A Conversation with Erin of Mother Indica

Erin is a mother, nutritionist, floral designer, a functional cannabis wellness coach and the creator and founder of Mother Indica. Mother Indica is a cannabis lifestyle, health, and wellness coaching service. It is a place for health, womanhood, and cannabis. With her dietitian degree from San Francisco State University and through her journey after college as a mother, health coach, and children's cooking instructor, she furthered her knowledge and applied it to her own life, all while enjoying cannabis. With this, she hopes that by sharing her experience and expertise in cannabis, she can help turn the tide in how we view cannabis and its global potential in health.

How would you describe yourself and what you do?

I describe myself as a gentle, motherly soul in search for meaning and good health. I have always been this way, it just wasn’t until having my son that I felt comfortable enough to take on this role. Using my own education and training in nutrition and cannabis, I help women and mothers understand cannabis as a wellness tool and how to effectively apply cannabis, as well as nutrition, to their own lives. This educational component ultimately feeds into destigmatizing cannabis and helps us to re-approach it as a safe and effective medicine.

How has Cannabis influenced or affected your life?

I must say, cannabis has completely influenced the course of my life. I tried cannabis for the first time when I was 12 years old. I was by myself in my parents’ backyard with a half-smoked joint I found in my older brother’s room. Being the little mischievous child I was, I lit it, inhaled, and my life has never been the same since. That day felt clearer than any day before. I remember looking up at the moving sky and feeling the wind tickle my arm hairs. I remember taking breaths and feeling the cool air fill my lungs. Everything was hilarious and euphoric and good. I felt alive.

To give you some preface, I was a pretty tormented kid. I had a great deal of childhood depression and anxiety that followed me into my early adulthood. I was awful to myself and held onto a lot of anger and sadness. Since, in my mind, cannabis was a drug, I took on the role as druggie. Although I felt amazing from smoking pot, I never thought to use it as a serious relief from my depression. So instead I went to other drugs as well to obtain that euphoria, which of course, worsened my depression. If I knew then what I know now about cannabis as a medicine, things would have gone a lot differently.

 What did you do before you got involved in the cannabis industry?

Before jumping into the cannabis scene, I was in the dietetics nutrition scene. I studied to become a dietitian at San Francisco State University by earning a bachelors of science. Right out of college, literally the week of graduation, I landed an incredible job opportunity as a dietetic assistant to a well-known dietitian in downtown San Francisco. While working for him, I was preparing for my next step, which was to complete an internship and take an exit exam to become a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN). Instead, I got pregnant. I was 24 at that time and completely thrown off. My one-year role at the dietetics office had ended, and by then I was 5 months pregnant and seriously in need of a job. I took a major pay decrease and doubled my commute to start working as a health consultant at Jenny Craig. For some freakin' reason, they couldn’t tell I was pregnant during the hiring process! Thank goodness for that. I worked at Jenny Craig, took one day off to celebrate my baby shower, and instead gave birth to my little boy. I was clearly overworked, poor, and insanely tired. Welcome to Motherhood.

How did you become a health/wellness coach?

I got my bachelors of science degree in nutrition and dietetics in 2014. During that time and after graduation I volunteered and worked as a health coach and children’s cooking instructor. I was and still am fascinated by natural, wholesome foods and living a healthy lifestyle. Growing up I lived on sugary cereal, cookies, sloppy joes, and pizza. I always felt awful and supplemented my awful-ness with adolescent drug use and way too much screen time. To say the least, I was out of whack and physiologically miserable. It wasn’t until I was in community college that my mom suggested I take a honors course in health biology. “Mom! I’m a writer and an artist, I can’t possibly take science classes!” but I did it anyway and oh, my goodness. I found my calling. I somehow aced anatomy, microbiology, physiology, and even biochemistry! How the hell did I, the one who always skipped school to get high, figure out the world of science? So, of course, I completely changed my diet too. For the first time in maybe forever, I felt healthy, my body was developing again, and I was safely thriving. Mind you, I never did stop smoking pot.

What does wellness mean to you?

Wellness to me means mimicking and embracing Nature as much as possible. Nature is an abundant, beautiful resource that will always find a way to thrive and maintain balance. As humans, especially in Western culture, we get so caught up in our conditioned thoughts and somehow convince ourselves that we are above or apart from Nature. We use synthetic drugs, fake powders, artificial colors, and flavors; we watch too much TV and we don’t consume enough water. We stay inside for too long away from the sun and because of this, our bodies and minds are failing us. We have strayed too far from our natural balance.

I believe wellness is to involve ourselves and our bodies with as much Nature as needed. Whether that means taking more walks outside, eating a plant-rich diet filled with herbs, spices, and fermented foods, finding quiet time, drinking filtered water, laughing, singing, and moving. Wellness is embracing our natural selves, finding and maintaining internal balance, and ridding our bodies and minds of toxicity, just as Nature does, herself.

What is your self-care routine? Do you incorporate cannabis into your routine and how?

My routine is a wee flowy and I am trying to find more discipline. I do my best to show myself more love by maintaining good hygiene, using body and facial oils daily, drinking water, and using adaptogens and cannabis to supplement my plant-based meals. I am intuitively following my body’s needs. This gives me a sense of purpose, clarity, and helps me be a better mom, partner, and citizen.

What is your favorite way to use Cannabis? Do you have a favorite strain and why?

Bringing me back to my days as a teenager, I can’t help but love to smoke. I limit my use of paper, and mostly use a bubbler. Reason being the water filters out tar and other carcinogens. I am dabbling with tinctures, as they provide some of the most accurate consistency of cannabinoids and terpene profiles.

What do you tell another mother who is interested in cannabis as an alternative or addition to their wellness routine?

I’d first congratulate her on becoming aware of cannabis and how it may help her. Then, get educated! The more she understands how cannabis works and how it the interactions with the body, the more she’ll understand how it could effectively help her. Another component to this is understanding what responsible consumption looks like. Once you acquire this information, you are ready to make an informed decision on whether or not you would benefit from cannabis use. I believe every woman should have access to reliable cannabis education so that she can get the very best from this beautiful plant.

What advice can you give someone who wants to come out of the Cannabis closet to their friends and family (children, spouse)?

The honesty will set you free and allow you to enjoy cannabis guilt and shame-free. Cannabis prohibition has invited dishonesty into our homes and our workplace, which teaches our children that it’s okay to hide parts of our identities from loved ones. Staying in the cannabis closet lets our government rule the most intimate parts of us and our families. By coming out, you are actively helping to destigmatize cannabis in your very home and community. The more authentic stories we share, the more people will accept the benefits as truth.

Name one way Cannabis has changed your life?

Cannabis has given me something to live and fight for. Cannabis is a profoundly important biological substance, one that billions of people need access to, but politics and power have ripped that from us. Because of Prohibition and the Drug War, millions of people have needlessly suffered. I feel that with education and conversation, we can change this.

How to connect with Erin:

Follow her on instagram at @mother_indica

Learn more about cannabis wellness and health coaching with Erin at motherindica.com