69 | theTYPEAhippie Podcast | ChiCast: Surviving Sexual Assault (Ksenija Simmons)

January 4, 2018

I am looking forward to meeting Ksenija because our souls are already connected, we just need to be in the same physical place at the same time. She provides her experience as someone who has lived in multiple places and has had a wealth of unique lived experiences.

My passion for yoga came from a journey of finding healing in my own story of experiencing trauma. The first time I stepped onto my mat for a Holy Yoga class I knew something was different. As any beginner would, I experienced the uncomfortable and strange new sensations of poses I had never done before but I primarily felt a sense of freedom that had not been brought to life within me for years. Holy Yoga began to awaken me to God and to myself in a new and refreshing way. This practice brought me release, stillness and integrated my body, heart, mind and spirit into a wholeness I had never experienced before. For me, it became a way of worshiping Jesus on my mat, finding the surrendering of my heart, reconnection to lost places in my body and laying bare the spaces of my soul I did not yet understand. Each practice was unique and brought a different kind of healing than the one before. I wholeheartedly believe that using the modality of yoga and combining it with the expansion of our breath, scripture, prayer and meditation, alongside our movement, brings restoration to one's being.  Coming to a class does not mean bringing your perfect self… in fact, it’s quite the opposite. This is a place of bringing our brokenness, shedding our masks and finding our true selves. Simply showing up is enough. You are free to be you, while I get to be free to be me. Here we are not afraid of the cracks because it's in the cracks that light comes in and where, in return, our light shines through. Thank you for trusting me to lead you as I am led by the One who knows the needs of each one of us, thank you for your willingness to grow in this practice as I grow with you and thank you for the grace extended for me to continue to be a student right alongside you. I look forward to seeing this dream become a reality of authentic community and meeting each other right where life has us, while still holding on to the hope of experiencing life to its fullest. 
Ksenija was raised in central and eastern Europe until the age of 19 when she moved to America in 2002. A child to missionary parents brought her a diverse, rich and ever-changing environment - from various cultures, art, languages, festivities and beautiful countryside to war-torn communities, human trafficking, refugees and the desperately poor. This exposure cultivated compassion in her and a deeply rooted faith that God is the one who brings healing to the broken. This passion to bring a safe space for others to find their wholeness and restoration intensified as she began the journey to finding freedom in her own trauma. Now she has the joy of doing so through achieving her 500 hr Holy Yoga Masters certification, Trauma Sensitive and Touch certification and is currently in process of getting her Holy Yoga Therapy and Holy Yoga Kids certification. 
To connect with Ksenija:
* FB: Ksenija Simmons or Holy Yoga Columbia

* IG: @ksenija_simmons or @holyyogacolumbia

68 | theTYPEAhippie Podcast | ChiCast: Surviving Ovarian Cancer (Christina Mensah)

December 28, 2017

I knew that Christina Mensah was a cool chick the first time we were texting. She extended grace to me when I was going back and forth (aka being indecisive) and had such an easy way of being. I'm looking forward to meeting her IRL and it was so much fun and inspiring to speak with her about her lived experience with surviving ovarian cancer.

Christina Mensah is a former NYC public school teacher turned doula and Impact Entrepreneur. She aspires to bring out the best in other women and empower them to see their worth. She is the mama of two inquisitive and bright daughters and married to a BOMB husband. 
To connect with Christina:
* IG: @thismamasgotsole and @mymommytribe

67 | theTYPEAhippie Podcast | ChiCast: Surviving a Toxic Romantic Relationship (Marcy Valle)

December 22, 2017

I've known Marcy for several years. We met because we both had a love for health, wellness, yoga and fitness while I lived in Las Vegas. She's a bright light in the community and her smile is contagious. I was excited to speak to her about her experience surviving a toxic romantic relationship.

Marcy Valle is a lover of language, life and dreams. An old soul, she works daily in the Solar Energy field hoping to make a difference in our world and has shed a couple professionally demanding lives before this. She is first and foremost a new Yoruba priestess and a yogi. The first goal in life, is to cultivate joy, heal, and bring healing. Her life normally includes a lot of music, yoga, dancing and writing with the hopes of publishing a lot more in years to come. Currently, she's in semi-seclusion for a year of introspection. Carrying a relentless mending heart her life is nothing short of passionate, imperfect, and all but ordinary. She's mom to two little humans and a cat in heaven. 
To connect with Marcy:
* Publications:

66 | theTYPEAhippie Podcast | ChiCast: Surviving Poverty (Christina Aldan)

December 14, 2017

Christina Aldan is an amazing human whose resilience, grit and fire are inspiring. She is does not fit into any boxes and her authenticity is a breath of fresh air in a world where transparency, authenticity and vulnerability are not the norm. I look forward to connecting with her IRL someday soon.

