March 31, 2023
Thursdays are our busiest days because we hold our weekly live calls for Herbal Medicine for the Soul. On yesterday's call we were supporting a community member who experiences bipolar 1 disorder by developing a custom holistic protocol for them.
Despite being diagnosed over 5 years ago, at the end of the call they said, “this was the best understanding of bipolar I’ve ever received.”
There’s a common sentiment that when we’re in the center of our work, dreams that we couldn’t have predicted, much less asked for, come true. I never thought our HM4S community would become what it has: deeply supportive, filled with loving, curious, and open people.
Many have said through the years that our space is filled with their kind of people and that they can have discussions and ask questions here that they can’t talk about in other spaces. That’s high praise I never take for granted.
And I feel the same way. Every week I get to share space with folks I admire, learn from, and am inspired by and deeply love.
At some point in our lives, we’re all going to experience trauma. Regardless of if it’s big or small, we respond to woundedness by retreating and withdrawing our trust.
I certainly did this and it hindered my ability to make meaningful connections in my early adulthood because I didn’t feel safe with vulnerability.
But when you begin working with plant medicine regularly, you can’t help but start to view nature in a different way. You spend more time outside and pay more attention to the season. It is as if the trees, the wind, and the fungi begin calling you.
You soon discover that you have a place here among the plants. That we are supported and cared for and thought about. There is an undeniable force among us, within us and surrounding us that anticipated our needs and provided the medicine it knew we would need.
This powerful insight can help you remember that you are loved beyond measure and that you belong. In our human interactions and the battle between egos we have the potential to create a lot of suffering and we become jaded. We stop believing in goodness. Trauma conditions us to expect people to cause and perpetuate hurt so we distance ourselves. But nature invites us to open again after hurts and reminds us that openness, appreciation, and generosity of heart are our natural states.
The way we begin to see our connection with nature creates a desire in us to have those same generative, reciprocal, and harmonious connections with the people in our lives. If I can have the loving relationship with burdock root or chamomile, my first plant teacher, then I should be able to experience a similar connection in my human community too. It’s this reopening to connection that’s consistently demonstrated inside of Herbal Medicine for the Soul.
We don’t have to be alone. It’s not brave nor is it necessary to walk this healing path without the loving support of others. You belong.
Rose, today’s herbal pairing with Belonging, invites us to be open with healthy boundaries (those thorns aren’t for show). It’s antidepressant, anti-inflammatory, astringent, an aphrodisiac, and a heart chakra healer. Rose makes sure we don’t close ourselves off from love. When we are hurt our tendency is to erect walls to protect us from future wounds, but rose reminds us that such drastic measures don’t keep hurt out, they harden us and prevent the love from coming in.
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