About me

Note: I’ve decided to separate my blog from my business, so if you’re looking for massage and bodywork in Austin, TX, please allow me to redirect you to my business website, thewell.massagetherapy.com.


One of my friends calls me an “aliveness blogger.” I like that a lot. I’d like this blog to be a resource in offering information and inspiration to help people live healthier and more authentic lives that overflow with well-being. And here’s my story to back it up.

For years I worked in office jobs. In my free time, I practiced yoga. I meditated. I danced. I learned how to eat more healthfully. I saw healers of various kinds. I worked on healing myself: from past trauma, unhealthy habits and relationships, ignorance, sedentary work, stress, the culture’s excesses and demands, my own monkey mind.

Deep down inside, I was not well.

One day, it became clear that I’d had enough of the office lifestyle. I saw colleagues who were good people, also doing the best they could, but whose hearts, minds, bodies, and spirits were not that well. Those who knew it felt stuck making a sacrifice in their freedom and well-being for a mortgage, health insurance, financial security, their children, their self-image as achievers. Many didn’t know it and didn’t seem to question the price they were paying.

I did question it, especially after several people I worked with died. It sure looked to me like the stress of the job had something to do with it.

I also happened to know people (mostly in the ecstatic dance community) who didn’t do office work, who radiated health, well-being, and happiness, who felt alive and free, loved and loving, living mindful lives of contribution, and I wanted my life to be more like that.

My child was grown. My house had appreciated in value. I was ready (overdue) for a major change. I gave notice at my job 17 months short of retirement, sold my house, bought a vintage trailer, remodeled it, and moved in.

After being accepted into acupuncture school, I instead decided to become a licensed massage therapist after a friend who was a gifted healer asked me to work on him. He told me afterward that I needed to get a license to touch people with my hands.

I tried on the belief that I was a hands-on healer and liked how it felt, even though it felt bigger than I customarily saw myself. It felt like a blessed calling and also one that I would constantly grow in. I knew that I had nurtured the healing ability within me that steered me to make healthier choices. I knew that gifted healers had often healed themselves and somehow were able to transmit their healing energies to move others toward greater health.

I made the leap, and here I am, learning every day. I provide massage and bodywork and other interesting activities (peripheral walking, yoga coaching, wellness coaching) at The Well: bodywork & changework, my downtown Austin, Texas, studio.


Sixty to 90 percent of doctor visits are attributed to stress-related illnesses and symptoms (Humana, 2009). I don’t know why more is not being done in our culture about addressing stress as the root of illness and dis-ease.

It appears to me that since business, government, health care institutions, the media, schools and universities, churches, and most parents aren’t adequately addressing the amount of stress most Americans live with, and the cost to individuals, families, and society, it’s pretty much up to each person and family to understand the connection between their decisions and their well-being and to adjust their lives accordingly.

What kind of life do you want? Who can guide you on your path to wellness? How does life teach you to live better?


I’ve learned some important components of healing first-hand: for instance, that trauma is stored in the body, that the food we eat literally provides the building blocks for our bodies and greatly influences our health, that stress can affect our genes, that energy flows through our bodies and can experience blockages, that our beliefs are powerful in shaping our lives, that healing is a never-ending journey with many decision points, that my mind is unruly but meditation is a good practice anyway, and that Mystery and Love are always present in healing.

I live frugally in a 1959 Spartan Carousel trailer in Manchaca, Texas, a quiet unincorporated village just south of Austin.

I eat a Weston A Price Foundation/Paleo diet, work with a nutritionist, and am fascinated by the new research being published about the gut microbiome’s influence on health.

I love the sky and trees (I’ve planted ten since 2011) and wish to share that I am continually amazed at the astonishing sight of our planet’s blue sky and clouds and the star-spangled night sky, how day and night forever chase each other, the phases of the moon, seasons, the living soil, the living planet.

I wish I was taller. I wish my gray hair would turn white (it’s been graying since I was 19). I dislike loud noises, fear sudden bad news, and appreciate wholeness, authenticity, health. I have close to perfect pitch. I am a social creature who appreciates some solitude daily. I’m happily single but would make room for a companion who matches me well.

MBTI type: INFJ.

Enneagram: I’m a Five (curious investigator) with Four (artistic) and Six (scientific) wings. I go to Seven (the magic child) in stress and to Eight (the embodied challenger) in security.

Sun: Aquarius. Moon: Scorpio. Ascendant: Virgo.

Life purpose: being of service (from Lifeprints: Deciphering Your Life Purpose Through Your Fingerprints)

One of seven billion plus human beings on Planet Earth.

Unfaithful to my sorrows.



Copyright 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015.

14 thoughts on “About me

  1. I hope our paths cross some day.. maybe in Austin?

    From an INTJ Aquarian (and fellow trauma survivor who’s done a bunch of the same healing modalities you have, although I’m intrigued by the ones I haven’t)!

  2. I’d love to meet, Sue, and I am interested in hearing anyone’s trauma recovery story — what has been most helpful, what hasn’t. Time does heal, but it sometimes needs a lot of assistance.

  3. MaryAnn, Thank you so much for sharing this information, you have a fascinating journey. I was especially intrigued at the Spartan Carousel you shared that your friend Barbara purchased and fixed up. Do you still keep in contact with her? I would love to purchase one of these and especially the pink interior to me is beautiful. Can you put me in touch with her and her ask her to email or call me if she should decide to sell it…Thanks Donna Dwyer

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s