Title: Speech-language Pathologist
Employer: Therapy Unlimited
Hometown: Beaufort, SC
First job: Mowing lawns & babysitting but my first official payroll job was working at the MU Bookstore
College/degree(s): Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology & Audiology
Why did you decide to go into this field: I really wanted to be in the medical field and I also wanted to feel a direct connection to the people I worked with. Therapy Unlimited has provided me with the opportunity to fulfill both my goals for entering the field of speech-language pathology. I provide patient and family-centered care and utilize my training from both the medical field and from working in the schools. I really love my job and it’s especially rewarding to hear a child say “I love you” to his parents for the first time or the smile on an adult’s face as she re-learns how to eat and swallow some of her favorite foods. Our scope of practice is so large that it never gets boring and I’m always learning something new.
2009 Mizzou Homecoming Queen
2017 WXN Graduate
Thompson Center ECHO Professional Panel Expert
Things that occupy your free time: In addition to being a speech-language pathologist, I own my own family & lifestyle blog, Gracefully Made, as well as work for a company named Beautycounter. My blog has been a great outlet for navigating my new role as a wife and bonus mom while sharing genuine stories of my trials and tribulations. And through Beautycounter, I advocate for better laws regulating the cosmetics industry which is both eye opening and rewarding. Even though these activities take up some free time, the majority of my free time is spent with family. My love language is quality time and I really relish the moments I can spend with the people I care about most. Give me a cozy Saturday with my sweetie any day of the week!
Husband/children/furry children: My husband is Casey Buckman and we have two kiddos, Taylor age 10, and Miller age 7. We’re expecting our first baby together in March so we’re excited to grow our family by one more. And I definitely can’t forget the biggest baby of our family, our sweet dog, Ziggy!
Fun facts (hobbies, talents, etc.): I really enjoy dancing and after I have this baby, I’d really like to try ballroom. I was in a dance company in grad school and performed jazz, contemporary, and hip hop. Another interest of mine is anything ocean-related– I grew up on the water and love everything from crabbing and shark fishing to surfing and paddle boarding. I learned to surf in Hawaii a few years ago and fell in love immediately! A fun fact about me though, I was a Mizzou cheerleader.
Currently reading: I facilitate a book club for adults with intellectual disabilities through Therapy Unlimited, and we’re currently reading Frankenstein. Another book I read recently was The Secret to Hummingbird Cake by Celeste Fletcher. Amazing. Being a southern girl, I love books with a southeast/coastal feel to them. This book pulled at my heartstrings for sure. Read it, you won’t be disappointed–unless you forget a box of tissues.
Currently watching: “The Sinner”—Psychological crime shows are my favorite. My family frequently jokes I’m in the CIA, maybe I am, but I’ll never tell. Now that it is over though, I’ve begun watching the show “A Million Little Things.”
Place you want to visit: I want to experience the world! My heart has a traveling spirit for sure. Casey and I keep a list in our adventure journal of all the places we want to go as we grow old together. The top of our list right now is Hawaii to visit my sister and her family. And yes, when we go, I plan to school him in surfing—he won’t even know what hit him.
Favorite part about Women’s Network: Being a co-chair! The best advice I received when I joined Women’s Network was to get involved. I joined some committees and this year became a co-chair for the first time with the Changing the Odds committee. I love being involved in an amazing organization filled with strong and courageous women!
Goal or goals for 2018: I’ve always believed that when you pray for something God either says “yes” or he says “not right now.” And usually, the “not right now” responses are there to either teach me how to work really hard for it or to take enough time to realize there’s something even better waiting around the corner. I remember the year I prayed for patience… Bless it! Y’all, everything that year drove me crazy until I realized God was in fact granting me a million and one opportunities to strengthen my patience muscle, it just took me a while to see it that way. This year is no different. My 2018 goal is to be more graceful, and what better way to strengthen that muscle than by planning a wedding, getting married, becoming a bonus mom, and becoming a first-time bio mom all in the same year! Woah. I am blessed to have a supportive partner in Casey and not only is he my biggest cheerleader, but he even helped me to create my blog, Gracefully Made. I’m navigating many new roles in my life this year. Along the way I’m learning to be more graceful as I go through the process, and my goal, by writing about my experiences, is to help others on a similar journey. I’m far from perfect but I am gracefully made, and that counts for something. Here’s to 2018!