My journey to massage therapy...
I’ve always been fascinated by the complexity of the human body and the natural world. When I first went to college, I wanted to be a doctor and majored in Biology. As I fulfilled my pre-med requirements, I began to feel that the cutthroat competition and detached approach of conventional medical education seemed counter to my understanding of healing. My experience as a pre-med student felt hollow and left me disillusioned about the medical profession.
I took a step back and instead focused on environmental studies, where the foundation of every course was that “everything is connected.” I earned Bachelors and Masters degrees, specializing in marine ecosystem conservation and eventually worked for the National Marine Protected Areas Center. I was drawn to this work because it was both inclusive and comprehensive; Managing areas of the ocean requires consideration of biological, oceanographic, and socioeconomic aspects, rather than making decisions solely based on a single concern. It is crucial to look at the whole ecosystem, including all of the influencing factors, to foster long-term sustainability.
Although I enjoyed my work in “ecosystem-based management,” the stress of developing public policy within a complex bureaucracy began to take a toll on my personal health. I suffered debilitating migraine headaches, which I discounted as a side effect of working hard. However, I yearned for a job where being in tune with your own body is valued and one in which I could make an immediate and lasting difference for individuals. I thought about a career in massage therapy frequently.
My career ideas continued to evolve with the birth of my daughter. I had a difficult pregnancy and life-threatening complications postpartum. My priorities changed. My thoughts kept returning to massage therapy as a career. I wanted to connect with people in a tactile, direct, and real way.
I am drawn to massage therapy for many of the same reasons I was drawn to marine ecosystem conservation – it is a treatment that is inclusive and comprehensive in its approach rather than piecemeal or symptom-based. Not only does massage ease pain, it also helps connect people to their own bodies - physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Massage intrigues me because the therapist must consider the whole person in order to help the client. I love working as a Massage Therapist and I am extremely grateful to be on this journey.
“Everything is connected... no one thing can change by itself.“ --Paul Hawken