Q & A (taken from the Bark Website profile)
What do you love most about your job?
Helping people to access their potential and be comfortable in their own skin is the ultimate goal. This can be achieved once the primitive reflexes are put to bed, removing the hindrance of the overreactive Moro reflex (flight/fight) responses is the real key besides other benefits of better vision, posture, balance, focus, organisation and sequencing skills. Due to the presence of the Moro reflex often there is general free-floating anxiety (flight) or lack of empathy and tack (fight). The neuro-developmental therapy assists in giving the individual time to think before reacting. It is a great satisfaction to hear of people's reduction in anxiety or noticing that their habitual patterns of behaviour begin to shift.
I found the therapy when my then six-year-old son began to struggle at school with behavioural issues and had also developed a tick. We had just moved away from London to start at the Steiner school and 3 months in my husband died of a heart attack. As we started the therapy for my son I soon realised that this is the type of therapy I needed for myself also (the tickly back that is the spinal reflex resonated). My gut instinct told me that I needed something on a physical level, rather than addressing my head with the talking therapy/counselling, which many friends and family had suggested to help me with the grieving process. I believed the therapy held me through a very difficult time. I knew I was gaining control and coping well. I saw that my children also began to settle into life; the teacher had stopped talking to me daily about my son and what he had done wrong for the day. This was the main impetus for my training. Everyone should be able to proceed in life with a feeling of ease and just be yourself. Switching off these primitive reflexes can give back a sense of grounding security that has never before existed.
The Moro reflex has a strong link to the immune system because the stress hormones- adrenaline and cortisol, are continuously being released into the system. When I read of its association with Asthma I was fascinated, as I had been a chronic asthma sufferer all my life and was gradually getting worse, many times having to visit A&E when the inhaler failed to work. Besides having asthma I also had hayfever and was allergic to cats and horses.
Since going through the programme thoroughly I have been able to make significant changes in my life, following a holistic approach including many lifestyle and dietary changes, my asthma has now virtually disappeared. I never use my inhaler any more and do not remember the last time I needed it...my inhaler is totally out of date! My other allergies are also greatly reduced. Cats have been my nemesis for a good 25 years and I had managed to stay in a house with a cat- twice in recent times. No more A&E!!
Being free from the clutches of asthma really shows me what a significant result the therapy can produce. Firstly to be able to allow changes into my life (the Moro reflex can make one very set in their ways because of the comfort of the known and the need for security) Now as I see a healthier version of myself it is all the evidence I need to know that I can help others to achieve the same result and how liberating it truly is when we are no longer under the influence of the primitive reflexes.
My son who I never bothered to get any diagnosis for, who did not manage to make good friends with his peer group at the age of 7 is now a well-loved and popular boy with lots of friends. It has not been a smooth or stressfree journey but he is doing well. He remembers the time when he was that age to be feeling petrified a lot. But if you ask him now, he would say that he is never anxious and he wants to be a performer.
What inspired you to become a Neuro-Developmental Therapist?
I trained with the leading therapist in this field, Bob Allen who trained with the original pioneers of neuro-developmental therapy. He is one of a handful of therapists that use a combination of skin stimulation, as well as exercises to address the primitive reflexes. I have seen and heard from clients of the changes they feel with the added skin stimulation techniques, which is not practised by many other neuro-developmental therapists.
I have a background training in anthroposophy/Waldorf education (both lower school and early years)-an educational and therapeutic philosophy established by Rudolf Steiner - which has its base in human development. I had been a parent and child group leader for many years at the Steiner school that my children went to and supported many parents as they began to grow with their families. Also, I did a continued professional course in "Active practical love" with the esteemed anthroposophical councillor Tessabella Lovemore as well as other anthroposophical workshops on child development with Dr Michaela Glockler.
I am so encouraged by clients’ feedback and they too have felt a difference in their outlook (adults) and the reduction of drama in their life. For the children, I always say 'no news is good news'. When the school stops complaining to you daily regarding what your child has or has not done it is truly the biggest relief!
This is what motivates me, as neuro-developmental therapy can substantially improve one's quality of health (physically and mentally) and invigorates one's outlook on life. I get a great sense of fulfilment to have found this work and be able to help others to find their centre and gain a better sense of themselves, for both adults and children.
Why should clients choose you?
Completing this preliminary questionnaire produced by The British Journal of Occupational Therapy
can be the 1st step in getting an idea if you have neuro-developmental delay.
Contact Moni to arrange for a free 20 mins phone discussion to see if this therapy is suitable for you or your child