Why did you become an herbalist?
I’ve used herbs for medicinal purposes my whole life. My maternal grandmother, who was the medicine woman in her community, started my education on the use of herbs for healing when I was a little girl around 5. … I was rarely sick and when I was, it was short-lived. But what really stuck in my head was when my parents brought my grandmother home with them one day after she had fallen and a big bolt had gone through her leg. It left a big hole in her calf and I was amazed that I could see all the way through her leg. While my parents were at work the next day, she had me go out into our yard and pick certain herbs which she macerated by mouth, then packed into the hole in her leg and then wrapped it up. We did this every other day, using less and less of the herb mixture, and I watched that hole heal up from the inside out. … I know she didn’t stay with us long, maybe a little over a week, but when she left to go home, you couldn’t even tell where the hole in her leg had been — and that’s when I knew that herbs could really do some healing and I was hooked. Already having a B.A. in mass media arts and communications from Hampton Institute and University, I went back to school in the early ’90s for certification in herbal medicine so I could teach people how herbs can heal without the harmful side effects.
What does an herbalist do?
As an herbalist, I assist people who would like to use herbs as a means of healing and balancing their bodies back to a healthy state. I teach my clients that herbs are a source of food specifics for their internal organs [and] blood. We eat food for nourishment — so consider herbs the nourishment your internal body needs to eat as they get to the core of the imbalance to correct it. Also as an herbalist, I make personalized formulas using tinctures, extracts and fresh [and] dried herbs for teas for my clients’ specific balancing needs.
Who are your clients?
Everyday people with everyday dis-ease — not disease — from imbalances causing stress, insomnia, high blood pressure, diabetes to menopause, erectile dysfunction, lack of energy, allergies, muscle aches and pains, migraines, etc. It has been said, “God made a remedy for every disease [and] illness in the plants of earth” … we just have to find them and use them.