How I went from the confused and defeated clinician to helping thousands of SLPs create assessment and treatment plans that actually work.
Before there was ASD from the Inside Out...there was a confused and defeated therapist.
Frustrated about lack of progress.
Questioning my therapy approaches.
Wondering if these kids would ever "make it" in the real world despite knowing that I had their absolute best interest at heart.
Ice Cream, Imagination, and a Bad Case of Imposter Syndrome
It was not a walk in the park to get here.
While I was thoroughly trained in my first job by not one, but three incredible mentors, and my transition from trainee to clinician was fast-paced and smooth...
The road to finding myself as a therapist was not fast or smooth.
I was hit with a major case of imposter syndrome. When I would see the silhouette of a supervisor peeking through the observation window on my door...being a therapist felt harder and scarier than it should. There were a lot of evening ice cream sessions. I dreamed of better days ahead.
My imagination brought me from there to here. I would say from A to Z, but it wasn't that linear or simple. It was more like "over the river and through the woods..."
When I started to rethink my assessment process and redesign my treatment sessions....
I revived my therapy.
It wasn't as easy as 1...2...3
I was ready to make a difference but it wasn't going to be easy.
One of my clients was a 3 year old boy who was nonverbal. Did I mention our sessions were 3 hours long?!
I tried anything and everything (and I mean everything) to connect with this boy.
It was time for me to submit a video for all of the clinical supervisors to review. I was terrified.
I took a video of him dancing on the table and jumping off into my arms. He was the most connected and engaged I'd ever seen him. I was sure these supervisors had never seen him like this. I was so excited for them to see it.
By the way, if you didn't see this coming, a little word to the wise: Do not submit a video to your supervisors in which you are encouraging a toddler to stand and jump off of furniture. Lesson learned.
But I also learned that sometimes it takes wildly unconventional ideas to truly connect with a child.
I was on a mission.
I discovered that in order to make a difference, not only in a child's communication skills, but in his life, I needed to think in a new way.
So I did a "brain dump" of everything I knew about working with kids on the spectrum. And I learned:
Language and social skills are not the only areas that SLPs should be assessing
Intrinsic motivation is a key element that is often overlooked
A child's learning starts with human connection
And after I had too many "ah ha" moments to count...
I created an action plan that helped me morph into confident therapist ready to change the world...one kid at a time.
And the best part is...
I have the honor of helping therapists just like you.
With one action plan.
Start diving INSIDE OUT
A Little About Me
Mom to two always adorable and mostly sweet little boys, Connor (3) and Tucker (1)
Founder of Pediatric Therapy Playhouse, a multidisciplinary clinic in Los Angeles
Contributor to the American Speech Language Hearing Association magazine
Viral video creator
Board member-elect of the California Speech Language Hearing Association
Hometown is Carmel, California
Have had my mini-horse, Fritz, since I was 9 years old