I love a good story and I feel like my journey has all been unfolding perfectly to bring me to my current place and I’m happy here! I look back and now suddenly, everything makes sense and connects.
A gap year from my teacher training took me to live in the New York Hamptons where I worked with some incredible kids with physical disabilities. The trip abroad empowered me and the kids inspired me to take another direction in my career and when I returned and graduated as a teacher, I took a job across the other side of England from where I was born to work in a SEN school. I’ve always loved being in the company of children and was drawn to people who were differently abled. This job was so exciting and so much fun!
This job didn’t exactly set me up to realise why a decade later I’d been struggling as a parent. I figured that my teaching days were going to stand me in good stead as I knew all about behaviour management. I was wrong! I’ve had so much unlearning and learning to do! You see, my two kids don’t respond well to traditional techniques used by well meaning parents and teachers globally, and for that I am grateful. This other way that they have directed me in is one that aligns with the brain development and emotional wellness of all humans. It’s based on compassion, meeting their needs, autonomy and respect. It’s taught me to be a better human and also how to identify my own needs and identity.
After emigrating as a family to Abu Dhabi in the UAE, I discovered that my daughter is in fact autistic. She’s nothing like the other autistic kids that I’ve known before, and I’ve learnt that although there are plenty of other kids just like her, no two humans are the same, autistic or not. I’ve been able to identify myself as an autistic individual and I now support others on this journey. There’s so much to learn about autism and it truly fascinates me.
But it’s not just autistic experience that fascinates me, I have other neurodiversity's including dyspraxia and ADD and I’m sure I’ve generously shared a mix of this with my son too. We’re quite a quirky family and we’ve found confidence in accepting ourselves just as we are and stepping outside the expectations of society.
My kids no longer go to school, in fact we follow no curriculum at all and that surprises people to know, since my husband is also a wonderful teacher. But that system doesn’t fit us as much as we tried. But supporting children, other than my own is still important to me it just now has a focus on well being and happiness over academic achievement and behaviour. Success comes easily to us when our needs are met, the other way round makes for a very difficult ride; one that I’ve experienced first hand.
I believe that that neurodivergence is a gift and that there is space for us all in this life to thrive. We are only disabled by our society and through raising awareness and sharing our stories we can make a difference. What do you need in order to thrive? This is my journey and I hope that you find value in what I share along the way.
I have a dream to share a mindfulness based approach to teaching and parenting to reduce anxiety for all.
I enjoy bringing people together, sharing stories, wisdom and compassion. I wouldn't be where I am today without the guidance of so many wonderful people around me. Finding the autistic community, self-identifying, being heard and held as well as the on going training that I do in mindfulness and neurodivergence has not only been healing and empowering me but it's given me a real place in this world. I feel more comfortable and focussed than ever before and I want to give back and pass this all on.
I support the emotional well-being of children and adults by raising awareness of neurodiversity and sharing EFT and simple mindfulness based tools and techniques that can really make a long term difference.