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The PHS Story

Psychotherapy healing Space-Our story of friendship and the love of healing

I met Bernadette twelve years ago in the PsyD class. As we started talking and sharing and studying together, a bond grew between us.  I needed to stop my studies because of health problems, but we kept on seeing each other and our friendship matured.

I had found a family in Hong Kong at last! O yes, I forgot to say that I am from South Africa and moved to Hong Kong in 2006.

At this time my mobility was going downhill. Since walking and taking buses in Hong Kong are difficult tasks for a disabled person, I decided to set up a home office.

My husband and I moved to a flat very close to where my dear friend lived and we had a spare room that I used as the counselling room.  

During this time, I worked mostly in the daytime and over weekends, whereas Bernadette preferred evening work and no weekends. I did not like the fact that the office was standing open a few hours a day, so I invited Bernadette to share the counselling room.

So, the journey towards Psychotherapy Healing Space began.

Between clients, notes and preparation, we talked and shared deeper events in our lives and our friendship deepened.

We both loved our pets, and Ding-Ding the Chiwawa visited Fox and Spokie, the two cats, whenever Bernadette came to the office. Playing with our four-legged children and taking care of them when there was an ailment were part of our daily routine. Even now, though we are currently thousands of kilometres apart, our pets still have a precious place in our sharing.

We came to realise just how important it was to our clients to see our pets and have a cuddle with them. Although the pets did not share the counselling office, they were there to greet our clients. Clients who needed the extra special treatment were greeted with a rub from Spokie or a lick from Ding-Ding.

The years passed and life moved on. We saw our clients start with lots of tears and fears and we also saw them grow and heal and became content and peaceful. We saw grieving souls letting go and reconnecting with loved ones and fighting spouses reunite and the love flame burning bright.

The end of a ten-year lease of the flat also saw my husband and I split. Bernadette and I had a dream of setting up our own private practice office together, and this was the kick we needed to look for a new place of healing and peace.

We were very lucky, her mom found us the perfect place in Causeway Bay. It is only a block away from where we were, and still as convenient for travelling. I was in South Africa for a family visit when all the renovations took place and Bernadette and her husband had the difficult task to manage setting up the office.  Oh, what fun we had shopping and choosing the furniture and decor that we needed. As God wanted it, we also received donations of money from sponsors and another counsellor donated furniture for the playroom for child therapy.

Psychotherapy Healing Space was born.

Again, we did not like the office to stand empty for a couple of hours a day and we invited friends to use the office with us.  During the last few years, a number of our friends shared the space with us and we enjoyed special moments of bonding, being in each other’s lives and growing greyer and wiser together.

We’ve had interns grow into dedicated counsellors and they now bring healing where they are. Most importantly, clients come and go, completing their healing journey with us. Each one leaves a small piece of their heart and soul with us. Peace, healing, comfort and joy fill our safe rooms. Light and love shined every day in the rooms and our roots, branches and leaves flourished.

The image of us being a seasonal tree is important for me.

We have times of stillness and may even look like dead wood. In these seasons we quickly feel not good enough or worthless.

We also have seasons of growing and producing fruit and leaves and feel meaningful, beautiful and worthy.

The seasonal tree needs all the seasons. There needs to be seasons of rest and no activity, of new life and energy, of blossoming, bearing fruit and scaling down to rest again.  No matter in which season we find ourselves, life counselling or someone to talk to is always beneficial. 

I have tried to share a little bit of the story of our dream of finding and giving healing.

I invite you to come and share with anyone of us your life story and journey. Come and nurture your soul tree with therapy or coaching.


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