It makes me so happy to see my daughter excited about her 2nd grade class’s donation drive for Berkeley Animal Care Services. Having my children learn about community service and want to make a positive impact is very important to me. After she told me all about her class’s project, she mentioned OAP’s biannual food drive with the Alameda County Community Food Bank, and asked if we could do something similar for her class’s animal shelter drive. (She also talked at length about how much she loved animals and if she could adopt a dog or a hamster).
Community service was a big part of my own upbringing and the values of my family. My grandmother, June, had her own non-profit theatre company that brought theatre to underserved schools in the area. She ran the company, did the fundraising, and acted in one woman shows into her 80’s. When I was growing up, my mom used to regularly volunteer at our local homeless shelter in Santa Monica and I have very vivid memories of when she would take me with her. Both of these strong, brilliant, generous, and heartfelt women instilled in me the importance of being involved and making a difference in one’s community. And, it looks like these values have taken root in another generation of my family.
You’ll find donation jars through the month of February at each of our clinics at the Do-It-Yourself payment station.
A winding life has brought me years living in India as a Buddhist retreat leader, training in Mongolian contortion and eventually completing degrees and internships in East Asian medicine. My doctoral work in Acupuncture is the influence of Buddhist medical techniques on Chinese medicine and contemporary applications. Part of my own path is facilitating spaces and practices for us to connect our inner life with our outer life. Toward that goal I am currently pursuing an interfaith and social justice master’s at a school in the Berkeley Graduate Theological Union. Outside of acu-life I can be found at Pt.Isabel with my fluffy dog-friend, reading in cafes or crafting herbal incense and salves. My practice is informed by harm reduction practices and non-judgemental approach for people to engage in healing on their own terms.
My first exposure to acupuncture was at Breitenbush Hot Springs and the experience blew me away. I was young, living in community, and working on complex renewable energy systems. After deciding to study Chinese Medicine, I moved to Berkeley where I found the love of my life, and a new community of vibrant and inspiring people. I am a life long learner and enjoy diving deep into acupuncture theory, reading fiction, discovering music, and dancing Argentine tango. In my spare time I hunt for hot springs and someday I will find the words for the feelings that come while exploring the expanse of granite in the Sierras and the solitude of alpine lakes at sunset.