Meet Marisa, a community herbalist, yoga teacher, and co-founder of Queer Healers. She provides democratic access to holistic healing through free, small batch herbal medicines, yoga practices on a sliding scale, and tools to find information and practitioners with ease. We sat down with Marisa to hear more about her holistic approach and how to get involved.
Photos: Justin J. Wee
As an epic and abundant journey with no set destination. A milestone can also be a starting point, and there's this cascade effect that is not linear at all. I think of 'healing' as the process of becoming and evolving.
Spending time in places with people that I love, and treating myself to decadent experiences. I am all about doing what feels good, so I try to do everything with care which means free of shame, with patience, and gently. Self-care is giving myself permission to slow down, recharge, and move in ways that feel sustainable, changing course if I need to.
I read to stay inspired and try to pay close attention to where I'm at mentally, emotionally, and spiritually on a daily basis. Being attentive to my own needs keeps me moving forward because so much of the work I hope to do is about sharing tools I've found for sustainable healing. It's an ongoing practice, one that has helped me feel less weighed down, especially over the last year.
☺ I love Sleep It Off from 69Herbs in my nightly routine. ☺ Fire Heart from Moon Mother Apothecary has been so healing and grounding. Great on days when I need a boost of confidence and inspiration. ☺ Shea Butter from Hanahana Beauty has been my go-to for a decadent moisturizer after epsom salt baths which is a ritual that always leaves me feeling lighter and more embodied.
Don't shy away from pleasure. I think we're conditioned to let things be hard all the time. Continuing to grind for the sake of being able to push through a hard thing or feeling without pausing to consider whether or not it really needs to be that way. Joy doesn't have to be a luxury, it can be fuel and can also exist alongside grief and anxiety and exhaustion. I learned a lot about sitting with that nuance this year and it's been a really illuminating space to explore one day at a time. I was reading this from Adrienne Maree Brown about this exact thing and felt like I was able to exhale reading it.
I run an ongoing medicine-making project that provides free herbal medicine to black people. Every couple of months I hand make small batch tinctures and herbal remedies to send out to folks and support it via community donations. My hope is to expand [the program] to include guided meditations and workshops. Anyone interested in supporting can donate via venmo or find out more by emailing me here!