When I'm not busy therapizing in Evanston, I'm in Andersonville parenting three daughters alongside my husband. I try to walk the walk by showing up for my family and friends as best I can while also making time for me. Being in a long-term relationship and parenting are both things that can consume us easily and each year, it's clearer how important it is to strive for those things that bring life balance. For me, those things include volunteering, exercising, reading, bike rides, walks, crafts, singing, camping, and spending time laughing with people I love.
I was born in Lima, Peru, though I mostly grew up in the States. I frequently visited Lima for extended periods of time and Spanish was the language spoken in my home. As the eldest child, I am very familiar with the feeling of straddling two worlds, even two lives, and carrying a lot of others' expectations and responsibility (talk about people pleasing).
As a two-time Northwestern graduate, I am also familiar with perfectionism and the pressure of high expectations/demands in a competitive environment. That experience of going from being a big fish in a little pond in high school to a little fish in a big pond in college is a common one and it often catches us unprepared!
(I like to think that) My personality is warm and engaging and I'm sarcastic, funny, and matter-of-fact. It's important to me to help you feel comfortable, safe, and accepted in what can be an awkward and weird situation for many. Ideally, my office is a place where you can open up and examine aspects of yourself and aspects of those who you love, even tough ones that you may have historically avoided thinking about. We examine your past to understand the foundation and origins of the problems you are experiencing while also looking at what's happening now in your day-to-day that we can change. By looking at the past and present together, we can come up with solutions that are more than just a Band-aid.
That said, please know this work takes time. It could be 6-8 weeks before you realize that therapy is "doing anything" for you. In addition, it's not uncommon when starting therapy to feel worse before feeling better. So, sorry to break it to you but you won't walk out of my office after three visits with a neat little checklist of action items to tick off, "tips and tricks," or steps to follow that will miraculously solve all of your problems. No such thing exists and a therapist's job isn't to tell you what to do.
My job is to help guide you to finding the answers that best work for you, the answers that are already inside you even though you may have a hard time believing that (they're there, buried under layers of history and BS). To uncover them, patience and commitment are part of the deal as is the courage and readiness to look at the painful and ugly things (about yourself, about those you love). It can be uncomfortable to sit with that for a bit but if you have the will, we can do some great work together.
Clients have told me I've helped them understand themselves better, be more authentic, and make more constructive choices. I often hear, "I heard your voice in my head and ...," or "I thought about what we talked about last week and ..." as clients describe how they're making shifts in their lives. When I hear feedback like that, I know I'm doing my job.
* If you aren't interested in spending this kind of time to make some broader changes, therapy might not be what you're looking for (or at least not at this time). If directive, specific-goal-oriented support is what you're seeking, you might want to consider looking into life coaching instead. A nice run-down of the differences between coaching and psychotherapy can be found here. Know your options to best get the help you need to achieve your particular goals at this time.