It is my privilege to help my clients understand and deal with whatever is on their plate. I am continually surprised by how, in the midst of all of this, people who are sick and those who support them are frequently able to strengthen their relationships, get their health care needs met and live meaningful fulfilling lives. I simply can’t imagine doing anything more personally rewarding than this!
I named my business The First Step because I believe life is a series of steps – and that by being willing to take those steps, we find the strength to continue on in whatever we choose to pursue.
Originally I created The First Step to help men and women who were dealing with relationship struggles, empty nest syndrome, and work/life balance issues. I had the honor of helping my clients transform those very challenging situations step by step into a life that was more aligned with their needs.
From my training and certification as a Life Coach through the Institute for Life Coach Training, I learned about how to facilitate others so that they could hear themselves think through what they really needed and make that happen.
I attended Thomas M. Cooley Law School and have been a licensed attorney for almost 30 years, and had a private general practice following graduation. Law school gave me many tools, including helping me recognize the importance of getting the facts straight, noticing details, and asking clear focused questions in an organized way.
I was a trial attorney with Michigan Health and Hospital Association for approximately five years. I was the first attorney they hired to represent hospitals in unemployment compensation matters and represented over 140 hospitals throughout the state of Michigan. What causes employees to quit or become discharged is nothing short of fascinating and I learned how hospitals work from the inside out as a result of this work.
Through all of this experience, I’ve developed a wealth of connections, resources, tools, and just plain know-how on getting the best possible results from the medical system.
In case you’re curious, here’s a bit more about me:
Over 20 years ago, my husband was diagnosed with a brain tumor at the age of 36. Living through that experience has shaped my life in countless ways. Communicating clearly with his providers because he didn’t have the ability to do that himself was just one of the many skills I developed. Our children were 2 and 6 when he passed away and I raised them by myself. They are now in their 20’s and I love seeing them evolve and grow.
I’ve developed many strategies dealing with my own health challenges, including back pain and insomnia. I continue to use the Patient Power Process myself to make informed choices about my healthcare as my situation changes. I’ve also helped many friends and family members deal with chronic situations ranging from depression to rheumatoid arthritis. In addition, I’ve been a support person to several people dealing with more serious illnesses.
When I’m not working, you can usually find me hanging out at home reading, cooking, enjoying my animals or practicing yoga. I am very grateful for my many blessings and enjoy the simple things like taking a walk, browsing through the bookstore or a great cup of coffee.