For the best rest of your life,

Quai teaches sensitive souls

how to use home herbalism, &

compassionate self exploration

to sleep well.

My name is Quai, and it’s pronounced by rhyming it with sky. I’m a community herbalist and psychotherapist who loves the deliciousness of deep sleep.

My offerings are for curious, sensitive, caring people who are looking to improve their sleep.

Rather than quick fixes, my work centers on process and depth.

Feeling into the meaning of dreams is fascinating to me. But most of all I appreciate what really good sleep does for us humans. Life is more fun with true restoration! I know my inspiration and patience are enhanced when I sleep well. It’s fulfilling to watch people’s anxieties improve and their focus take better hold with good rest.

My Sleep-Isn’t-Optional Discovery Story

The first time I learned how deep of a resource sleep was, I sat there fretting in bed. I was early in my career. It was the first job that I loved because it actually fit me. It involved counseling and offering education. But true to many work spaces that are service based, my work load was unwieldy. I was exhausted trying to keep my head above water and fell behind on paperwork. I was working more hours than I was paid for. I couldn’t get support from a supervisor, who seemed to also be managing the unmanageable. Then I had an unexpected medical emergency and was out of work for days. Instead of focusing on recovering, I languished in absolute anxiety. What would happen if my incomplete paperwork was discovered? When I returned to work, my supervisor told me it had. There would be a meeting about it the next day.

This was the night I fretted in bed. Dread and fear consumed me.

And then some wisdom came to me. What was the worst that could happen? I’d get fired. That would have some serious consequences. What was my crisis plan if I did? I wrote that down. It was unsavory to me. Yet also it was a bit more solid in my mind. There was nothing left to do. I asked myself if I could resume the worry in the morning. All I wanted was to get to the other side of this.

I was stunned. Even though one of my worst fears seemed to be happening, I fell asleep. I learned something about the power of intention that night.

That was long before I discovered the resources of herbal remedies and other healing based techniques that I now use. But having experiences that taught me the power of intentions made my being able to work with them harmonious. I didn’t know it at the time, but learning how to slow things down and to be conscientious of how I used rituals and remedies set more in motion for me and deepened how I hold space for others. The intention I had was to sleep so I could face what came the next day. And the next day was indeed hard, even though I didn’t get fired. But it would have been uglier if I hadn’t had enough rest to find my calm. When I look back on that time, it feels so distant. Not only because it was many years back, but because of how many mini transformations I’ve had since then. I’ve come to a way of living where I almost sniff out what is ready to transform.

That particular experience taught me how my environments and relationships are part of my sleep picture. These days, my sleep intentions are more about cultivating energy for what I’m looking forward to diving into!

Why I offer sleep-related work

Some of the most salient experiences in my life have either been stymied or flourished based on the quality of my rest. And I learned through my herbalism practice that improving sleep is foundational to so many other facets of wellness. With most people, it’s truly the best place to start.

Supporting people’s sleep, for me, is about the contagiousness of feeling good. It just really feels good to be well rested!

Doing this sleep support work grew from my own personal, deep needs. I love cooking dinners for people in my life at my home. If we linger and chat into the evening, I can’t help but offer tea to digest our meal together and some herbal goody that sets the tone for relaxation. One of my favorite things to do is browse consignment and used stores for funky, comforting mugs, and trays to serve up these spicy or floral, herbal mixes. Good sleep and getting to it with delight never gets old.

My values

I believe the most peaceful and fulfilling life comes from learning from our lived experiences and being mindful of the lived experiences that are different from ours. I value joy, laughter, pleasure, honesty, and humbleness. Doing as little harm as possible and finding gentleness to address my missteps is something I try to share with others when I hold space for them.

Since I work with herbalism, I am mindful of how I source herbs, essential oils, and herbal remedies.  Not only do I want good quality, but I also want to be responsible by working with ethically harvested plants. This entails both the human labor involved as well as the sustainability of the plants. As much as possible, I want to support small businesses, herbalists of color, queer herbal remedy makers, and women driven entities.

 My Intentions Are

  • To provide information, education, and support as a guide and mentor on ways of getting the best possible restoration, while also learning with my participants along the way. To be on a journey together.
  • To approach this work with an intersectional awareness. This means that although I am producing content for specific people, who tend to be curious and sensitive souls, I am also developing content that aims to not alienate based on identity and experience such as gender, culture, ability, body differences, and spirituality. And where it’s possible, I’ll try to name ways of making resources as affordable as possible. That last one is tricky in terms of honoring the labor behind herbal items and ensuring folks who are producing content are compensated for their work. Much of that work is more involved than is often understood.
  • To grow this business into something that can support other small businesses, as well as herbalists of color, queer herbal remedy makers, and women driven entities.

My sources of learning

Since I believe someone’s training isn’t the entirety of what influences their work, I wanted my bio section to help people know where I’m coming from to hopefully give a better sense of what it might be like to work with me.

Before my formal, school, and program based education, I was a student of observation. My learning goes back to when I was a wee one. I was the kid who quietly watched what happened around me and somehow I learned that when people slow down, like waaay  s l o w   d o w n  things always get clearer. I learned that clarity, as opposed to confusion and stress meant better sleep.

  It was that influence that drives me to address emotional well-being with physical comfort. They go hand in hand. –

I have gravitated toward experiential learning, self study, peer support and receiving mentorship. Formal and more structured programs enhance my ongoing learning, but my most profound learning has come from relationships with peers, mentors, and those for whom I hold space. They all teach me. I received my master’s degree in social work from Hunter College, and have completed post-graduate training in working with the body and nervous system for emotional difficulties like anxiety, stress, and trauma. Some of that training has been in Internal Family Systems (IFS), Sensorimotor training, and psychedelic assisted psychotherapy. These are experiential trainings that taught me that staying in a moment to moment basis offers the deepest healing. I have over 600 hours of herbalism and aromatherapy training. I completed a year at ArborVitae School of Traditional Herbalism, which provided valuable knowledge for me to learn how to learn about working with herbs. Prior to that, I did a nine month course called Interprofessional Program in Integrative Healthcare through Mount Sinai. This helped me understand how health care providers see modalities, such as herbalism and to discover where a gap is between home, self care and medical services. I also trained in the NADA protocol. The NADA protocol is a non-verbal adjunctive therapy for emotional trauma, mental health, and addiction that calms the nervous system. That protocol uses the placement of acupuncture needles (or ear seeds that are held with adhesive to points) on the ears. Working with NADA, herbs, somatics and aromatherapy has taught me about how healing happens beyond narratives.

Additionally, I regularly attend herbalism workshops and participate in herbal mentorship.