M. A., LPC
On a bright, fresh, hot and sunny day in August of 2001, a History professor kindly asked each student to stand up and announce what we were going to be when we grew up. I boldly stood up and said, "I will probably be a sex therapist...or maybe an event coordinator...or a roadie!" I am an only child, I do not mind being the center of attention.
I have become a therapist, but that is not for short of trying each of the other professions mentioned. I've attended 100+ concerts and attended/hosted several kickass parties.
I was born and raised in the lovely, and now slightly overcrowded, Fort Worth, Texas, by a registered nurse and a pipe fitter. Unfortunately they, like many, divorced when I was in elementary school. I gained an awesome stepdad along the way, which was not always smooth sailing. But I am proud to say that today he and I have a great relationship. My grandparents and several childhood friends' families also took in the likes of taking care of me, so they deserve props as well.
I grew up on the lake which allowed me to grow up in an adult oriented, weird and rather eclectic group of individuals. Our lake home was our gorgeous backdrop, often laced with many colorful people, heavy partying, all the while, great music filled our soundtrack.
After graduate school, I immediately married a military man, and moved my "only child" self (sorry mom and dad) to the beautiful state of Georgia. I made several life long friends there and was introduced to military living: which means your marriage, your life belongs to them. As a military spouse I endured ten deployments, and the untimely deaths of several brave soldiers whose lives ended too early.
Our next stop was the great state of North Carolina. There I briefly worked with a sex therapist in Raleigh, and spent the majority of my work on Fort Bragg which is where I witnessed the most valuable and humbling counseling experiences to date. I had the pleasure of working with Warrior Transition Battalion soldiers who were there to heal from illness, wounds, and injuries. In front of my eyes, soldiers would transform from disgruntled and hopeless men and women to future forward, humbled individuals.
My proudest moments have come from cheering on the wheelchair basketball team, to normalizing and inspiring excitement in the soldiers transitioning to the full utilization of a prosthetic. As a Special Forces military spouse, I learned to grip onto a certain naivety in order to continue living a "normal" life. But in saturating myself on base, I grew a deeper love and appreciation for the men and women who gladly serve to protect us and our country.
Somewhere between those grueling deployments and the birth of my one and only badass child, came the crumbling of my marriage. I am a strong advocate for marriage and for trying to maintain an intact family, but for my story, that became unhealthy and unsafe. I survived that hot mess with my family at my back and my best friends by my side, who, by the way, are as hot and strong as Charlie's Angels!
After a year of living solo and working full time with little to no unpaid help with my toddler and dog, Willie Nelson, I answered my parents' prayers and hastily packed up to move home. Despite working in a high paid and highly satisfactory job, I came to the realization that no amount of money was going to give me the help I need while being a single mom. I need a village, and now I have one.
So here I am. Some days I feel defeated, and on other days I feel like a rising phoenix from the ashes ready to slay the world and provide free hugs.
Everyday is a new day to begin, reinvent, to brighten someone's day, to love, to create, to better, and to hope.
Therapeutically speaking, I believe creating a healthy relationship is key. Creating a balance between work, and friends and family, self-care, (to name a few) create a healthy mind and a healthy space in which one might thrive. Many times our thoughts are the culprit of our unease or unhappiness. So I say, tame those Negative Nancy or Negative Norm thoughts. Being thankful and in the moment are just as vital as water and food. I often think, "I have legs. Go for a run!" Relationships, although challenging at times, are our life lines. We are humans meant to feel, support and connect with others.
Beth, the wonderful owner of the Beth Lewis Therapy Group, is a colleague and friend of mine. She once said, "Fallon, I love that you see the beauty in everyone." I like that.
I look forward to meeting you.