You belong here.
An earth-honoring worldview includes us in its expression of inherent wholeness, despite our fears, imperfections, or insecurities, despite all the ways we might try to keep ourselves separate and outside of its naturalness.
Whether it is in my writing, teaching, or healing work, you will find me at the precipice of this radical, transformational shift in our understanding of what it means to be a human on this planet.
Here the deep ecology of our bodies — the soil, fire, air, water, thunder, and spark — reminds us that we are nature embodied in human form. For our suffering and discontent is ultimately based in an unmet hunger for belonging, meaningful engagement, and immersion into what makes us feel utterly alive.
As a writer and teacher, I search for the jugular, the dark and juicy places in the underworld psyche. This is perhaps our most subversive act: to honor the razor’s edge that exists between our awe, grief, beauty, and the soft hurts in our hearts. If we can find the courage to open to it, this grief reveals what is most true and honest in us, acting as a reservoir of resilience, powerfully aligning us with all of life.
As an acupuncturist and herbalist, I uphold a sacred container in which people are able to express and explore all of the layers of their lives: their bodies’ wise teachings, their heartaches, their celebrations, their soul’s longings, and the things they never tell other people.
The voice of our bodies reminds us that we can not close to heal. Like serpentine rivers, ancient forests, and endless galaxies, we are governed by a natural intelligence, a wild force that is always headed towards healing when given the opportunity.
It is only by expanding that we metabolize our unwanted experiences and traumas. We do not work these things through our systems by freezing, numbing, or locking the past into our somatic memory. It is by opening ourselves further, by coaxing, loving, and nurturing these closed down places that we find the best of a life we have not yet lived.
I support people who feel drawn to the alchemical inner work that is at the heart of their self-cultivation and actualization.
I support people who want to reclaim their understanding of wholeness and self-trust based on the paradigm of the living world.
I support people who want to remember themselves at home on this earth, at home with the land where they live, at home within their bodies, at home within their essence.
Kendra Ward, LAc., MAOM, (she/her/hers) is a traditional Chinese medicine practitioner and herbalist. From 2003 to 2020, she co-owned the Whole Family Wellness Center in Portland, Oregon, immersing herself in a busy private practice with over 25,000 patient visits.
Kendra’s primary teachers are not the long-dead figures of history or dogma, but the land where she lives, her life-long meditation and spiritual practices, and the complex, honest, radiant human beings she has been fortunate to hold sacred space for in her healing practice.
Kendra’s first steps onto a path of health and spirituality began in 1998 when she completed the School for International Trainings’ Tibetan Studies Program in Tibet, Nepal, and India. She then went on to receive her bachelor’s degree from Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts, and master’s degree in acupuncture and oriental medicine from the New England School of Acupuncture in Boston.
Today Kendra is a diplomate of Chinese herbology with advanced training in aroma acupoint therapy, therapeutic essential oils, flower essences, and various bodywork modalities. She has also studied advanced energy mastery, shamanic journeying, practical animism, and ancestral healing with contemporary shamanic practitioners, Christina Pratt and Sandra Ingerman, and ritualist educator, Dr. Daniel Foor. Kendra completed her yoga teacher certification with David Swenson in Montreal in 2000, teaching in both Boston and Portland.
Some of Kendra’s life adventures include hiking the entire loop of Killarney Provincial Park in Ontario multiple times, living for a year in Maisons-Laffitte, France as a teenager, teaching English in Istanbul, Turkey, living within a Tibetan refugee community in Dharamshala, India, studying with traditional herbalists in Katmandu, Nepal, hiking to the base camp of Mount Everest, and getting married under an old, black walnut tree in Saint Helena, California.
Kendra has recently relocated with her family from the Pacific Northwest to Charlotte, Vermont which is the unceded territory of the Nulhegan Band of the Coosuk Abenaki Nation. Actively disrupting Indigenous erasure, you can learn more about the living Indigenous people of your area through native.land.ca
When she is not in the clinic or writing, you can find Kendra conversing with the many barred owls in the forests near her home.
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"A woman in harmony with her spirit is like a river flowing. She goes where she will without pretense and arrives at her destination prepared to be herself and only herself."