Some of my clients have generously shared their stories to help you to make an informed decision about whether to work with me or not.
Working with Melanie was one of the best health care experiences I’ve ever had.
I was never one to be a super health nut, but I’m finding myself opening up to a whole new world. I learned so much about alternative methods of self care.
Without the support Melanie provided I still wouldn’t even know where to start. I wouldn’t have made it clear to my doctor that I need to see a specialist. Even though I’m still waiting for a final diagnosis, I’m improving my symptoms anyway…so it worked! I went off the herbs for just over a week and I’m back on them now and WOW. They’re helping me a lot. It was almost unbelievable, but now I’m sure that it’s the herbs that were working.
I will utilize Melanie again any day I need help like this. It wasn’t just the health support but also emotional support that she gave that helped keep me going. I’m not sure I would have kept trying without her. We did what we set out to do, and I think we managed to heal my insides even before the doctors figured out what was wrong.
I’m still planing to see the specialist again for a follow-up, but I think the worst of it is over now—at least the pain part. I will always eat and BE healthier because of our sessions!
~ Dana Soucie
Melanie helped me through a time when I was looking for alternative treatments to several skin and emotional well being concerns.
For years I tried everything I could get my hands on with the hopes of eliminating those issues. For over ten years, I met with a variety of doctors, but I was never able to achieve the results I truly wanted. So one day after feeling I had exhausted all of my resources, I decided to try a new method of renewal by working with Melanie.
Through the three months I worked with Melanie, I was able to completely overhaul my diet and skin care routine. She spent many hours listening to my needs and provided customized, expert insight and clear direction to help me achieve the results I wanted. Melanie helped me to listen and understand the needs and signs my body was giving me. Fast forward to today, and I am still able to use the many tools Melanie gave me to be in tune with my body’s needs. I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to work with Melanie. She gave me tools I can use the rest of my life, and they have given me a more balanced and thoughtful approach to health and well being . The time I spent working with Melanie was truly invaluable, and I highly recommend working with her if you are ready to try a more natural and thoughtful approach to health and well being.
~ Lindsay B
After having a malignant ovarian tumor removed 3 years ago, I was exhausted from going back and forth every few months for stressful scans, false positives, and the general feeling of not having any control over the choices being made around my body.
As someone who prefers eastern holistic medicine over passive symptom-treating, I sought out an herbalist to help me manage my menstrual issues and eliminate the ovarian cysts that were keeping my western doctors on my toes.
While I wound up requiring another surgery to remove my remaining ovary and another malignant mass during the beginning of my work with Melanie, the process of working with Melanie was everything that I was seeking with my western medical team. We talked through my reservations, fears, and concerns and I felt like every choice I was making was something I truly believed was the best for me. Even when Melanie deferred to the advice of my western doctors, we discussed every route in a way that I felt I could finally trust and understand all of the medical recommendations I was given.
In the 3 months Melanie and I worked together, SO much has changed. Aside from all the medical changes (surgery, menopause, hormone replacement), I made some pretty big life shifts. I am in the process of leaving a job that contributed to my poor health and I have developed my intuition to know my limits and trust my decisions. For the first time in my life, I feel physically, mentally and emotionally healthy. I know I will always have to work at maintaining this balance but my experience having Melanie on my team is the foundation of my holistic well-being.
~ Michelle Bobrow
The Holistic Wallet
It’s very important to me that your protocol actually gives you the results you want. While I can’t ever predict with perfect certainty whether our work together will be a great success, I take the following steps to protect you from investing time, energy, and money into this approach if it isn’t working for you.
When we meet for our initial Tongue Reading & Assessment Session, I promise to be straightforward with you about whether or not I think herbal medicine can help. I will tell you how long I think it will take for us to see clear progress and propose a program that I believe will give us enough time to know if we’re on the right track–and no more.
When we started working together I was a stressed mess.
