Meet Kristen Rude – Transformation Facilitator, Doula, and Multi-Passionate Canna-preneur
SoCal resident Kristen has been able to start a movement and community to help others find healing, growth, and acceptance with The Mermaid Movement. Launched in 2016 as a women’s group that focused primarily on spirituality and body positivity The Mermaid Movement developed a core group of community members, that started walking down a path of self-exploration together. Over the years, it has grown into a multidimensional movement incorporating dance-yoga fusion class, a wide variety of women’s health and spirituality workshops, along with hosting over 18 healing retreats since their launch! Their main focus now is focusing on helping others to be a part of the ripple by certifying them in their techniques. We spoke with Kristen aka Mama Mermaid about her project along with her insights and personal experiences within the canna-community.
Kristen was diagnosed with fibromyalgia at 12 years old and suffered from chronic pain and insomnia in her teen years, which lead her down a path of western medicine early in her life. "As an adult, I turned to other healing modalities- yoga, meditation, and cannabis have been my main modalities for the last 6 years!"
After meeting her husband in 2013 she was introduced to the healing benefits of cannabis. "I had never been educated before, so I was actually kind of hesitant! Once I finally agreed to try it, my physical symptoms of fibromyalgia and anxiety were almost instantly relieved. Since then, I have grown my own (legal) cannabis gardens, gained a ton of education on it, and even helped some hemp and cannabis companies with their start-ups!"
As a SoCal company, all of The Mermaid Movement's events are canna-friendly, and they find that generally their canna-consumption Is openly accepted, "When we book retreats, we make sure to book 420 friendly venues. We have learned to just be really honest about who we are so we end up around accepting people." The Mermaid Movement also incorporates canna-products into some of the activities of the program," My husband actually hosted cannabis yoga classes every Sunday for about a year back in 2018. We LOVED it!... When we host retreats, we definitely still incorporate smoke sessions into our yoga circles. I think it really offers us a chance to drop the ego and step fully into presence for our practices when we use the medicine with intention."
The Mermaid Movement retreats can be an incredible platform for healing and connectivity through nature. "Retreats are a space where we get to fully disconnect from our daily lives. This creates a space that our nervous system is not used to, and we can go deeper in these situations when we tap in. Also, our abilities to connect with one another are way better. When we’re all together, in an unfamiliar place, doing unfamiliar things- the social statuses and concerns that we normally have can diminish. Basically, we get to recognize so much about ourselves when we take ourselves out of our comfort zones and step into a new level of awareness."
Kristen is happy that a lot of the negative-stigmas around cannabis consumption are dying but is definitely a shining example of how productive consumers can be, "I am sure there’s this thought that ‘stoners are lazy.’ I love to prove that one wrong though! As a multi-passionate entrepreneur and pretty busy gal- productive stoners are totally a thing!"
She incorporates canna-products into her routine in several ways; whether it's making homemade candles with cannabis in them, using hemp-based face washes, indulging in her friend's hand-curated CBD body oil, or enjoying an icy bong rip (which interestingly came as a recommendation from her acupuncturist to balance the fire elements in her body). She truly believes in healing through nature inside and out of the canna-space.
"As above, so below. As within, so without. Nature is the key element to healing because it is what we are made of. As humans (especially in this day and age), we have so many opportunities to fall out of the natural rhythms of the world. This is what causes our dis-ease. When we tap into nature, we tap back into that natural rhythm that exists within us as well. This is the healing journey."
Kristen has been able to see the benefits of healing through nature first hand through the members and clients of The Mermaid Movement. "There are these moments when you watch something click. It looks different for everyone, but it’s a subtle ah-ha that instantly shifts the energy in a room. This is the moment when a client realizes that they are the mirror for what they are desiring. They realize that whatever they desire to be is within no one but themselves. I’m not sure if that makes sense, or if this is even an explainable moment, but it is magic. The most impactful moments are when NOTHING goes as planned but looking back you can’t see how it could have gone any other way."
The Mermaid Movement itself is an ever-evolving community that is currently launching its brand new certification program, "We are finally ready to teach people our unique strategies and proven systems to run circles, retreats, workshops, and courses- so we’re putting it all together in one course and offering it along with a certification for our dance yoga fusion class. Our main goal at Mermaid Movement is to help community leaders recognize their power and then fully step into it. This certification course is designed to do that.
We are sharing practical tools, ancient practices and modalities, and lessons from the heart that have helped us build our strong community. We are not giving a cookie-cutter, step-by-step method, but rather taking a journey to remind you of the healer within."
When asked what advice she would give to the world about healing through nature she stated, "Stop thinking about what you think you know and let Nature remind you. Education is amazing, but nothing brings more wisdom than the free gift of Mother Earth."
We love everything about Kristen, from her free-spirit to her amazing tiny house on wheels where she lives with her husband and three dogs. She is actively working to help others and truly make the world a better space for the canna-community and beyond. Keep an eye out for The Mermaid Movement's new certification program, launching in November! And stay tuned for the launch of their seasonal magazine in 2021!
Photo Credit: @tiaesthercreative