Rachel Stermer

I rest the foundation of my healing practice and services for postpartum families on the timeless wisdom of Ayurveda. After earning my BA in Psychology and Art History from Tulane University in 2004, I became deeply curious about holistic methods of healing body, mind, and spirit. My first forays into natural medicine were on organic farms. I learned to grow vegetables, use wild harvested plants as food, and began to connect with the earth in a spiritual way. I met many likeminded farmers on this journey and they inspired me to adventure and explore the world. My journey led me to India, where I began practicing yoga and became fascinated with anatomy and the subtle energetics of the human body. I also became acquainted with Ayurveda, India’s 5,000 year old medical science. Ayurveda’s language of nature and the elements touched both my heart and mind. All that I had been intuitively learning while working with the earth was backed by Ayurveda’s intricate philosophy and made sense of healing on a practical level. I was determined to study this medicine.

I ended up taking a circuitous route, which included studies in bodywork and birthwork, before commencing my formal Ayurvedic education. My first stop was to receive certification in Massage Therapy at The Scherer Institute of Natural Healing in Santa Fe, in 2009. Incidentally, my first clients as a massage therapist were pregnant women receiving grant funded bodywork throughout their childbearing year. Serving these women helped me appreciate how magical pregnancy and birth are, and how important it is to nurture women and families. Next, I became a Doula, certified by The Matrona, a holistic midwifery school in Asheville, NC. I spent the following three years on the Island of Kauai, in Hawaii, practicing as a Birth/Postpartum Doula and Massage Therapist. I loved my island life, but I never forgot my dream of studying Ayurveda. Finally, in 2016, I had the opportunity to complete 2 full years of study at The Ayurvedic Institute in Albuquerque, NM, under the guidance of Dr. Vasant Lad.

Each and every day, I am grateful for the practice of Ayurveda as a means to heal myself and serve the community. I am touched by Ayurveda’s revolutionary self care practices and the unique way this healing art nourishes postpartum mothers and families. It is with great appreciation that I have the opportunity to serve as an Ayurvedic Postpartum Doula through New Life Birth Services.