Self Care Basics with Lucretia Van Dyke
We asked Lucretia Vandyke to share some wellness wisdom with our readers by giving insight to self care basics. Lucretia is the founder of the Sesen Group and is co-founder of Samadhi Productions—a unique wellness production company, and is a local educator who has worked and trained with many internationally known spa and skincare companies. Our staff at Wake love Lucretia and in this interview, she will share what helps her stay grounded in such a busy life. This is the perfect stop for all your self care basics!
Basically there are two versions of me! City Me and Country Me. Since I’ve been in the wellness industry, I found that I have become less relaxed. Everything ends up inspiring or making me feel like I’m at work. I am a consultant and trainer for corporate companies. Even a massage or facial turns into work! I’m critiquing everything from the time I walk through the door. It’s taken years to turn it off. I also end up life coaching when I should be relaxing. So, I’ve had to really seek out other things and meditation in daily life–all day.
Finding Alone Time & Silence
City Me loves things like Wake! I remember a time I came there after having the roughest week and wanted to talk to no one. The lovely girl pampered me into bliss. She didn’t even ask me to pick my feet up! She gently guided each one into the bowl as I had headphones on, in my own world. I find when I need to relax I really like alone activities. So, places like Dobra Tea and the Light Center in Black Mountain are special to me. I love to go to the Light Center and meditate. Even lunch alone downtown is one of my favorite things! I just sit and absorb the city like I would in any temple I’ve been to in Thailand. Sometimes there is nothing better than your friends and the healing power of laughter! I laugh a lot! I find great food with great people and great conversation can heal the soul!
Country Me also finds great comfort in silence. I recently in the past two years started to garden. Which is funny because I used to kill fake plants! There is something about growing your own food that is so rewarding. It also teaches us a great lesson about life and cultivating our own personal journeys. It takes much work along with prayer to really manifest things in life. I say the ancestors really did the garden. I come from a long line of farmers, so I was like, “I can do this!” I was pretty proud.
Country Me also loves cooking and I recently picked up canning as a hobby. I feel they bring me close to my ancestors. I use that time to communicate and talk to them all the time. If I miss someone I cook or can something that reminds me of them.
With canning I name each series of things following heirloom recipes with modern twists after who inspired it. My Grandma Inez’s muscadine jelly. (It brought tears to my eyes to get the recipe right.) I have pickles named after the Orisha Oshun because they were sweet with a little spice infused with herbs that honor her. I also use energy work on my food infusing it with reiki and sacred prayers. It seems to work–everyone feels the love when they get the gifts. It also helps to have music and much dancing with a cute apron!
Cooking is my sanctuary as well. I’m obsessed with healthy eating! I love taking guilty pleasure recipes and making them healthier. Though, sometimes I miss someone like my dear friend, Lynn, whom I lost to cancer. I make her most amazing carrot cake. And while you can cut corners you shouldn’t with recipes like this. So it’s okay that sugar and other things go into some of these old southern recipes. I usually give those things away to friends or for someone who is going through a tough time. My friend Lynn always did that!
I also love art. Often when I’m working on a consulting project or designing a new retreat workshop I visit art galleries. I need to let my mind go into a different space. My esthetics work, body treatments, and energy work have always been like using the body as a canvas. Sometimes we have things inside ourselves that have no words to describe them. So, I use art as my soul therapy. It challenges me to step out of the perfectionist mind that I try so hard to leave at the office. I’ve started using it as a healing tool for others in my work.
Currently I’m into creating altar boxes. I have an ancestor one that’s really exciting and a great personal journey for me. I never knew my biological father or most of his family so this is my way of telling a story about them. It blends both families together that is special because they were so divided by race issues. When I heal they heal! I have old pictures, things that symbolize what family and roots mean to me.
Music is an important form of meditation in our house! You won’t be there without being on an audible mind journey. You never know what’s on my playlist. Meditation music doesn’t have to be all zen nature sounds! I just took a goddess movement class. It was so inspiring to me and it encouraged women to have a playlist with only women artists on it. We danced and balanced chakras to everything from Beyoncé to India Arie it was a special class!
Looking for more Lucretia? She’s hosting an Herbal Skincare Workshop at the Healing House of Weaverville in Weaverville, NC on November 13th with another event on December 4th from 1-3pm. This workshop focuses on making beauty products for holiday gifts, meditation, tea, stories of travels, connecting to ancestors through sacred space, and indigenous skincare recipes. Class size is limited and preregistration is required. Tickets are $40 per person and take home selfmade products as a gift. Please contact Lucretia for tickets at lucretiavandyke1 [at] gmail.com.