Melissa, what a beauty. I remember when she first caught my attention with her beautiful + soulful instagram account. I was captivated by her lovely and elegant posts. I loved how she was showing up in the world! From the first day that I saw her profile (about a year and half ago) I was a hardcore follow. She is a inspiration for heath, natural beauty and present moment engagement.
I respect people… woman who choose to see what may be thought of as a weakness or sickness as a path to full-bodied health and wellness. Recovering from my own pain and “sickness” and feeling healthier, stronger and more radiant than ever, I’ve learned that it’s really just part of our journey to self-love and presence. Melissa is a Lyme Warrior and I have the upmost respect for her choice to use it as a catapult to greater health and life enjoyment.
She has a website that is everything I’ve ever wanted in a wellness hub! Connected living, beauty, tribe, fashion, recipes and healing. I’m especially crushing on her shop! She has great taste that is timeless and unique. I asked Melissa to share a with us a day in her life…
A DAY IN THE LIFE WITH MELISSA ROUSSEAU, CURATOR OF M.PARKE STUDIOS
I’ve literally just packed up and moved down to Topanga, CA so finding serenity in my daily rituals has been key in warding off any stress that moving inevitably brings, no matter how many times I’ve done it or how organized I think I am. That being said, I am also still quite immersed in my healing journey from Late Stage Lyme Disease, so maintaining rituals + routines is absolutely imperative and much of my day still revolves around healing.
I was finally properly diagnosed with Late Stage Lyme Disease in 2013, after a 25-year excruciatingly painful search for answers to my debilitating chronic pain and illness that seemed to get alarmingly worse year by year. It’s interesting…I wrote the following little blip two years ago about how severe, chronic illness strips you down to your absolute core, and I’m re-reading it now and still feel the exact same way about it all…
“It can either destroy you completely, or gift you the opportunity to build yourself up 100x stronger than ever before. It can overtake your entire persona. Become YOU. Or it can simply be a detour in your life roadmap, and become an opportunity to get crystal clear, more focused on the magic and miracles, fuel your motivation, feed your powerful soul, allow you space to fully appreciate your worth + endless potential, intensify your creativity, and grant you the chance to become infinitely more gracious. It can also dig your compassion well deeper than ever. If you let it. It’s your choice.”
Here’s a peak into what a typical day looks like For Melissa!
AM :: after my morning love + snuggle with Yula, we head outside for some fresh air, deep breathing, a bit of stretching, + her first of many ball throwing sessions. Then it’s back inside for my own personal daily tea ceremony.
TEA, MANTRAS, BREATH, + KUNDALINI :: Right now I’ve been using a Rose Cinnamon Tulsi tea with a splash of ACV, pinch of pink salt, and dash of cayenne to awaken my digestive system and to also help combat stress. Tulsi, or Holy Basil is such a wonderful immune + nervous system soother. This accompanies me to my meditation spot, where I burn my A.M. palo santo or sage and prepare for breath and kundalini. Before starting anything I sit in quiet and sip my tea, and go through a few rounds of mantras.
My absolute favorite mantra of the moment is OM SHRIM BHAGYA LAKSHMIYEA NAMAHA which activates complete abundance in all areas of your life. It is a gem!
Then I get into my Kundalini breath work and meditation. I am still relatively new to Kundalini but so strongly believe that it is the root of the deep, deep healing that I have been seeking for a very long time. Am beyond grateful to have been introduced to it and am really noticing some real shifts taking place. In the coming weeks I will be diving even deeper into this practice and am so, so excited.
BREAKFAST :: these days I’m rocking my tonic herb, superfood packed smoothie. I’ve tried other things like eggs, or even granola with fruit, but it just never sits well with me, so I stick to what works. Today’s concoction was Gynostemma Tea with Moonjuice Blue Adaptogen Protein + Spirit Dust, Sunpotion’s Reishi, Chaga, + Astragalus, Cacao, Maca, 1/2 frozen banana, hemp seeds, cardamom, pink salt. It’s a lovely boost that is immune supportive + so satiating.
MOVE PART I :: Yula and I head out for our morning hike. She is my absolute motivation for movement these days. Lyme has taken its toll with my joints so debilitating pain is my number one issue, but moving is crucial for getting my stuck Lymph flowing + helps so much to ease my overall pain levels. It’s just the getting going part that can be challenging. But Yula nips that in the bud, plus it is so important to her happiness + wellbeing. Another huge part of my daily protocol is getting my bare feet on the earth for a good amount of time to tap into her powerful healing energy + vibrations.
