Welcome! My name is Carolynne Lewis-Arévalo, but I call myself "Lina", (she/her/hers) and I am a Licensed Professional Counselor and Certified Telehealth Provider serving adults who are struggling with anxiety, worry, fear, trauma, shame, and other side-effects of a difficulty childhood.
Let me tell you a bit about myself. After 15 years of raising two children on my own while working full-time in a low-wage job, I decided it was time for to pursue a career of my own.
I enrolled in community college at night, taking one class at a time because I was so afraid of failure. As my confidence grew, it eventually took me four years to complete my Associates Degree in Psychology, and those four years transformed my life. I learned to believe in and like myself. I learned that the only limits were those I imposed on myself. During that time, I also trained as a volunteer with an agency that provided services for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. For the next 7 years, I would respond at night to calls to the hospital or police station to support women and men harmed by domestic or sexual violence.
For this former high school dropout, these events had a huge impact.
I went on to complete my BA in Psychology and gave the commencement address that year for my graduating class. Then, it was on to graduate school, where I was given the opportunity to publish a first-authored paper in an academic journal, and to do a study abroad - my first time living outside the US!
When I returned to the US and finished my Master's in Counseling, I began my post-graduate training in an Intensive Outpatient setting. There, I became interested in the impact of early-life traumatic experiences (abuse, neglect, bullying, incest, witnessing domestic or community violence, sexual assault, racial or gender discrimination) on the way people think and behave as adults. The results of the CDC-Kaiser ACE Study <https://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/aces/index.html> really inspired me to continue my training in the treatment of trauma. Currently I am pursuing a Level 1 certification in Sensorimotor treatment, a body-mind treatment for trauma.
How we have been treated in the past is not Who We Are!
The idea of seeing a counselor/therapist can seem scary for some people, especially if you have a difficult time trusting a stranger with your private thoughts and emotions. This can be especially challenging when you have tried therapy before and felt you didn't connect with your therapist, or that they didn't "see" you. Finding the right therapist can feel like an uphill battle! (See my blog post about bad therapy experiences) Give me a chance. I offer a Free Brief Consultation so you can meet me and ask any questions you have before you decide to sign up for therapy,