Thoughts on life and growth.

The reason I call this new thing Wildflower Counseling Services is I believe that people can grow in any circumstances, even the hardest and harshest.  So imagine you’re a flower.  Or a tree.  I like thinking of myself as an evergreen–like a pine tree high atop Mt. Charleston, outside of Las Vegas, where I grew up.  Whatever you like to picture yourself as, think of the many things you’d need to thrive–sun, rain, soil, nutrients, and the occasional weeding out of harmful elements.

When you can picture yourself like this it is easy to draw parallels to your own life.  What soil have you grown in?  What nutrients or sun and rain might you be missing?  What nasty weeds or harsh conditions have hampered your growth?  What substances, habits, or people have you relied on for getting through that you realize have become more harmful than helpful?

When we look at our lives with a growth mindset–that no circumstances or environment can ever fully hinder our own development, and we can determine our own path to a new, better way of living, then we are free to become who we were always supposed to be.

Who are you meant to be?  What has hindered your growth?  Grief and loss from death, divorce, or other major life events can knock us on our asses sometimes.  Slipping into dependence on substances, habits, or relationships can postpone our development, or set us back farther than we ever imagined.

But nothing–not rain and hail or weeds or concrete and asphalt–can ever fully hinder our ability to grow and even thrive.  If we find the right support, the right sun and rain and love and care.

I’m a widower.  I’m a child of divorce.  I have known brokenness in my family.  I am more than acquainted with confusion and disillusionment–even in a faith tradition that once was a comfort–and I know that substances do not fill the void or mend the cracks.  I understand depression and anxiety more than I really care to, and I know what it is to wake up and not know how to get up and out of bed and moving through the day–even though you must, even though others depend on you.  I know substances provide a brief respite from pain, but in the end harm far more than they help.  I have worked with all sorts of people on the edge of something–homelessness or runaway, incarceration or unemployment, addiction and dependence, or just plain losing your shit over the accumulation of life’s daily challenges.

The good news here is that in addition to being a licensed therapist and an experienced addictions counselor, I’m also stronger for these experiences, wiser from the journey.  It would be an honor to walk alongside you on yours, and help you find a way through.

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