LUNCH :: is usually a green juice + raw wrap or salad with tons of veggies, some salmon, various kinds of kraut, avocado, and some of my Turmeric Sun Dressing – see my recipe below.
TURMERIC SUN DRESSING
6 T Extra Virgin Olive Oil
3 T ACV
Juice + zest of 2 Lemons
1 clove Garlic, minced
2 T ground Turmeric
2 T raw local Honey — if not vegan
2 t Pine Pollen
1 t He Shou Wu
pinch of Himalayan sea salt (to taste)
pinch of Black Pepper (to taste)
Blend all ingredients in a high speed blender. Add more avocado if you desire a thicker consistency. Drizzle over everything.
MID-DAY :: is when I dive into emails, writing projects, recipe development, photographing for my articles + shop, posting new pieces to the shop, sending out packages to clients, researching wellness tools + techniques, gathering inspiration, designing my jewelry line. I was cooking for a few private clients up in Berkeley so hoping to get that piece going again. This usually coasts me right through to the evening, when I try and really move my body again before slowing down for the evening.
MOVE PART II :: Yula and take a stroll around the neighborhood to capture some inspiring shots. And then I usually try to jump for 20 minutes on my rebounder to get my lymph system really pumping, another absolutely crucial part of healing. I’m not quite ready for the workouts that I used to endure. Looking back now, I was always pushing myself way to hard in bootcamps or power yoga or running. But healing really forces you to slow down, so I keep my workouts simple and bit shorter whether it be hiking, simple, mindful walks, yoga, rebounding, or gentle cycling. Someday I’ll be able to amp it all up slightly, but for now this is the level that my body needs.
DINNER :: my diet needs to be quite strict 99% of the time, which frankly, can be really tough + dull + tedious. Some days, I’m can be pretty fatigued by the time dinner rolls around, and don’t have as much dedication to adhering to the super clean diet that I start off with in the morning. So I’ll take out a gluten-free pizza crust, slather it with homemade pesto, and cover it with every vegetable in the fridge, especially kale + spinach, zucchini, caramelized onions, some grass-fed raw goat’s or feta cheese, pink salt, red pepper flakes and pop it in the oven. Top with some more kraut and devour. Easy, fortifying, still super nutrient-dense, but more importantly satisfying my almost daily craving for pizza. Other nights it’s roasted + sautéed veggies with a protein and some kind of kraut. This is usually accompanied about 12oz of bone broth to help heal my gut.
DETOX + QUIET :: proper and efficient detoxing is absolutely essential for healing Lyme Disease, or any disease for that matter. So while I’m taking a break from my daily coffee enemas + castor oil packs that were helping to cleanse my liver from all the treatment I’ve had to endure, I do indulge in a variety of detox baths. I haven’t been doing these quite as often as I need because it has been off the charts hot, and also because of the CA drought. But it is vital so I try to take one at least 3x/week. Sometimes it is with Ancient Minerals Magnesium Flakes (I’m allergic to sulfur so I stay away from Epsom). Sometimes it’s a mixture of special clays and ACV to draw out toxins. Sometimes it’s just Dr. Singha’s Mustard to get a good sweat going. In the winter, I’ll do regular Far Infrared Saunas, but simply can’t do it when it’s already roasting out. I do have a BioMat, which is a Far Infrared heating pad, and I’ll do a session before I go to bed.
SLEEP PREP :: I do my best to prepare myself for a deep, restful sleep as it is during those nine hours that the deepest healing can occur. If I haven’t done a detox bath, I’ll do a session on my BioMat, with a gratitude and healing meditation, some light breath work, a laying of various crystals on different parts of my body, my favorite Lavender Spray by Gemstone Organic, and a few drops of Third Eye tincture by Sister Spinster to awaken + strengthen my intuition and to open myself up for healing dreams and downloads while I sleep. Aside from pain, sleep has been one of my biggest challenges with having Lyme, so I do turn to supplements like L-Theanine and 5-HTP, and perhaps some Kava Kava to help calm. I do have the habit of watching some of my favorite shows at night just to decompress. I know it’s not the ideal way to prep for sleep and in a perfect world I would be shutting down all EMF causing waves, internet, phone, etc by 7-8pm, but hey I love my Homeland, Ray Donovan, + House of Cards. Simply cannot resist. The rest of my day is so structured, it is this time that I love to just turn my brain off for a bit and dive into someone else’s world for an hour.