For thirty years, I lived with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue and I thought I would have to co-exist with these diseases for the rest of my life. Ten years ago, through a fellowship in Integrative Medicine and by connecting with the vibrant healing community of St Louis, I have learned how to bring mind body medicine into my practice and into my home.
My professional journey has been focused on building resilience for myself to prevent physician burnout. As I’ve learned about toxic stress, adverse childhood events, inflammation and chronic disease, nothing seems more important to me than reversing the effects of these through my creative ventures.
Being able to bounce back from chronic stress by developing neuroplasticity and nourishing intergenerational resilience feels paramount to me as a parent and as a pediatrician. I look for ways to create balance in my life so that I have enough time, space and energy for my patients, my family and myself.
At any skill level, making art reduces stress hormones. Cortisol lowers significantly after just 45 minutes of art creation. The results of this study were published in Art Therapy under the title “Reduction of Cortisol Levels and Participants’ Responses Following Art Making.” https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/06/160615134946.htm
When I paint ‘I Am’ affirmations, a deep gratitude flows through me for the healing of my mind-body-spirit and I love creating artwork around these empowering messages. This piece I am Yoga is one of my favorites, as it brings together my love for yoga, art, rainbows, mind body medicine and the inspiring lotus flower.
It is incredibly freeing to be able to color outside the lines and express my inner child’s vibrant, joyful spirit through these paintings. I offer this healing art, acrylic on canvas, through commissioned works, local galleries and local healing spaces to empower all journeys, individual communal and global, towards wholeness and wellness.
I Am Yoga by Anu French