Here’s my story:
I was born in Eastern Germany. I lived behind the Berlin Wall for nine years before everything opened up for me and my family. For most of the Eastern Germans it was a struggle to cope with this unexpected change. Suddenly there was no security, no set path for my life anymore – I had to figure it all out for myself.
When I finished school, I had difficulty in choosing a career path because of my many interests. Nothing out there really resonated with what I felt I wanted to do. So, following my skill of creating clarity and structure, I had a go at studying Computer Science. I learned that I don’t have to be like everyone else – studying in this old fashioned way just wasn’t for me. I then started an apprenticeship as a Tax Adviser being very good with numbers, but soon wasn’t getting on with that either. The Eastern German economy wasn’t great at the time and I found it hard to find a job to pay the bills.
So, my path led me to Ireland where I started all over.
For the first time I experienced what it feels like to make a living from nothing but my own two hands. While working as a waitress in a Galway Hotel I was forced to change my diet. I had been a wholesome vegan for 3 years and now became a questionable vegetarian due to lack of choice in the area at the time. My body certainly didn’t appreciate the very physical work while not receiving the nutrients it was used to. One day it just decided to collapse.
After just four short months, I found myself having to change location and job to a quieter more peaceful position of guest house receptionist in Kerry. County Kerry was my saving grace – stunningly beautiful and food for my soul. I recovered relatively quickly, and I soon fell in love with the simplicity and serenity of life with very little possessions. Enjoying what I was doing was a great contributing factor. Ireland gave me the space and clarity I needed to listen and turn within. Without any material distractions, I delved into the Irish countryside and learned about the way of the Pre-Celtic Shaman from Amantha Murphy, dying in the process only to be reborn again.
Ireland fundamentally changed my life. I became aware of Nature Spirits and deeply connected with Mother Earth and the Elementals – I enjoyed every moment and truly felt present in the ‘Here and Now’. At the same time I was initiated into Reiki by Angelika Küster, a friend in Germany. The initiation helped me to open up even more and resulted in deep inner healing.
Then a clairvoyant told me about my gift of being a clown.
At first, I didn’t quite believe what I was told because I am an introvert, I can’t juggle and am naturally not a very funny person either. However, I do possess a light-heartedness and was curious enough to explore if there was anything else in me that would turn out to be useful for clowning. So, I joined a clowning weekend with Rachel Caine in England where I learned about the clown as a healer. Now it all made sense to me! Feeling a deep inner calling to discover more about this work, I started the apprenticeship to be a Sacred Clown with Rachel, still living in Ireland.
It took buckets of courage and peeling away endless layers of stuckness, hurt and self-doubt which finally gave me a glimpse of the pure bliss of surrendering to the present moment. I had to trust the magic to arise from nothing – that’s what it means to be a Sacred Clown. It can spark endless creativity and joy. Yet it also requires letting go on the deepest level, especially of needing to know what comes next. It helped me to combine my knowledge as an intuitive healer with my passion to connect with people. Giving me a fascinating new perspective to Life, it also gave me presence. You will find evidence of this presence and its reflection in all that I do to this day.
It was time to move on.
After three years of intensive self-discovery and self-development in Ireland, I moved to England with one car load full of belongings. I figured I could be closer to my Sacred Clown companions and knew I would find the man of my life here. However, the fast pace of London life swallowed me completely. I worked so hard that I lost myself again and found it really tough to survive in this ‘World of the mind’. But there’s always a silver lining! For me it was meeting my husband-to-be, Lawrence. A gift that gently brought me back to myself and opened new doors.
All I had learned up until then wanted to be expressed. So, I was able to be Clown Katinka on a children’s hospital ward for a few months. One thing led to another and I found my current position as database coordinator for a children’s hospice service. There, I quickly took on big integration projects with vigour and motivation. I worked at a quick pace with great success until 3 years later I just couldn’t carry on in the same way anymore – my body was sending warning signals again and I recognised that I had to slow down to not make it worse – and I did.
I am proud of the work I do and I do everything with great care and attention to detail. So, slowly my working pace increased again as did my workload and here I was thinking I had everything back under control. Then, one day a tiny extra task just tipped me over – I experienced a mental breakdown. This time it had taken me completely by surprise and catapulted me into a months-long recovery period. I was utterly burned out, couldn’t even do trivial household chores, being totally drained off all my energy and stuck in a deep depression, beating myself up for being where I was.
My saving grace was laughter!
The weekend after my breakdown I had a laughter workshop scheduled, and despite being in such a low place, I knew I just had to go. That weekend was the beginning of my way back to health and laughter has since been my favourite pastime.
Now, fully recovered from my latest burnout experience I have decided to share what I have learned through all my recoveries and coach over-achievers in similar circumstances to turn their life around by saying Good-bye to overwhelm and burnout for good. Ever-changing and developing, I currently live with my husband Lawrence and dog Jasper in our house in Ashford, Middlesex. I now work part-time in my data role while I create and build on my life’s mission. I am a Reiki-Master now and connected to my inner Medicine Woman more than ever. To navigate life with deep energy work is so much easier, bringing balance to the physical life we know so well – it is one of the most important tools in my life today, next to laughter of course.
My newest adventure has led me to become a certified Gibberish and Laughter Coach as well as a Laughter Yoga Leader. I am an active member of the Laughter Association UK with a mission to encourage more and more people to discover the many blessings and health benefits of regular hearty laughter for themselves. In my weekly Laughter Yoga sessions I can’t hide the clown of course. Seeing the positive changes in people I get to laugh with every week is such a gift, and I feel eternally grateful to experience first hand what laughter does for me and my life on a daily basis, come what may.
I know that this can be true for you too. In every person I meet I see a mirror that reveals more of my true essence if I dare to see it.
I look forward to accompanying you along your way back to Yourself!
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