We checked in with Dr. Marlene Ehrler, founder of Motherhood Medicine, for a bit of wisdom during this time of isolation and uncertainty.
"Every day, I witness women illuminate from the inside out as they heal layer by layer. They begin to realize this way of living actually works, + that these practices feel so innate + familiar."
Dr. Ehrler created Motherhood Medicine as a tangible resource for those interested in an intentional, wise, + natural way of healing. A way based in connection + empowerment, not fear + dichotomy.
She is a licensed naturopathic doctor, mother, speaker, writer + medicine maker who creates treatment plans that are dynamic + vital and work synergistically.
"We are real women, real mothers, fully functional, + we carry strong medicine. Most of us just need a little help + guidance to discover it."
What herbal allies are you leaning on most crucially during this experience?
"Garlic! When a crisis like this occurs, over-the-counter medicine’s fly off the shelves and many of the immunity all-star’s like Elderberry syrup sell out in minutes. It leaves many households feeling panicked and vulnerable, but trust me, nearly everyone can get their hands on a bundle of garlic. Garlic is by far the greatest medicine available to us at this time, as it is an extremely potent natural anti-viral agent. Adding garlic, cooked or raw, to each of our meals and medicines is a step my family is taking to significantly reduce the impact and likelihood of succumbing to any type of illness at this time."
How are you feeling about juggling motherhood, health, and business during this time? Any tips or thoughts you'd like to share?
"As a single mother tending to my private practice and role as a medical school professor, it hasn’t been easy. Many, many challenges have arisen. But, in a larger context, I feel the difficulties we are all facing is forcing folks to wake up to the reality of the systems and expectations we have in place for taking care of ourselves, our families, and our communities. My biggest tip by far is embracing the radical authenticity that is being uprooted in every household. It is no longer possible to attempt to separate my role as a mother and my role as a doctor and professor when my son parades his trucks through the background of my zoom calls in his underwear. This is no longer seen as unprofessional--it is accepted and embraced as a reality—and to me, that is such a beautiful thing."
What mental healthcare practices are helping you?
"Time spent outside in nature! It is unfortunate (but necessary) to see all of the trails and parks being closed off and shut down, but taking time to get outside has been a saving grace for both my son and I. In contrast to society completely dismantling, nature has remained consistent and unchanged. The earth is always there for us, and I find such solace in that."
What is one herbal staple you can recommend to households right now?
"Aside from incorporating lots of garlic, nervines—herbs that soothe the nervous system—are essential right now. We are all stressed, and stress is the arch-nemesis to a robust immune system. Most households have packets of chamomile tea lying around—brew a batch and sip it slow. This is good for us threefold: it forces us to pause with intention, it delivers calming medicine to frazzled bodies, and we replenish thirsty cells that dehydrate rapidly when we place high demands on our system."
Who is a colleague or fellow small business that you’d like our community to know about?
"Although staying at home is the most important thing right now, many of us do have to leave at some point or another. To ensure everyone’s safety, masks are an ESSENTIAL piece to flattening the curve and making it through to the other side of this. Many engaged designers I know are pausing production and shifting gears to putting out masks. Queen of Hearts NYC (@queen_of_heartsnyc on Instagram) is single-handily sewing hundreds of masks and shipping them out to families in need. Supporting small businesses like her’s not only keeps the lights on, but has a tremendous benefit on small business economy and public health. Win-win!"