Amy is an Italian- and Irish-American, white, cis-gender woman, always-aspiring-to-be- justice-doing, queer, tarot-card-pulling art witch and half-assed-Buddhist who also happens to be a therapist. A professional artist, teacher and mentor of art and artists for almost twenty years before becoming a Registered Art Therapist and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Amy hopes to collaborate with you on burning down all that is no longer serving you in order to create fertile soil for new growth. Her work honors your full humanity and dignity and aims to be life-affirming, life-giving, and sustaining. Through an intuitive integration of somatic, art, and narrative therapies, Amy conjures curiosity, creativity, and possibility in the work she does helping others. “I am not the master, I am the midwife,” Amy says of her work. “I have tools and tricks and can tell you when to breathe and when to push, but it’s your baby!”
Amy’s work is centered on transformation and change, honoring people’s inherent wisdom and lived experience. “Problems are a protest, for or against something,” Amy says, carrying on the lineage of her narrative teachers, Michael White, Jill Freedman and Gene Combs. “Our work is to articulate what the problems are showing up to help you with and head in that direction.” Problems act as directional arrows, and tell us where there is work to do, but the work you will do with Amy will not be problem-centered. Rather, you will learn what stories you have been conditioned to tell about the things that have happened and are happening in your life–to recognize the influence of systems and cultural and familial power on how your life is storied in order to articulate, gather, and live out alternative, life-sustaining preferred stories. Amy is proud to say that she brings her full, authentic self to the work (which may involve some swearing...OK, who are we kidding? It will definitely involve some swearing!!) and she hopes you will too (bring your full, authentic self, not swear–unless you want to) .
Amy’s work is also attachment- and trauma-informed and embodied. She is in her advanced and final year of training towards becoming a Somatic Experiencing Practitioner and is trained in EMDR. Her work is not “Pollyanna,” simply trying to cover over a bad story with a new, preferred one–but rather deep, somatic, generative work that attunes to, cares for, and heals the wounds that persist in creating suffering in our lives. Amy’s work is truly affirming, rooted in the idea that unconditional love for ourselves, when combined with our innate creativity and knowing, is the strongest healing power we have. Amy is also staunchly anti-pathologizing, working inside of her office and out to transform the ways that we see and talk about the things that get called mental illness. It is essential, if you want to work with Amy, that you are down to let go of labels and deconstruct diagnosis in favor of meanings and stories that are particular to you and support unconditional self-love, healing, and the freedom to be just as you are.
Do you have to make art or be an artist to work with Amy? No! Amy’s work takes many forms. Bring your curiosity and humanity and the rest will unfold.