In my last two blog posts, I explained the snake and moon images of my new logo. This is the final installment of the series, and I will focus on the leaves that symbolize plant medicine.
Our ancestors worked reverently with plants, and herbal wisdom is deep within our DNA. Whether or not we choose to be conscious of it, our very breath gives us an ongoing relationship with plants: we breathe out what they breathe in, and plants breathe in what we breathe out. We cannot live without them. Over the years, our culture has mostly forgotten the importance of this relationship. Synthetic medications have replaced herbal medicine, yet modern pharmaceuticals often only cover up symptoms and do not address root causes of illness. And yet, the plants are still here in our backyards, ready to co-create, repair, nurture, and heal.
Dandelion offers support to the liver, skin, and digestion. Violets soothe nerves, heart, and stomach, and move lymph. Cleavers help reduce toxins and inflammation and support lymph. Hawthorn lowers blood pressure, increases circulation, and normalizes heart rhythms. Skullcap eases anxiety, sleeplessness, and digestive issues. This magnificent Earth offers a rich store of medicine and fundamental wisdom.
My relationship to plants started at a young age. I grew up in rural Maine on farmland, and my parents cultivated an organic vegetable garden every summer. Although I disliked weeding and killing potato bugs, I loved picking fresh basil for my mom’s pesto, plucking a ripe raspberry and popping it into my mouth, and digging in the soil to unearth potatoes and carrots. Blueberry barrens were a 15 minute walk away in all directions, and woodsy trails were abundant with wintergreen leaves and berries that I liked to munch on during my walks. There was a big Maple tree in our front yard that my parents tapped for syrup every year. Her branches held my favorite tire swing. The crook in her trunk was a perfect perch to enjoy a bird’s eye view while sipping tea.
My backyard gave me a start in a lifelong interest in plants. In my 20’s, I began learning about plant medicine. My senior project in college focused on creating Ayurvedic massage oils from local plants. While attending the Ayurvedic Institute in 2013, I enjoyed learning about Indian herbs, but I felt that something was missing. I knew I had much more to learn from the plants surrounding my own home. In 2019, I dove in and took my first in-depth herbal class with Suzanne Stone of Moon of Hyldemoer Herbals. We learned the folklore, history, and meteria medica of over 50 local plants. How exciting! I could see, touch, smell, and grow all these herbs myself!
Since then, I’ve taken as many herbal classes as possible to learn more about local plants. I love sharing the gifts of herbal medicine with my clients, community, friends, and family. As I offer guidance to those on the healing path, plant medicine and the awareness of our relationship to our natural world is vital in my practice.
The plants on my new logo represents this profound connection.