About Me

My professional experience

I earned my Bachelor's and Master's Degrees from UCLA, and was awarded my license to practice psychotherapy in 2001.  Since 2004, I have offered individual psychotherapy, couples' and family counseling, and group therapy at my office in Huntington Beach.  After ten years of private practice, I was deep in my difficult journey to motherhood. I sought training that would inspire me and provide an outlet for my grief and frustration.  To my delight, I discovered the transformative experience of art and became a Certified Expressive Arts Practitioner (CEAP) in 2013.  I then followed my instincts to attend trainings in Mindfulness Based Stress-Reduction (MBSR) through the Susan Samueli Center for Integrative Medicine, UC Irvine,​ in 2014 and 2015.  These experiential programs awoke a creative spark and provided the outlets I needed to persevere.  I have since completed a Maternal Mental Health certificate training through Postpartum Support International and am listed in the provider directory: postpartum.net.  In  Spring  2019 I completed a workshop in Mindfulness Based Self-Compassion. 

My personal experience
 My husband and I tried it all: IUIs and IVF cycles with my eggs and donor eggs, on and off for close to ten years with no success.  Seeking parenthood in this way was a solitary experience for both of us.  The science behind the process can be completely disconnected from the emotional resilience required to persevere and hold hope.  The substantial cost, time, potent medication and invasive procedures all took their toll on us.   Although we were stung by our failures, we didn't give up: We signed on with an adoption agency.  After a year of treading water, we were victims of a perfect storm of scarcity of birth mothers and internet brokering for babies.   After a failed match with a birth mother, our fertility specialist offered us a donated embryo.  We were cautiously optimistic.  With hearts bursting, we finally realized our dream to become parents and welcomed our daughter in 2015.  

"I dwell in Possibility."

-Emily Dickinson

Copyright 2018 Jacqueline Shea Vance, LCSW (LCS20378)