Claiming My Roots

February 27, 2018

Claiming My Roots

In keeping with the theme from last month's newsletter, that we have already been paid for, I (Selima here) visited one of the plantations in South Carolina where my paternal ancestors were enslaved. Powerful isn't sufficient. Magical, nope. Life-changing doesn't quite capture my experience either. Maybe soul-awakening...

It took my breath away. The land is so beautiful. On the drive, I asked Tami the question: what nature-scape makes you feel closest to Spirit?  She said she desires to live near water. We both do, for sure. However, I also need trees. Big, majestic, old, Grandfather trees. I need to be around other beings on this planet who are much older and wiser than humans.

I didn't know what to expect with the plantation. We were in the heart of antebellum South Carolina, y'all. Back-country. Sprawling, gated plantations. Confederate flags on pickup trucks and not another person of color in sight. We drove, wiped the sweat off our brows, checked the mirrors every five seconds and prayed.

After miles of forest and open fields, we pulled into this very small community of about 15-20 houses and near the end of the road were the gates to the plantation. Small. Modest. It didn't appear to be the 600 plus acres I had read about. And stunning, canopied by old Oaks. Behind the big house, a large river.

Looking, walking around, then boldly driving through the gates and around the circular driveway (straight up trespassing and not giving a damn), I didn't think about what happened here. Who was purchased and sold or if the trees hold memories I cannot bear to imagine. I just felt home and like a large piece of my soul was being sown back together.

"Home" feels like an odd way for a Black person to refer to a plantation.

I wanted to hate it. Instead I fell in love.

I wanted the world to know that I intend to buy back this land as an act of revenge and justice. Instead I want to keep it a secret, nestle under the trees with a good book and kayak in the river.

I wanted the current owners and neighbors to come at me, pick a fight, so I could declare my birth rights to this land simply because my ancestors built it. Instead, they were completely oblivious to our presence.

I wanted it to feel cursed. Instead the trees said "I will always transmute human rage and ugliness into beauty."

Home. I shake my head and accept it as a fractured place. Returning to this plantation was my attempt to gather and mend one of its many broken pieces.

Love,
Selima

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in Iwilla Remedy Herbalism & Spirituality Blog

How Do Herbalists Make Money?
How Do Herbalists Make Money?

September 28, 2022

There aren’t exactly hundreds of “herbalist” jobs on Indeed, LinkedIn, or Monster for which we can apply. The work is deeply meaningful and rewarding, but let’s be honest, satisfaction without financial stability is stressful.

There are structural challenges herbalists face in trying to build sustainable careers. In this video, I give context for those obstacles and share the most common paths I’ve seen herbalists take to build their careers, pay their bills, and financially thrive.

View full article →

Recipe for Bacterial Vaginosis and Yeast Infections
Recipe for Bacterial Vaginosis and Yeast Infections

September 21, 2022

Bacterial vaginosis is the most common form of smelly vaginal discharge. It’s caused by a shift in the vaginal microbiome. The ratio of beneficial to harmful bacteria shifts where you have less of the former, predominately lactobacillus species, and an overgrowth of the latter. 

This creates an asymptomatic (most common) or symptomatic infection that produces a grayish/off-white, thin discharge, and fishy smell that may be more noticeable during your period or after sex. Pain, burning, itching, and painful or difficult urination can also occur, but these symptoms overlap with a lot of other conditions, so it can indicate another concern to get checked out

In this video, I share 9 holistic tips that help restore your vaginal flora and show you how to make your own herbal vaginal suppositories that provide relief. The herbal formula is also supportive for yeast infections and other forms of vaginitis.  

View full article →

Lactofermentation | Healthy & Simple
Lactofermentation | Healthy & Simple

September 14, 2022

In this short video, I share how lactofermentation works, why it works, and give you the run-down of over 15 health conditions that eating lactofermented foods can help alleviate. I also demonstrate how to make a few quick recipes with ingredients and equipment you likely have in your kitchen right now.

View full article →