Getting Raw: My Personal Journey to Holistic Healing
"There is no birth of consciousness without pain."
- C.G. Jung
I want to be fully transparent with readers on who I am and how I arrived to this moment. And by “this moment”, I mean the one where I’m currently seeking to help others through their own emotional, spiritual and physical healing.
I deeply desire to help others discover their personal power and their truth. I feel that when we connect to this, it opens doors to where we are meant to go. We connect to our purpose.
I feel so passionate about this because I have firsthand experience after having gone through my own trauma, mental health struggles, disordered eating and exercise, toxic relationships, etc. Being human and having human struggles. All of the pain, ego and suffering.
The road to healing hasn’t been an easy one. Now, I continue on that path gracefully. I personally believe that our healing never “ends”, per say. Rather, we advance to a new level of healing and consciousness every time we release or heal a wound. We become stronger versions of ourselves, growing closer to our true self. And the more inner strength we build through this process, the more, dare I say, enjoyable and enlightening the healing journey becomes.
The most vivid memory I have of when I began my personal journey into what I call holistic healing was in 2012. I was living in Nashville. I had just ended a really toxic, on-and-off again relationship. And I made the decision to stop taking (cold turkey) the anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medications I had been taking for FIVE years.
I want to preface this by saying I do not condone anyone altering their medication in any way without consulting a professional. It can be dangerous. And trust me, the side-effects were not pleasant. In hindsight, would I have taken a safer approach? Absolutely.
Honestly, I can’t tell you what inspired me to make the decision to go off of the meds I had been taking so religiously. I believe Spirit or a deeper knowing within me knew that this wasn’t a part of my personal path to healing. So I stopped. After the side-effects passed, which, again, probably wouldn’t have been so drastic had I consulted a doctor, I felt better than I ever had in contrast to when I was taking the medication.
I felt clear. I felt like I had just stepped out of a fog. I felt like me.
I think it was only a week or so later when I stepped into my first hot yoga class. And I was hooked. I attended classes 5-7 days a week, every week, for well over a year. I had never moved my body in a way that I truly enjoyed, like I did in yoga.
Over a few months, I noticed my anxiety decreased dramatically. I felt happier. My mind felt quieter. I felt healthier. I finally felt free from the toxic relationship I couldn’t seem to shake off. I was making healthier, balanced food choices. Over time, the extra weight (50 lbs.) I had gained from emotional and disordered eating began to effortlessly drop. No dieting. No crazy exercise.
I also felt inspired to seek out a new therapist, who helped immensely through the early stages of processing my trauma. In fact, she inspired me so much, that it led me to decide to leave my office job doing graphic design, leave my friends and a city I loved behind, move out to the southwest to a city I’d never been to, and pursue my masters in Art Therapy/Counseling.
And it really took off from there. Moving to Santa Fe, New Mexico, a town with an abundance of alternative healing resources, was a huge part of this. I wanted to learn about it all. I started to study so many different topics and avenues in relation to healing. Cooking, yoga, spirituality, Ayurveda, mindfulness, crystals, tarot, energy work—you name it. Not to mention the immersive art therapy/counseling masters program I went through was focused on consciousness-centered therapeutic work and practices.
But even before I landed out here in the desert, starting my yoga practice in Nashville is what started to open the door to me realizing there is more than one way to heal. It’s not only therapy. It’s not only medication. It’s many, many things we can do for our mind, body, and spirit, to find balance and unity within ourselves.
It’s through movement. It’s through food. Meditation. Nature. Creativity. Community. So many options. And it's unique to every person!
The road to healing has taken serious dedication to myself and to my highest good. It meant making really hard choices at times. It meant walking away from what felt comfortable.
It meant me being open to my life looking like something I never imagined it to.
And this was really just the beginning of how it all started for me. I’ve streamlined a very lengthy story, on how I entered into holistic healing and how it’s lead to me to wanting to work with and help others.
There’s much to unpack. And I can’t wait to dive in and share it all. I will continue to share what’s helped me, with hope that maybe some of what I’ve experienced and have found healing, will help you too.
My hope is that some people who are reading this, who feel like they’re stuck or they’re out of answers, know they aren’t alone. And that the ability to heal, to feel vibrant, clear and empowered is definitely possible and always within reach.
*Note: I felt it was important to follow up and address the use of medication in healing. There's a lot of shame in our culture around taking medication to help with mental illnesses. I know when I was taking it, I felt a lot of that. I am in no way shaming anyone who feels like this has personally helped them find healing. I only speak and share from my own experience and believe that we need to incorporate a variety of holistic tools (with or without medication) to help us find optimal healing and health.