Rosemary was my first baby, and was an honor to mother. She was present through many of my life's important and also most challenging times. Rosemary was a very sickly puppy and through it all, she was spectacular. She survived 8 years of constant vet visits, ailments, surgery and medications and never complained. She was (and is) pure sweetness and love.
In 2010 I had to make a speedy and unexpected decision for euthanasia, when Rosie's leg broke from undiagnosed bone cancer. Her death came at a particularly trying time in my life (job loss, divorce, a human death) and felt like "the last straw". It was devastating and difficult to process her loss and I sank into a deep depression. I have used my own journey back into the light, to inform the tools I teach in my pet loss grief support work.
Rosemary's gift was hidden in the trauma of her passing. After taking time to actively mourn her loss and evaluate my life at that time, I found myself questioning my purpose in this world. Every morning upon waking I would ask myself, "What is it, that I want to do with my life? What is going to make me happy?" After quiet introspection, the answer was always the same: over and over my quiet internal voice said, "I want to be around animals every day of my life." Without a doubt, the answer was to follow my joy and create the career of my dreams, focused around animals. So I set about to make that happen!
I relocated cities, enrolled in veterinary technician school, became employed by a local holistic veterinarian, and after gaining hands-on experience launched my own specialty animal care business focused on senior and special-needs animals. In April of 2012 I launched Healing Hands Animal Care.
I cared for hundreds of senior and special needs animals around Sonoma County from 2012-2023 and supported my clients as they transitioned, often present for the final moments.
Starting in 2016, and ongoing, I began to support local mobile veterinarians as needed with their clients.
That same year I formally became certified in Pet Loss Companioning and began offering formal pet loss grief support sessions.
I have assisted pet parents both in person and remotely to feel empowered in their grief journey, address residual guilt and find joy in life again. This is profound, meaningful and deeply transformative work.
My work continues to evolve, guided by the wisdom of the universe. Rosemary is still with me in spirit. My bond with her is sacred, eternal and informs my work on a daily basis.