Self-Love & Relationships

How Attending a Sister Healing Circle Helped Me on My Self Love Journey

Admittedly, before meeting my amazing friend Wilize, I had never heard of, been to, or thought of a sister healing circle. When she told me about her idea to start hosting them, I imagined a group of women sitting in a circle crying and that’s kinda what I got but it was so much more than that. Here’s my experience of my first sister healing circle and what it taught me about self love. 

We met in a park in Los Angeles about 15 miles from my house. If you know anything about LA traffic, I was quite frustrated by the time I arrived. After sitting in the hot sun in traffic for over an hour, the last thing I wanted to do was sit in the dirt and talk about my feelings with a bunch of women I didn’t know. When I arrived Wilize had water and teas waiting for us and the women began arriving and placing their mats and blankets on the ground to sit. Wilize started with a sound bowl that actually was quite calming. The ladies all introduced themselves and we began. During the sister healing circle, Wilize lead us with questions and short stories and from there we gave our thoughts, opinions and shared our own personal stories of love, heartbreak and just the everyday bs that we as young black women experienced on a day to day basis living in the city of angels. 

I kept quiet as most of the women shared their stories or nodded my head in agreement. There were a few times when I wanted to speak but something kept me from doing so.When it comes to my friends, I can pretty easily open up, with strangers it’s not always so easy and often I find myself being extremely shy around people I don’t know. However, it was something about watching the other women who knew absolutely nothing about each other, be so vulnerable with one another that completely inspired me. 

After listening to so many of the other women’s stories, I was able to open up about some of my own trauma and realize some of the situations I had been in that I had buried deep inside myself was still affecting me. I found myself doing exactly what I assumed everyone else would be doing, crying. I allowed tears to flow as I told the story about a past relationship with an ex who was suicidal and extremely mentally abusive.

The ladies opened their hearts to me and listened to my story without judgement. Several of the women chimed in about similar experiences which made me feel so much more understood.

While each one of us came from different cities, states and some even countries, we all were able to relate on at least one thing. We opened our hearts and completely allowed ourselves to be vulnerable and honest. It was beautiful. 

By the end of the day we had all bore our hearts, shed at least one tear and felt an overall calm wash over us. When I got home that evening I reflected on the event. While few of us knew each other personally, we all were able to relate to each other. I thought about how so many of the relationship stories those women told were so relatable and how if I hadn’t, if any of us had not shared our stories how we would not have been able to reach that level of healing. So often we keep things bottled up because we don’t want to add to anyone else’s drama. We bury our own feelings to protect those around us and only end up hurting in the end. 

At the sister healing circle I learned that self-love is also loving your sister. It’s listening to someone else’s story and sharing your own because you never know who could benefit from it and who may be going through the same thing. Self-love is not selfish. Loving self oftentimes means being able to love others and you are never fully capable of doing that if you are holding on to pain. 

From that day I attended several more of Wilize’s healing circles and each time I felt a little more transformed. From the conversation we had on her living room couch about the possibility of her holding a sister healing circle, she went on to host them in different cities, states and countries and continues to give women of color a safe space to share their feelings and experience self-love while expressing it for women who look like them.

Have you ever attended a sister healing circle?

to find out about healing circles in your area visit

Love & Light


By Ashley Renee

Ashley Renee is a soul food enthusiast, sometimes plant based, spoken word poet, who doesn't trust boxed macaroni or cats. To keep up with her head over to her twitter and Instagram @ashleyreneepoet also check out her website.

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