Leilani Wong Navar is a licensed acupuncturist and herbalist with a Masters of Science in Oriental Medicine. She treats patients at Meridian Wellness Center. When she educates women on optimizing their reproductive health, she incorporates Chinese Medicine knowledge as well as other traditions of dietary and herbal therapies.
What was your intro into the Fertility Awareness Method (FAM)?
A naturopath taught me Fertility Awareness for birth control when I was 18. I had asked several doctors and holistic medicine practitioners about natural birth control and had heard only, "abstinence," "condoms," and "the pill's not that bad," so when I learned about Fertility Awareness I was surprised, and thrilled! I knew right away I wanted to teach it one day.
What program did you train with to become a Fertility Awareness Educator (FAE)? What were 3 highlights of that experience?
The Justisse College. 3 highlights were:
Learning about holistic reproductive health approaches and how they connect to all other aspects of health
Learning about the history and current social context of birth control (fascinating!)
Practicing the Justisse Method approach to see clients through their whole learning process.
What is one feature of the female body that amazes you? Can you explain more and tell us why?
The connection between the Heart and the Uterus; so many of us have felt the intimate connection between our hormonal cycles, our menstrual periods, our fertility, pregnancy, and childbirth -- and our minds, emotions, and interpersonal connections.
In Chinese Medicine, there's a direct "Heart-Uterus" connection that I think can shed some light on this. We treat menstrual cycle issues by addressing the "channels" through which Qi and Blood flow. Any of the channels can be involved in a menstrual cycle issue, but often it has to do with a channel that directly connects the Uterus and the Heart.
In Chinese Medicine, the Heart not only pumps the Blood, but also houses the Shen (spirit or consciousness), and is associated with Joy / Overexcitement / Anxiety / Lack of Joy, and is also related to Connection with others.
At its best, the Heart is free of excessive distractions and desires so that it can hear the "music of the Heavens" and drum out the beat for the whole body to follow.
All of this is important for female reproductive health -- have you felt it?
What do you wish all females knew before their menarche?
Your cycle is terrific! And so are you. Getting to know yourself and what happens throughout your cycle can help you be happier and healthier.
What is your favourite health-related book/podcast/resource and why?
I truly cannot pick just one. In the realm of female sexuality, I just read and loved, Come as You Are, by Emily Nagoski. I love this book.
If you couldn't get it and I had to sum it up for you, I'd say:
"There's nothing wrong with you. Everything about your magnificent sexuality is normal, and a lot of it is pretty well-understood. You can indeed love, heal, and explore your own sexuality as it is, and have really satisfying sex."