There is a quote by Bill Bennot that says, “how we walk with the broken speaks louder than how we walk with the great.” I experienced my qualifiers for that brokenness early in my life through my own mental health struggles, including anorexia and alcohol abuse. A registered nurse was instrumental in guiding me along the path toward recovery and how she and others walked with me spoke loudly into my life. As a result, I studied nursing at Texas Christian University and incorporated an independent study program focused on psychiatric nursing. Upon graduating with my Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing in 1996, I became a registered nurse.
I have been on staff at inpatient and outpatient psychiatric facilities, worked in the capacity of charge nurse, and done assessments for patients that come to the local emergency rooms with mental health issues. In addition, I am a speaker and writer that combines my professional and personal experiences to inspire and inform others about the importance of caring for our own mental health and that of our community.
In 2016, I co-founded Mosaics of Mercy and now serve as Executive Director. I host our Hope Pieced Together podcast that is released weekly to provide education and hope to this community and even beyond those boundaries. I believe passionately in helping others connect to resources, education, and stories of hope to help them in their struggle around mental health. Families have to know where to start to get on a path toward healing and they need a non-judgemental, neutral place to guide them in that effort.
My most important role in life is being a wife to Chris, my husband for over 25 years, and mom to two amazing kiddos, Alison and Clay. I am so blessed to have each of them share their own hearts and talents to support Mosaics of Mercy.
For more of my story read here.
When I was 15 years old I went to treatment for anorexia and alcoholism. I also had struggles with anxiety, severe depression, and obsessive compulsive disorder. I was broken and felt beyond hope that all the pieces could be put back together. In surrendering that I could not manage my life, God was able to come in and do a new work in me. Since I was admitted to treatment 27 years ago, I have remained in recovery for my eating disorder and alcoholism. However, this journey has been a continual process of submitting those broken pieces of my heart and allowing God to mold them and heal them in ways that I can’t seem to do myself. The process has been messy at times and the path has not always been clear. However, I get glimpses along the voyage of the beautiful way that God has woven my broken pieces together and I am in awe of His magnificent plans. I have to hold onto these glimpses when times get dark and confusing again to remember that He is with me every step of the way and working all things together for good. I feel a calling and a responsibility to share my experience, strength, and hope to others in those same broken places that I have been in. I want to walk along side them and bring a light when they can’t seem to find their own. I have a passion to educate those that have not been to those dark places so they can be part of the solution as well.
A year ago, I was connected to a group that had formed called Heart Tablet. This is a group of people who have walked their own journey of brokenness. They are authentic in sharing their struggles. Sometimes they themselves have had an addiction or mental illness, and other times it has been someone that they love. Both avenues have their own set of brokenness in their hearts. Just like I see a need to be a light to people and educate the community, Heart Tablet does as well. They have a passion to come along side others to walk and encourage those on this journey. Part of that process is through the making of mosaic hearts and giving them to people who are struggling with addictions or mental illness or have a loved one that is. There is a beauty and a healing in the making of these hearts that we give out. The process is a tangible parallel to the journey I mentioned above, where it gets messy and you can’t always see how it is all going to come together, but in the end there is beauty in the brokenness. Giving these hearts to others is a concrete way to show others that they are not alone in this process and there is hope. It opens up a door to provide community and education to people about the hope that is out there and that they are not alone. These hearts are so symbolic of the road that I have walked and I get such joy in knowing that in participating I can share my experience, strength, and hope with others. Through my participation I also gain a community that walks with me as I continue to find my way along my own path. What a blessing to be apart of Heart Tablet. It is another piece that God has placed in the mosaic of my own heart that is beautiful and purposeful and something that I could never have put together myself.