My journey to herbalism as a career began long before I started my formal studies. I had been sick with a litany of undiagnosed digestive issues since childhood. Pain was just who I was and how I lived my life. I had been exposed to some incredible herbal healers but moving around the world and life’s inevitable ups and downs had interrupted my progress to full health. By my mid-thirties, a mother of two and working as a photographer, I got seriously sick. Malnourished, stick-thin, and in terrible pain, I was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease and had an emergency surgery. The surgeon told me my disease would not go away. I’d be on medication for the rest of my life, would need follow-up surgeries, and would not have more children.
Although grateful to be alive, I was frightened by that prognosis and couldn’t accept it. I dug deeper into herbs and nutrition and introduced fats and bone broths into my diet. Soon I began making my own tinctures and infusions under the guidance of my herbalist mentor—something was always brewing in my kitchen. The cooking slowed me down and made me feel safe. And then it began to heal me.
Ten plus years later, I haven’t needed another surgery and the pain in my gut is gone; my third child is an adorable and healthy nine-year-old. There was no magic pill, no quick fix, but slowly and carefully I nourished my body to health. I think — no, I know — that my kitchen saved my life, and it continues to keep me and my family healthy today.
I began my formal studies at theArborVitae School of Traditional Herbalism and I graduated with a certification in professional Herbalism. In my practice I work with a mix of herbal remedies using teas and tinctures, flower essences drawn from plants from around the world, and an emphasis on traditional nutrition. My clients come to me with a range of conditions though I have a strong focus on digestive issues.
And the journey continues. I continue to study herbs, discovering new ways to think about age old conditions while absorbing the many lessons from my own healing and the healing I see emerging for my clients.