Christina Aldan is a TEDx speaker, trainer, and digital advertising consultant whose boutique agency, LG Designs, offers businesses brand consulting and creative content for everyday media. With over a decade of experience in the digital advertising realm, Christina is highly regarded for her approach to business, partnering with clients to find unique strategies that ensure their advertising goals are met. Christina builds connections through her keynote addresses, training workshops, and technological education. She uses these tools to help individuals and businesses cultivate value in everyday media. She has presented trainings for the Microsoft MVP community, among others. She also served as Chief Marketing Officer for PrayerSpark and as Marketing Coordinator for Starmark1. Christina uses her charisma and expertise to inspire others by mentoring women in business like herself. She also has sat on state and local boards supporting women in tech, entrepreneurship, and children with learning disabilities.

She is the recipient of the Las Vegas Women in Tech Community Service Award, the Distinguished Woman of the Year Award in STEM, and the Stevie Award for the category of Women Helping Women. LG Designs was voted by ACQ5 Magazine’s voters as Company of the Year (Nevada Brand Management) and Nevada Gamechanger of the Year.

To connect with Christina:

* Website: www.ChristinaAldan.com


65 | theTYPEAhippie Podcast | ChiCast: Surviving Losing a Parent (Tonia McIntosh)

December 6, 2017

I love Tonia. We've known each other for years when we both lived in Las Vegas. She attended tons of my Yin and hot yoga classes when I first began teaching yoga at a local hot yoga studio and we became fast friends. Spending time before or after class catching up. We always made time to celebrate birthdays and life together over meals. She's a facinating, kind, loving and tolerant human. Her quiet strength is remarkable. 

Tonia McIntosh was born and raised in Michigan and later moved to Las Vegas where she currently resides. It was here that she received her bachelor’s degree in graphic design from the International Academy of Design and Technology. Tonia is an explorer of all forms of self-expression including acting, painting, drawing, dancing and writing. Although she loves many forms of expression, the written and spoken word feels the most like home to her. Tonia’s message is one that includes a heavy emphasis on self-love and care. Navigating her way through her own grieving process after the death of her mother has helped her to see the value in making the most of the time she has. She believes it’s important to nourish and grow relationships - especially the one you have with yourself.

To connect with Tonia:


64 | theTYPEAhippie Podcast | ChiCast: Surviving Domestic Violence (Michael Smith)

November 30, 2017

Michael Smith is overwhelmingly an easy going man despite his life experiences. He has an easy laugh and adores the people in his life. We met for the first time over coffee shortly after the 2016 Presidential election and had a great time connecting over racism, the election results, life and essential oils. 

Michael Smith was born and raised in Grand Rapids, MI and is a descendant of the original Black settlers

to the Central Michigan area. He graduated early from Creston High School at the age of 17 and entered
the US Army in March of 1983. He served on Active Duty in the US Army for eight years and participated
in or supported the following: Operation Urgent Fury (Grenada); Operation Desert Shield; Operation
Desert Storm; and Operation Provide Comfort. He received an Honorable Discharge from Active Duty
and immediately joined Washtenaw County Government and worked in Human Resources and the
Foster Grandparent Program before coming to the County Department of Veterans Affairs. Michael
began as a County Veteran Service Officer and advanced to the Veteran Services Analyst position and
was eventually appointed the Director by the Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners on May 18,

While working in the County, he remained a member of the Army National Guard and US Army Reserves
until he retired from the Reserves in April 2004 at the rank of Sergeant First Class. Michael also pursued
his education during that time. He graduated from Washtenaw Community College and obtained his
Undergraduate and Graduate degrees from Eastern Michigan University where he studied Public
Administration and Political Science. He is the single parent of one daughter who just completed her
sophomore year of college and the proud grandfather of one granddaughter. He is a member of
American Legion Post #31 in Chelsea, MI.