I was tired, frazzled, and lethargic. I had no respect for myself and little to no patience for those I love. I never cooked dinner and rarely had the energy or will to play with my kids. My psoriasis was painful and out of control. During this period I also had some traumatic events in my life that I didn’t know how to emotionally work through. Before I signed up my greatest hesitation was making the monetary investment in myself. Mothers are taught to sacrifice for their children and families, putting all others needs above our own, but investing in myself was one of the best decisions I have made. Both myself AND my family have benefited from herbal and dietary knowledge and THE biggest lesson I have learned is a mother who takes time for herself has so much more to offer and give to those she loves.
Today- (wow I feel like I’ve come so far looking back at that time and thinking about how I felt!) I prepare dinner every night, we sit as a family and check in with each other. I am a much better mother and have so much more patience. I feel stronger, happier, and healthier. My psoriasis is the best it has been in years. You also taught me ways to cope that I will always be able to call upon in difficult times. I feel like speaking to you is like speaking to a wise, dear friend. I never feel judged and I always feel very supported, lighter, energized and reaffirmed that my journey to health is worthy of my time and commitment.
~ Em Alsup
Anna’s Story: Menstrual Issues & Stress
I came to Melanie looking for help to alleviate symptoms related to my cycle (irregularity, and extreme pain and vomiting during menses,) and for help managing anxiety and stress. I was looking for a sustainable way of living with these symptoms/conditions. I also came with great interest in learning more about ‘eastern’ medicine and healing traditions. I came with an open mind but I really didn’t have any idea what our work would consist of. The only fears or hesitations I had was the sense that “there is really not that much wrong with me! Do I really need help? Will there be enough for us to cover?”
We examined my health from the outside-in, and discussed remedies for healing, using herbs and tinctures, and certain foods and drinks. We also discussed strategies regarding behavior adjustments, and topics of reflection. We covered so much ground, I really couldn’t believe it! We initially started out addressing the issues that brought me to Melanie in the first place, but after a short time, we had already gotten to a very deep level. Melanie listened intently, and encouraged me to fully explore issues in our discussions; she knew when to listen, when to speak, and when to push me a little. She approached everything with the utmost sincerity, care, and insight. It was an ongoing dialogue (I should say “is” because I continue to tap into the things that we discussed and they will always stick with me). Specifically, the results that I have achieved are alleviated symptoms with my cycle (no more vomiting, mild to no pain at all); a regular menstrual cycle; incorporation of the FAM method; knowledge about herbs, which I continue to use to relieve anxiety and stress; modified drinking behavior, thanks to learning to simply observe my relationship with it; the idea that being attentive to my behaviors and my body extends is a powerful tool in and of itself; the ability to say “no” thanks to a more general sense of identifying my values and how to protect them; and the importance of ritual in managing creative energy. On a broader level, I believe that our work together brought about a paradigm shift in my conception of health. When we started out, I was aware that there was a symbiotic relationship between physical health and the mind/emotional/mental/spiritual health, but our work together really helped me to see that connection more clearly.
I immediately felt comfortable with Melanie, thanks to her warmth and nurturing. She was able to articulate things that I felt unable to give voice to with great wisdom and insight. I always felt calm, light, and empowered after our sessions. Working with Melanie felt like speaking with an old friend. Prior to our first session, I had slight reservations about meeting via skype. I had only ever used it to speak with loved ones during times spent abroad. Even though skype allowed me to see their faces, it gave an artificial sense of connecting with them, which I found to be frustrating. Working with Melanie, however, I did not have the false sense of connection, but a very genuine one. The contexts are different, but it felt highly professional, very meaningful, even magical. Melanie’s work was nourishing on so many levels.
I wholeheartedly recommend working with Melanie!
Lana’s Story: Hypothyroidism
As a scientist, I really live by the numbers, but I also try to have an open mind to alternative hypotheses. So, here is the story of treating my thyroid with all the numbers.
