I reached out to Greer about being featured in this series after reading reviews on how wonderful her prenatal massages are. When we were able to have a conversation over the phone I learned that she was trained as a doula and a birth assistant at The Farm in Tennessee where she met Ina May Gaskin and many other birth-famous people!
We had such a great time chatting and I learned so much from speaking with her and I can't wait to get a massage sometime soon!
Me: Would you mind starting by telling us a little bit about yourself and Heartwish Healing Center?
Greer: I'm the owner and director of the Heartwish Healing Center, it's kind of a work in progress. It started as my private massage practice and was Heartwish massage and bodywork until 2019 when I changed the name to Heartwish Healing Center. There have been periods of time where we were more expansive. In 2017 I took on some more people to take my overflow from massage. What it is now is trying to create a community, a healing center where people can come to get help from a lot of modalities. From Eastern practices to Western remedies. Massage and bodywork is our staple.
I'm a licensed massage therapist for about 9 years. I'm Reiki master, practicing since 2005. I got into Reiki because of birthwork. I was a doula for a very short period and I immediately knew I didn't want to work in the hospitals. I had a midwife connect with me, she was looking for an apprentice. I did the birth assistant training in The Farm in Tennesse.
Now we offer yoga classes, during noncovid times. Ariel yoga, belly dance classes those are so much fun! Couples massage, cupping massage, deep tissue, and prenatal! Because of my birth work background, I've loved working with expecting mamas and pamper them and even empower them with massage. Making them feel beautiful, and feel better, and in touch with their bodies. It's one of the most rewarding things.
Me: So what initially brought you into massage therapy?
Greer: hmm, there were a few things. I think early on I recognized I was on a healing trajectory. Massage came later, after herbalist school, Reiki, and after birth work.
Greer told me a very cool story about doing work with the woman who was working out of the office she is currently using. The woman suggested her looking into massage work. And she made the decision to go to massage school right there in the building that she now runs her Healing Center from!
Greer: When I got to massage school, my jaw was on the floor half the time. I was 36 at the time and I finally found what I was really supposed to be doing. So many affirmations told me I was on the right path. I am able to bring with me the tools I've picked up along the way and do everything under the umbrella of a Massage Therapist.
Me: That's awesome! I think it's so beautiful that you've had such a caring heart and have wanted to support people, especially expecting families. What's your favorite part of what you do?
Greer: The reward is when they walk out of here. Seeing the difference from when they walk in, they may be stressed out or something. Even if it's just a short-term transformation to someone that is more at ease, that really rewards me. I love making people feel better. It's my life's work.
Me: It's interesting to me, I mentioned earlier that I've only had one massage before and I knew massage would be nice and feel great but I never put together how massage releases oxytocin which is the opposite of cortisol so you will automatically be less stressed! When I got my massage, it was just a random salon and I was like I think I'm in love with this woman.
Greer: Right right right! There is a transference that can occur because you just made someone feel so good! They are like Oh my god, I love you, I never want to leave. Can I call you tomorrow so we can just chat?!
One of my favorite clients is a first-time client. I love to see a massage "virgin" just be like oh my gosh, what just happened! That was amazing! And you watch people decide that they need to do this more often for themselves. We live in a fast-paced world, so much stress, and we add on Covid or any other traumatic thing and this is a little escape from all of that. You can find a little shelter from the storm!
When people start getting regular massages they really start to get it!
Me: So awesome! So back to your history in birth work, one question I have been asking everybody is, if there was one thing you could change about the maternal standard of care either prenatally or postpartum, what would it be?
Greer: That's a hard question for me because I am a little disconnected from the birth world right now. But the biggest thing is just trusting the mother! I wish the medical birthing community would do that a little more. Trust the maternal instincts a little more, sometimes that can override medicine and science and what a doctor thinks is necessary. I think no one knows better than the mother especially one that has experienced birth. But I am out of the loop so some of the things I had issues with I know have changed since I was in the circles.
Me: Right. I think it has gotten better! When I was interviewing Monika from Althea Midwifery she referenced the quote "A good midwife had skilled hands and knows how to sit on them." And that is what I think is missing in hospital care because they are on a clock a lot of the time.
Greer: Yes and that might be what I want to change. Take the clock off the table. Because in a hospital setting you are on the doctor's timetable. At a home birth, the midwife is going to bust out her knitting needles or go for a walk and leave you alone, and take a nap! That comes back to that respect. Respecting the mother and her wisdom and knowing her body is different than every other body. We all have different timelines for everything.
Me: Right and we want to respect hospitals. Hospital policy is usually there for some reason, it just doesn't always work for every person.
After that we kind of went down a rabbit hole about policy and home birth and how much I love Chloe. I decided not to include all that to respect everyone's time but I'm sure either Greer or I would love to talk to you about it if you have any questions!
Me: So what is one thing that you want every woman to know?
Greer: That was another hard one! Always trust your intuition. We all have intrinsic wisdom and if you are able to cut out the noise around you, you can decide what you want to do. Whether it's what type of birth you want to do or how you raise your children, or when to wean them. Trust your intuition and you'll know the right thing for you and your baby.
Me: Yes, I agree! So my fun question! If you were stranded on a deserted island what 5 things would you HAVE to have with you?
Greer: Love this question. I went really practical, what would I really want! At first, I thought of a lifetime supply of contact lenses but this is what I came up with. A sharp and durable knife to use for whatever. A large vessel at least 5 gallons to carry food and water. A piece of quartz crystal or mirror to start fires. Seeds of my favorite medicinal herbs and flowers and vegetable seeds. A good blanket.
Me: Perfect, I love it. So if you had to describe yourself or Heartwish Healing Center in 3 words, what would those words be?
Greer: I picked words that would describe both. I came up with expansive, enchanted, and resilient!
Me: So good! Is there anything else that you want to add?
Greer: Just want to thank you for this opportunity. It was really fun and different and unexpected! I've never been interviewed like this before and I realized how much I miss birth work so appreciate talking about it!
Me: What is the best way for people to connect with you?
our phone number is 302-727-5501
We have a good presence on Facebook and messenger is great too!
"The moment a child is born, a mother is also"