As I dive into community, connection, and reclaiming my humanness, I continue to find new moments when my physical health, mental health, and groundedness matter. I feed myself food that's medicine (not all the times but lots of the times). I practice Ayurveda self-care practices and the rituals and traditions of my ancestors. For me, being my best self means supporting individuals' growth spurts and experiences of radical health, participating in bottom-up change especially around education justice and racial justice, eating lots of radishes, and dancing pretty much all the time.
I'm here with tools for radical health and healing because, as artist, activist, scholar Lilla Watson says, my liberation is bound up with yours. Our bodies are wild powerful gifts who hear everything we think, experience everything we experience, and hold in them memories of what our ancestors experienced. Our bodies can lead us into new strength and resilience, which we all need and deserve to have.
It's 2019 and I'm 34. I'm weaving my passions for radical health, radical embodiment, radical reconnection with ancestral lineages, culture, and practices, and radical politics. Although the me of ten years ago did not see a connection between "health," "healing," or "ancient practices" and social, economic, and racial justice, today and every day now I experiment with how food, spices, DIY health practices, breathwork, and ancestral traditions, investigations, and reconnection can build the liberation we need as individuals and as a society. I know being in our bodies, having positive sexual experiences and growth spurts, experiencing physical and mental health, and practicing the spiritual and cultural traditions of our ancestors can contribute to undoing racism, eliminating colonialism, and creating radical aliveness and healing justice. I see this as the work of our generation.
The eating practices of Ayurveda were a gateway pathway to radical health for me. I first met Ayurveda through a cookbook I used when I was living in Oakland, CA for the first time in 2007. (I've also lived in Pittsburgh, Philly, Austin, and Providence, and I was born and raised in (and near) New York City.) In 2010, I deepened my relationship with yoga and Ayurveda when they supported me through an intense period of heartache and burnout that included physical symptoms not recognized by Western medicine. I started studying Ayurveda during my yoga teacher training in northern India in 2014 and did a yearlong intensive practitioner training with Yoga Veda in Oakland in 2015, which is when I started to see clients as an Ayurveda practitioner.
Today, I continue to be awe-struck by this ancient wisdom and am studying and connecting with the ancient traditions of my ancestral lines, many of which are rooted in Lithuania. Lithuanian herbalism, paganism, and folklore are buzzing in my ears. As it turns out, there are many connections between Sanskrit and the Lithuanian language, as well as between the pre-Hindu gods and goddesses and those of ancient Lithuanian paganism. I'm birthing communal rituals and art objects to honor my ancestors and our traditions. I'm also making a documentary film focused on public school teachers and racial justice, and I work at an education justice and racial justice nonprofit.
I'm so pleased you found me here and I look forward to meeting you!