying degrees of mental illness. Just by listening, connecting, and trying to understand what their days were like, I discovered I had a gift and passion for treating mental illness as well as a heart for these patients. It is my great joy to rely on God’s day-to-day sustaining strength as I tap into these gifts and passion to serve my patients well.
I am a father of four, with three adult children and an adopted teen with special needs. I love the outdoors and enjoy hiking and sea kayaking when I can get there. My dog loves to go with me and even has her own perch. I also love to work on cars, appliances, and do home improvement and wood working projects. Recently I have started doing intarsia (3D mosaics in wood) to release my inner artist.
Do you look in the mirror and wonder where you went, or struggle to do something you like to do? Have you been equipped by your counselor with awesome advice and great coping strategies, but either don’t have the energy to use them or they keep failing? If so, you’re probably in the realm of clinical depression or anxiety. I call it clinical because it’s so severe it’s beyond your ability to control even with counseling – it needs medical intervention.
The problem is that depression and anxiety (happiness, too) are mediated by neurotransmitters, and if those are too low, healing and coping can become impossible. The typical anti-depressant just lets you store more neurotransmitters. When the tank fills up, it’s like the lights come on and your coping skills suddenly work again. There is no pill for happiness, but when your neurotransmitters are at an appropriate level, happiness becomes a mood option you can choose, and you can re-engage with yourself and your life.
Do you have nightmares about traumatic events? If so, did you know that there is a medication that is very effective for making them go away? There is, and it isn’t even a mental health medication. It is something developed and used for blood pressure (it’s still safe to take if you don’t have high blood pressure). Probably the only thing worse than waking up to the same nightmare repeatedly is that the nightmare is causing you so much fear that you avoid going to sleep and dread trying. There is little as critical to healing and wellness as sleep, and those nightmares deserve treatment.
In my professional experience, no other common condition can be as devastating to someone’s personhood as having untreated bipolar disorder. It can take your peace, rest, relationships, positivity, memory, stability, work, and hope, all while causing chaos in your life. To make it worse, it takes an average of ten years for a person with bipolar disorder to get the correct diagnosis – usually ten years of medications not working or making things worse.
Do you feel as if you have depression, anxiety, attention deficit disorder, and insomnia all rolled into one? Does it feel like your brain never rests? Have you explained how you feel a thousand times, and no one is getting it? Are you tired of repeatedly working for three to four months to get your ducks in a row, only to have them scattered again, usually with crushing consequences? If you answered “yes” to any of these, it could be bipolar, even if you don’t have the high highs or low lows.
Do you feel like you’re not in control of your life because your agenda is often interrupted or overruled by intrusive thoughts or urges that cause you anxiety and distress? Or do you feel that you must complete certain mental or behavioral acts in a certain way before you can achieve completeness? These are signs of OCD, and its impact on a person’s life runs the range of minor annoyance like checking your front door a couple of times to major problems, because no matter what you do, or how often, or how well, you never feel it’s done, and you never feel good enough. OCD often needs medication to get better.
Few conditions cause as much controversy as ADD/ADHD, especially in adults. Yet research shows that ADHD is one of the most common disorders in children and adolescents, and that it not only often persists into adulthood, but many adults develop it as adults. The symptoms and common experiences of ADD/ADHD are too many to list here. They are unfortunately so commonly known that their impact on people’s lives is often minimized. As a result, untreated children grow up believing they aren’t as smart as their classmates and they’re always in trouble at school and home because it’s impossible for them to manage tasks and often their impulses. Untreated adults find that they can’t manage the tasks, deadlines, or the sheer number of details related to many occupations, or that they too often say exactly what they think, especially when stressed. I treat ADD/ADHD in both children and adults because treatment doesn’t just help memory, it can unlock the true potential of you or your child.
Appointments: Scheduling options can be arranged by calling: 206-388-3929. Same day appointments are available.
Availability (by office location):
Fees: I offer a Risk-Free Initial Session for Individuals, Couples and Groups looking to pursue counseling with me. Please note that there is a fee for the Risk-Free Initial Session as it is a clinical hour and reimbursable to most insurance companies, but if you choose not to reschedule and continue therapy after the initial session the entire fee for the session will be waived. For ongoing treatment the full fee per session is required at the time of service. For more information regarding standard session fees, please contact me directly at email@example.com or 206-388-3929.
Insurance: As a Master of Nursing, Certified Specialist, Family Nurse Practitioner, and an Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner, a majority of insurance companies will reimburse for a portion of my services (as an Out of Network Provider). Please consult with your insurance provider as to whether they specifically cover individuals, couples and families.
Receipts/Statements: In the event you require a printed or digital receipt, I will provide receipts for personal use, insurance reimbursement, Flex Spending Accounts (FSA), and Health Savings Accounts (HSA).
Payment options: Cash, Check, or Credit Card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, & American Express). A fee of up to 3.7% plus $0.15 per transaction will be added for credit card payments.