To connect with Michael:

* Email: smithmgjr@gmail.com


63 | theTYPEAhippie Podcast | ChiCast: Surviving Being an Immigrant (Salem Afangideh)

November 23, 2017
This brave and bold young woman has been practicing law for three years and she's only 23. That means she has grit, determination and doesn't scare easily. And yet, there is a soft side to Salem that I wish others would see. She walks us through how she's been able to survive being a stranger in a land that isn't always loving.
Salem Afangideh is a lawyer,  a yoga instructor, and chief space creator at THRIVE African Girl - a hub for African women.  She is dedicated to using her voice and her power through law to come alongside immigrants, survivors of human trafficking and minorities building businesses and non profits. In the wellness space she is redefining what it means to be a yogi and teaching women to care for themselves. Her life goal is to love well and build well. She loves to connect with new friends through her Facebook and Instagram pages at Yoga Lawyer Salem. And on her website on SalemAfangideh.com. Her new podcast about the African experience is the THRIVE Table Podcast available on iTunes and SoundCloud. 
To connect with Salem:
* Facebook: Yoga Lawyer Salem
* Instagram: @salem_afangideh
* Podcast: THRIVE Table Podcast

theTYPEAhippie Podcast | ChiCast: One Year Anniversary (Chidimma Ozor)

November 23, 2017

Where we have been together over the last year.


To connect with Chidimma:

* Email: chidimma@thetypeahippie.com

* IG: @thetypeahippie

* FB: www.facebook.com/typeahippie


62 | theTYPEAhippie Podcast | ChiCast: Surviving Multiple Sexual Assaults (Rachel Bertner)

November 16, 2017

Rachel Bertner is one of those people that makes you want to be a better version of yourself not only for your community, but for yourself. She's definitely a member of the badass brigade and has allowed her pain to cultivate her passion with working with other survivors to empower them on their path of recovery as well as the perpetrators of sexual assault via the healing therapeutic practice of yoga and other modalities.

Rachel Bertner is a spiritual counselor, yoga teacher, energy educator and healer who specializes in working with women to heal after trauma.  Her own healing from rape, molestation and abuse found resolve in alternative modalities/methods after over a decade of failed western focused attempts. It is her passion to share and educate others about how and why a mind/body connection, results in healing beyond the self. Working exclusively with the release and reset of the mind, body and spirit after trauma, Rachel teaches further to the contemplation of what it means to release the energy of violence or emotional disturbance and recognize it's void. Rachel has taught/teaches at universities, high schools, prisons, rehabs, transitional living homes and works exclusively one on one to help humans understand the energy of their lives and our lives as a collective. Passionate about empowering a collaboration over competition mentality that together, we can change anything - Rachel stands as source of being inspired by the type of adult she needed. Her personal platform centers around empowering accountability, education, progressive change and eye contact with a genuine smile. She connects the disconnected and is committed to finding wholeness in the holes for a reconnection and reintroduction to a life worth living.
To connect with Rachel:

61 | theTYPEAhippie Podcast | ChiCast: Surviving Drugs and Brain Cancer (Anna Feagans)

November 10, 2017

Anna Feagans is quite honestly one of my favorite people - and we haven't met yet! Her spirit is one of survival and she has an authenticity that many wish they had. Her heart is open and she loves being of service to others. Her devotion to the traumatic brain injury (TBI) community is beautiful and inspires many.

Anna is no stranger to surviving. She is actually well acquainted with it. On January 31, 2006 she hit rock bottom from years of drug abuse and has been clean for almost 12 years. Day by day she has found her sobriety and doesn't normally talk about the years she's been clean but sticks with the mantra of "today I'm clean". Then in March of 2013, doctors found a 4 cm tumor on her right frontal lobe and after a craniotomy and removal of said brain tumor she was diagnosed with brain cancer. Anna believes in the deep healing of breath, laughter, hope and as a 500hr certified instructor, the practice of yoga. She relies heavily on her faith and the power of laughing in midst of pain, suffering or trials that come with survival. After years of digging into the hard spaces and sifting through what works and what doesn't she is just now discovering what her "new normal" is. She believes in the process, not the outcome; the journey, not the destination. She is now on that beautiful, but painful journey of discovering who she is beyond her survival and learning to thrive with kindness, love, laughter and grace in the midst of it.

To connect with Anna:

Email: annalaura.fullofgrace@gmail.com

FB: www.facebook.com/anna.feagans


To donate to Grey Matters of Southwest Missouri:

Grey Matters of Southwest Missouri exists to provide education, support and financial assistance to those in the Southwest Missouri area impacted by brain cancer, tumors, and other brain traumas.

Website: https://greymattersswmo.com/