Last September, a beautiful soul departed the earth. Her name was Jade Altavilla. She was the healer that propelled me to whole new heights and she was the teacher of Body, Mind, Spirit at the Canadian School of Nutrition. A few months before she passed on, Jade posed these questions to me: “Why do we think, as holistic practitioners, that we can heal everyone? Who gave us that power?” Jade was well versed in the energetics of nutrition but was fully aware of our limits as human beings.
Last September, my other amazing nutrition teacher, who had one of the healthiest pregnancies you could ever imagine, lost her son at only one week old because he was born with lungs and kidneys that were too small for his body.
My mother-in-law, Shirley, also passed on in September, a few years ago. I reflect back to when her son asked me if nutrition and naturopathy could have saved her, if she had followed the protocol she was prescribed. Knowing our limits, my response was “It’s hard to say.” But I clearly remember the incredible peace and wisdom that Shirley exuded in the time leading up to her death that had not existed to the same extent in the years prior.
We, as holistic practioners, don’t have the power to affect life and death. All I know is that the healing powers of nutrition can make our years spent living that much better.
Jade taught her own course called “The Energetics of Nutrition”. I extrapolated these words from her course handouts. “It has often been said that food is a metaphor for life. How we relate to food often reflects how we relate to ourselves and to those around us. As our relationship with food changes and evolves over time, so does our relationship with our Self.
Cooking, like life itself, is about transformation. The ability to transform vegetables into soup or grains into bread is indicative of the transformational power within us to change, to evolve, to grow.
The environment in which our food is grown, harvested, prepared, served and eaten all impact our body, mind, heart and spirit. Knowing this, we can eat consciously, with intention, so that we may begin to address the parts of ourselves that long to be fed, long to be nourished, and long to be loved.
Eating is about feeding our bodies. Eating consciously is about nourishing our spirit. As we re-evaluate our relationship with food and begin to understand the depths of what it can do for us, we re-evaluate the power of nutrition.
I invite you to give yourself permission to grow, to learn, and to heal parts of yourself as you feel ready. Above all, remember to be compassionate with yourself. As you establish a deeper and more personal connection with your food, you will develop a deeper and more personal connection with yourself, with those around you and with Life.
May your spirit be fed and your body nourished. Enjoy your journey. Namaste.”
In remembrance of Jade, James and Shirley. May you rest in peace after each completing wonderful but all too-short journeys here on earth.