I certainly didn’t set out to be a jewelry designer. I grew up in Anchorage Alaska playing Army with my older brother. As it turned out, this prepared me for the real thing: I served as a Military Police Officer in the Army for ten years.However, it didn’t prepare me for Valentine’s Day, 2006. I was deployed to Iraq. That day, an insurgent attack changed my life forever. I lost my leg and suffered from a movement disorder, traumatic brain injury, 3rd-degree burns, back injuries, and PTSD. Recovery from my injuries was a long and dark road, and I fell into a severe depression.In the thick of it, my occupational therapist suggested that I find a hobby that used my fine motor skills. In the beginning, my motor skills were so compromised that stringing a large wooden bead with a leather rope was near impossible. My grit and tenacity kept me moving, and I learned everything I could about the craft while practicing every day. Jewelry-making became my glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel.
Amazingly, within a year, my movement disorder was almost invisible! My new hobby turned into an insatiable passion, and now, a business.