Weekend Medicine Retreat
Week-long Healing Intensive
Rita’s gatherings are a spontaneously inspired response to participants and rigorously structured settings that enhance safety and connectivity, deepen education and promote resourcing to explore personal issues and group dynamics. They highlight the need for independence, dependence and interdependence.
Preparation for journeying can include somatic meditation, diad work, experiential practices, Compassionate Inquiry, reflection on music and poetry, physical explorations, and group sharing and communication.
Her vocabulary is vast. She draws on her own direct knowledge and that of her mentors: the late Carol Anne Bickerstaff, Gabor Maté and Sharon Stanley (and many others) and incorporates her years of attending personal development workshops. With her background in dance, theatre and performance she creates group learning and exploration is that is unique, respectful and transformative.
If you want to expand your consciousness, care for your self, family and community and be an agent of change on this planet, consider attending one of her offerings. She is dedicated to the humane and caring practices that honour the direct knowledge and wisdom of participants and this extraordinary earth with are privileged to live on. She encourages a thoughtful lifestyle that preserves the environment and honours diverse cultures, races, genders and inheritances.
For more information and to be in a curated group, please contact Mel Parsons at email@example.com
“Wise Night is truly a very special and life changing experience. Rita curates the most beautiful, authentic, sacred and safe space for healing and self-inquiry. She brings her full and complete presence in combination with her open heart to ensure every participant feels seen, heard and supported as they enter a realm of vulnerability and transformation. Rita has a rare and unique ability to “tap in” and guide participants through their layers in order to bring forward their true essence of self. Throughout this journey, I was able to be witness to my own ego and the “story” of what I tell myself I am and need to be. I experienced an ego death of sorts and freedom from my own conditioning through absolute trust and surrender to the experience. It was magical!”
– Wise Night, Group Participant 2020
Rita is creator of and lead facilitator for Kind and Wise Nights, Brilliant Healing medicine retreats and transformative week-long healing intensives. She is the weaver of somatic relational trauma-informed facilitation, attachment education, embodied practices with the therapeutic and ceremonial use of healing medicines. She blends humour and rigour in a conscious way and practices kindness and is humbled by what it takes to decolonize the mind and body. She is profoundly grateful to be surrounded by a dedicated team of humans. If she weren’t doing what she is doing, she would be working for Amnesty International. Her favourite festival is the Fairy Tales Queer Film Festival.
Deirdre’s devotion to integrating ceremony with therapeutic models comes from early heartbreak, relational gaps and many labours. Encouraging gentle re:learning then re:experiencing deeper truths, she transforms body:spirit awareness into relational service, wholeness and love. Tending to our hearts and to one another is key in her approach. Deirdre’s offerings are rooted in: core shamanic practice, land-based ancestral teachings, 20+ years in death and hospice, ancient myths and lineages, pilgrimage experiences from 2013-2019, cosmic play, mediumship, specialized kinesiology, ceremony, somatic relational trauma-sensitive spiritual/therapeutic practice & care. It is an honour and pleasure to work alongside Rita for so many years.
Mel began her own healing journey more then two decades ago to better understand her human experience through a holistic lens with a focus on the link between unprocessed trauma and physical pain. Her passion for healing arts has lead her to both study and experience numerous different modalities including consciousnesses expanding medicines. Mel has been cultivating her relationship with Rita for many years as a client, assistant, student and friend. Somatic Relational Trauma and Psychedelic informed therapy has become the crucible in which she will continue to forge her own healing path as well as assist others on theirs.
Sandi has been practicing within the holistic, transpersonal, and healing arts for over 25 years assisting clients dealing with anxiety, depression, emotional regulation, self-esteem, life transitions, and habitual behaviours generated by beliefs, attitudes and past experiences. Today, Sandi incorporates somatic mindfulness, providing a safe, non-judgemental space within the foundation of a relational somatic approach to discovery and healing. Sandi brings authentic and compassionate care to clients, using a blend of approaches, person-centered, body-oriented, and mindfulness. Sandi facilitates trauma informed, somatic, mindful and compassionate meditation groups, is an award-winning filmmaker whose communities include LGBTQ2I+ Herland, for women in film, where she mentors filmmakers and writers on their creative path.
Anne is honoured to be part of Rita’s team of assistants and to support groups and individuals in their healing work. Anne has come to this work through her own healing journey, as a client of Rita’s, other practitioners and teachers, as well as her own profound experiences of therapeutic medicine work. Having witnessed her own growth and expansion has inspired Anne to deepen her knowledge and she is being mentored by Rita and Deirdre, as a student of somatic relational trauma-informed practices for psychedelic assisted therapy. Anne’s desire to support people in their own growth and empowerment has evolved into a fulfilling career as a life coach.
A techie by trade, Tim has a passion for medicine and the healing path. Born in NWT, Tim grew up in BC and was drawn to his own healing journey after his struggles with addiction. His first experiences were with Ayahuasca under the guidance of Dr. Gabor Maté on one of the famous retreats, similar to those featured on the CBC documentary The Jungle Cure. There, Tim learned that it is possible to heal and medicine can be the door that allows you to see the truth(s) about yourself.
Tim continued his medicine exploration in Alberta where he help to organize local retreats. The somatic work with Rita has confirmed that if one can slow down and pay attention, then we discover that the body has the wisdom to heal. Tim is proud that his rich lived experience allows for him to relate to those from all walks of life, working through all manner of struggles. Tim’s most dangerous addiction now is sky-diving and his son Declan.
Born in Ontario, Ken came from a happy and stable home, and had all the privileges associated with a middle class white male upbringing. Ken has struggled with issues of self-image, self-worth, adequacy, sexuality, & anger management. Ken realizes there is always trauma to work through, regardless of upbringing; no upbringing is perfect. Ken has practiced meditation off and on for 20 years. Since Ken’s first experience with ayahuasca he has explored a wide gamut of other medicines (Iboga, etc). Ken is Rita’s husband, and an accomplished playwright theatre editor, business consultant & visual artist.
Karen knows what it’s like to be surrounded by others and still feel marrow-deep loneliness. Through this sacred work with Rita, Karen has experienced the transformation from embodied despair into connection and belonging, making it possible to welcome home her own aching heart, and the hearts of others too. Karen holds reverence for the spiritual tradition of medicine ceremonies and the ancestral debt paid in advance for her life. When she isn’t supporting Rita’s team of authentic humans, Karen makes art, offers peer support to families with mental health struggles and runs an online self-care business. She has two adult children and an Italian grey-chi named Jackson.
Crystal has been on her own journey of exploration and healing for many years now. From experiencing the depth of restoration and vulnerability in herself and those in healing medicine circles with her, Crystal felt the pull to deepen her work and in addition to being client, put on the hat of practitioner and assistant through completing Somatic Relational Trauma-informed Practices for Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy with Rita. Crystal is humbled and honoured to partner with others on their journeys and knows first hand the healing that connection and community bring. Her approach is informed by the medicine she finds in nature, poetry, her smallest family members and this beautiful community of humans here. She looks forward to connecting with you.