Lacey Ingrao 2012

Personally Speaking: When I embody this work/play (nature-based practice, tonglen, yoga, council, expressing love to wounded places, ecopsychological training, ect) I feel my light shine and my heart explode. I am able to breathe more fully and be present for my community. When I come from this authentic place I exhibit a deep place of commitment and gratitude. I am most alive when working from this place of awareness. 

       The lessons of this last year have created a broadened awareness to the transition and restoration that is needed and always occurring, within myself and the world. This work has been inspiring and fully engaging and not without difficultly or depth, which I’m grateful for. I feel my deepest desires have been illuminated and love shines through from the core of my mission statement. I long to be connected and engaged with this earth, with the natural world, and I’m motivated to see how that connection becomes embodied. I carry a passion for many things; food, humor, music, yoga, nature, holistic medicine and life. I also love to connect with nature through plants.

       Recently (now a year ago) my partner and I moved to downtown Morro Bay, Ca. It’s not a large city, but one that consistently swarms with vacationers and ocean lovers. This move comes from a desire to lessen our ecological impact and carbon footprint. By moving to a more centralized location we are given the opportunity to get out of the car and onto a bike or our very own two feet. This move also provides us with a larger area to grow fruits and vegetables or purchase them from a local farmers market a block away from our home. As we continue to transition, I acknowledge my interest in lessening the ecological impact of densely populated areas and my first goal is to be a benefit to Morro Bay, not a burden to this system.   

Professionally Speaking: Growing up in California, where fresh food is abundantly available year around, has shaped my view of carbon foot-printing, conservation, seasonal selection, locally grown foods, and so forth. There will come a time when California will be forced to reevaluate and reassess the destruction of the agricultural industry and contribute to future sustainability.

From a paper I wrote in the Spring of 2011 which explored concepts of food in the current century: 

We have entered the 21st century having emerged from an era of extraordinary invention and development. The last 100 years has brought accessibility to food commodities never before seen by the average American. The notion of a super market where one can purchase fruits and vegetables that are not even currently in season is a uniquely 20th century experience. However, this accessibility has come at a great cost to future generations as 20th century agricultural practices have come under intense scrutiny as to their sustainability and environmental impact.     

The ability to harvest food for my family brings ecological concepts right to my plate and into my body and psyche. Plus, garden and local foods simple taste better! The knowledge gained from ecotherapy practices such as horticultural/gardening therapy is skillful, esteem building, and addresses both personal and ecological issues. There are many reasons that I emphasize this direction (mainly for the health of our planet: cultural, ecological, personal, psychological, and social) and my hope is that the information continues to come forth and flow into this forum for me to share.

       I continue to grow food and long to converse with others about personal and community gardens. Whether a single pot of herbs in the window, or a garden full of edibles, the simple inclusion of plants in daily life can facilitate psychological and ecological health and overall well-being (happiness, joy, aliveness).  As an Ecopsychologist my passion is unfolding, bringing forth the activist, caregiver, and seeker of health on all levels. My path appears to be leading in the direction of obtaining a Horticultural Therapy certification. Individuals are coming back to the United States from two long wars. At a higher rate than ever children are on medication for attention disorders, and people are searching to relieve stress and get healthier. I believe ecopsychological therapy is for everyone and look forward to developing skills to bring health and wellness back to our systems.

       Since completing my Masters degree in Transpersonal Psychology in May 2012 I find that I am deeply immersed in the acts of service. Embedded in the North shield for all my directional folk. Currently offering my time to a local garden project has allowed me to grow in my landscaping and gardening wisdom and has brought me into close contact with my community in a healing and tender way. My heart is full.