This is just one data point, but treated as a case study, it may be compelling. On 10/01/2013, I had the TSH of 7.43 (quite high outside the normal range of between 0.27 and 4.20). A followup on 10/22/2013 confirmed that this test was not a fluke — I tested at 5.42 this second time. This is abnormally high but subclinical and the doctor was willing to put off getting me on the thyroid meds because of the severe side effects my mother had with them. Instead, I came to Melanie at Psyche & Soma. We had our first consultation on 11/8/2013. Soon after that, before the end of 2013, I began taking the recommended herbs and making the recommended behavior changes as best as I could manage. On 4/16/2014, I had the 6-month followup with my doctor to check in on my thyroid.
In general, thyroids only get worse. In general, stressful times don’t help and I went through a very stressful academic job search in the time between November and March. And despite all that, my new TSH was at 2.3 — well within normal parameters. Other metrics that were abnormal on the first exam like the anti-thyroglobulin levels, were all within normal parameters again. So, it worked!
I totally recommend trying this approach and seeing if it works for you.
Wondering if herbal medicine is right for you?
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Arwa’s Story: Ulcerative Colitis & Anxiety
I reached out to you initially for help with my Ulcerative Colitis as well as my anxiety/PTSD and self defeating thoughts. I wanted to find balance, to lose weight, to get clear skin, to be healthier and more at peace- less anxious and on edge so I could be full of life and vivacious again.
Before we started working together I was worried about being judged or preached at, but as soon as I talked to you those fears faded away. I started telling everyone I know about how wonderful you are and to check out the podcasts! I look forward to our sessions and reviewing how far I have come or any blocks present. I like that we evaluate how things are working and what to keep in my routine and what needs tweaking. I feel valued, validated and understood. It feels like talking to one of my best friends whom I can talk to about anything, even things like anxiety that can be embarrassing. I feel fulfilled after the session and know what I need to keep working on and what additional steps to start taking. I always remember small shifts, progress not perfection. I love how individualized my plan is. You work with me as a whole person and give me knowledge about the herbs and routines used rather than just telling me what to do. It helps that you’re always reviewing what is working and how far I’ve come so we can decide what additional steps to take. You’re really good about giving me a few changes at a time; the protocols are not overwhelming but enough to see change. Now, I’m more calm- less on edge constantly. My digestion is getting better and I have a better understanding of how to take care of my body and my emotional life. I practice more self empathy. I feel supported by a great herbalist and I am a true believer in the power of herbs! I want to go on and become a herbalist in the future in order to help others the way you help me :-)
Meg’s Story: Cultivating Wellness
Our sessions always surprise me, in every good way. Your gift for listening is astounding and there are always sudden moments of clarity I could never have anticipated during each conversation. Your work with me is so much more than just introducing me to herbs (though that part has been spot on!); I refer to you as my healer. And you are, in so many ways. My conduit to a continuum of healing, I should say. (Your official title!) There’s a warm comfort I get from our conversations; an openness that puts me into a very receptive and trusting mindset to learn. I am not afraid to speak my mind, ask questions, or follow an unexpected tangent, and I can always count on you to come right along with me. I have received permission to be cranky, injured, hormonal, bloated, scared, dysmorphic, impatient and insular. Only within that freedom of permission have I been able to understand that I deserve to feel good about taking care of myself. So that’s first! Second, I LOVE how many new things I am learning about TCM, herbs, science, food, and so much more. You present information in such an accessible, respectful way; everything ends up making perfect sense. You’re everything I could ever hope for in a mentor/healer/herbalist
~ Meg Bradbury
Getting Started: Tongue Reading & Assessment Session
If you decide that you’d like to meet with me one-on-one to explore the possibility of working together, the first step is to meet each other and see if it feels like a good fit on both sides. In my practice, we always start with a Tongue Reading & Assessment Session. You’ll learn a little bit about Chinese Medicine (that’s the tongue reading part) and by the end of the session, you’ll also know some of the signs to look for on your tongue as a handy way to gauge your progress, whether we decide to work together or not. To learn more and book your appointment, click the link below.
Wondering if herbal medicine is right for you?
Download this confidential quiz for personalized answers.