Coach Kim

About Me

My Story

If you were to look through a window on my childhood you would see a family of four living on a quaint farmette in  southern Wisconsin filled with animals and nature. 

You would see a hardworking father devoted to providing for his family. You would see a stay at home mom focused on her children and the household. 

You would see me. A young girl getting her chores done and working hard for her animals. You would see me preparing my horses for 4-H shows and the ribbons I won as a result of my efforts. 

If I were standing next to you as you looked through this window, you might turn to me and say what a blessed childhood you were witnessing through the panes of glass. You might tell me how lucky I was to have grown up this way. 

I would tell you I see something very different through that window.


I see a father who is at war with the unfinished business from his childhood. A man without the emotional fitness to parent or be a loving partner to his wife. I see a man who has become laser focused on being in control of everything, his loved ones paying the price. I see a mother who was isolated and dependent on others to bring her joy. Caught up in the trauma of her marriage, past hurts, and grief while allowing her children to carry out emotional and mental burdens suited for mature adults.

I see a lot of conflict and horrific fights. Believing it was all my fault and couldn’t make it stop, I began to wonder at an early age, if I was never born maybe this wouldn’t be happening. I hear them talking in the room just out of view of this idealic window. I see a girl, me, carrying the immense weight of undefined expectations on her shoulders as she carries the water buckets to her horses and chickens. 

I see a girl whose every step is consumed with worry – worry that she’ll do something wrong, worry that she’ll make another mistake, worry that she’s not good enough, worry from threats she or her horses will be sent far away.

I see a girl who is being bullied at school and church, but when she speaks up it’s dismissed. I see a girl who is unprotected.  I see a girl who will be preyed upon sexually because although she has been taught to be gritty and tough, she is still just a girl who doesn’t know how to navigate complicated things such as coercion and sexual boundaries (date rape) on her own.

I see a girl who doesn’t recognize it as such yet, but feels abandoned, desperately alone and worthless.

I see a girl who is caught between what she feels in her heart and what her church, school, and home tells her is right and valuable.

I see a girl who measures her pain against the “it could be worse” scenarios and chooses to believe she has it as good, despite the pain in her soul. Just having the thought of being less than grateful adds the burdens of guilt and shame to her load.

I see a girl who has a rough and rocky road ahead of her. 

I also see a girl who will take all of this and learn how to heal her own pain so she can guide others to do the same.

The truth is none of us have the idyllic childhood. 

The truth is everyone has trauma. 

The truth is there is no such thing as insignificant trauma and no one’s trauma should be measured against another’s.

My trauma bore out in a three-fold attack on my whole being. Physically, I tortured my body with eating disorders, alcohol and achievements.  It was the only way I could find control, comfort and meaning.  Mentally and emotionally, I was a mess with suicidal thoughts, depression, and extreme anxiety. It was the only way I could carry the burden of all that I believed was expected of me. Spiritually, I was disconnected. It was the only way I could reconcile the conflict I felt between my definition of good and right and the Catholic church’s definition of good and right.

Did I let any of that stop me? Heck no. 

I was the gritty, tough, scrappy woman my father raised. I used my strategies – disordered eating, alcohol, disconnection and workaholism – to navigate life quite successfully. I became a farrier (horse podiatrist), and I chose to specialize in working biomechanics and unique modalities on critical cases. That was a pivotal step on my life journey to healing myself.  I was blessed with mentors that extended their grace and unconditional love when I fell short and believed in me when I did not. 

It was the horses that held space for me to be authentic. I always felt I could hear messages of comfort and reassurance from them. Even though I could not express that to anyone around me. I believe now that it was God’s grace and unconditional love.

In 2018, I learned about Equine Gestalt Coaching when I became Coach Stacey Bean’s farrier. While I trimmed her horses hooves, I observed and asked questions about the work she did in partnership with her horses. 

At first I was very reticent. To me it looked like mystic crystal, wackadoo stuff.  I had learned in church that kind of thing was wrong and unacceptable to participate in.

During that 1st year of becoming her farrier, I carried deep emotional pain and personal limiting beliefs. Unexpectedly, I suffered a profound loss like nothing I had experienced before.  To the outside world I just forged along and shod another horse; but I was devastated, unseen, unheard, and spiraling into a deep and discontented workaholic abyss.

It was amazing how Stacey and the horses could see through my facade. I realized what a rare and unfamiliar feeling that was. I prayed to God and asked for guidance in my next steps in healing. The answer was clear, my path to healing was through Stacey’s barn. 

In a few sessions with the horses, I made more progress toward feeling right than I had in all the years prior. I had become sober many years before while working the 12 steps, and I’d accepted Jesus Christ as my higher power.  I’d also worked with therapists and sought out other connection in my life.

What I completed and discovered through Gestalt and the horses in myself was profound. It was truly life changing in such an amazing way that it became my calling to show it to others.

Being a farrier can be physically brutal to one’s body. At the rate I was going, I knew I was on borrowed time in my profession. I have always loved the idea of connecting people and horses but held a limiting belief that it was a frivolous idea. 

Well, I didn’t have to pray long to hear God exclaiming “This it! Trust me! Go!”

The Equine Gestaltist training program with Melisa Pearce of Touched by a Horse is where I headed in January of 2020.

In Melisa’s rigorously intense two year program, I found more parts of myself and put those pieces into place on the slate of my whole beingness. I also began to watch the inspiration of my healing take effect on not just myself, but my family. 

I feel good and right about where I am and where I am going from here.

If you were to look through a window into my life now, you would see a woman gaining true strength and grit with grace. You’ll see a  woman who wants to spread contagious love and compassion. You’ll see a woman who is spiritual and faithful in the trinity, but not consumed by religion and legalism. You will see a woman who will continue working on her own progress toward wholeness while inspiring others to join her. 

If you turned to me and said,

“You live a blessed life.” 

I would say, “Yes, I do!” 

Take my hand, let the horses and I walk with you to


“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17

 About the EGCMethod®

 The Equine Gestalt Coaching Method® was developed by Melisa Pearce, a core founder of the horse ­human healing movement since 1989. The experiential nature of the method involves the horse as an active partner with the coach in the client’s exploratory process. The integrative approach of the equine’s interaction combined with positive coaching, somatic awareness, guidance and Gestalt methodology, assists the client in examining their life and choices made with a focus on designing a positive future.

Preparing for your EGC Session

Your EGCMethod session with the horse will be outdoors or in an enclosed arena. Be sure to dress appropriately to be outdoors and in the weather. Although you may choose not to go into the pen with the horse, almost everyone does — please wear close toed shoes. You will not ride the horse. No horse experience is necessary.

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