About a month ago, while spending time with a friend, doing what I do instinctively–offering plant medicine when I feel called to share it–a realization (an affirmation, really) came into my mind. “You are here to help heal people’s hearts.” –What? Me?
Casually stated, this certainly could be construed as an overactive ego–who are you to heal people’s hearts?–but when the words entered my spirit, there was no question that it was my calling that I was finally hearing named. The medicine I make is full of roses and hawthorn, deep love and wishes for healing, whether it be flower essences and teas, or sweet elixirs for soothing the spirit. When I offer a bag of tea or a bottle of flower essence, I offer it with my heart wide open, full of light and joy that plants can help us on our journeys. I love helping people trust these connections they make with plants through regular use. I love being of service.
Here is where my spiritual path and my calling come together. My training as a meditation practitioner, my vows to be of benefit to all beings, my presence with what is, allow me to hold a space for whatever arises, which is often the biggest need someone has when they walk in the door for a consultation. Listening may be the best medicine of all. I am so grateful when someone trusts me enough to let me hear parts of their story, when they open so that I can see the part that they often keep veiled. I love the layers of practice, and I am looking forward to working with more people as I hold the calling to heal people’s hearts in my consciousness.
Being an herbalist would surely be enough, but I am always struggling to carve out the time to live my life as a creative person too, to write poems and make visual work that sing to my spirit and help me be happy. I have always felt the need to have this separate identity as “a poet” or “a painter” or whatever, but I am beginning to see that perhaps it is all woven together under this image of healing what is broken. I have been attempting to conceptualize what I want to do as a poet, which is to put into words the understandings that I have been gaining about how our bodies are the earth and the earth is us, that our rivers are our veins and our water is our blood, that we need to value the bodies of women so that we can value the body of the earth. I am realizing, however, that concept is no longer the world I inhabit. I have moved, through my herbalism and meditation practices, into a more embodied experience of the world. I am more in the moment and less in the theory, which is a strange shifting of priorities and values for me. Strange, but beautiful. Strange, but miraculous. I am touching something I never believed I could access, and it is simple and clear, and perhaps these little poems of the moment can offer something to people’s hearts, to the great heart of the ocean.
Here’s a recent poem I wrote after talking with a dear friend:
“Some days, I wake to find out
if the catastrophe has happened,”
she said, and I wanted to hold
her knowing that there is no
consolation for this grief–
When you are past the point
of no return, the only option
is to move into the next moment,
heart open, broken–
I am working to trust these simple expressions as valid, good, and worthy. I am working to heal my own heart through poetry. I am working on manifesting this vision I have of a world where we are capable of waking up and shifting things through the sheer power of our intention.