“I never cease to be amazed by the way life continues to unfold. And if I only remain open to the possibilities, I continue to find hidden gems in every unfolding. Even the most difficult losses in my life have led to growth and discovery. As I look back over more than half a century of life now, it seems so clear that each and every event/circumstance was leading me to right here and now. Healing Icons has revealed itself to me in a similar way. In early 2022, Heidi, my dear friend and yoga student of almost 2 decades, invited me to her art studio for lunch. As we shared laughs and stories over a delicious meal, Heidi informed me of her plans to retire in the coming year. She explained that she wanted someone to continue the healing work through her non-profit that has helped so many people over the past 25+ years. Our conversation from that luncheon continued to echo in my mind for a couple of weeks. I reminisced about the years when I was leading yoga and meditation retreats for women with cancer and how much Heidi and Healing Icons had enhanced the experiences of those attending the retreats. And I reflected on my own healing journey that was rooted in my creative expression, illuminated by my yoga and meditation practices. After moving through my initial fears and doubts, I realized that everything was pointing me in this direction. Honoring the legacy of Healing Icons and helping shape its evolution to move forward in service of all beings, is my intention.”
Pamela was born into a family of great love and affection, though it was a time when emotions (especially those considered less desirable, like anger and grief) were not openly expressed. When she was just seven-years-old, her grandfather, who lived at home with her, died of cancer. She had so many unanswered questions. How could God let this happen to such a wonderful man? Where is he now? Her father, an accomplished commercial artist, drew her little hand-lettered and illustrated cards, which made her smile, but these were not used to communicate and understand the grieving process. As was true for so many at that time, these questions weren’t discussed; they were simply buried deep inside, and her grief was largely a solitary process.
Nine years later, arriving home after a date, Pamela was greeted by her mother at the front door, and knew immediately that something was wrong. Her mother struggled to get the words out, and Pamela needed them to be repeated, just to grasp the reality of the bad news that her best friend had been killed in a car accident. All the big questions flooded her mind and heart once again. All the whys, the how-could-it-be questions, returned, but despite the shared grief of her family and friends, she found herself largely alone, crying in her room, until once again she put away her unanswered questions and got on with her life.
A few years later, majoring in studio art in college, working in sculpture and painting, Pam began to understand the ways that a focus on the visual arts helped her to connect to a joy deep within herself, a way to bring out buried joy, and deal with buried sorrow. Art continued to be important as she entered a period in her life marked by stratospheric highs and nearly bottomless lows. She met a wonderful man and became engaged, but 3 months before her wedding day, her father died of cancer. A year and a half later, she gave birth to her first child, in the same hospital where her mother lay dying of cancer, passing away one week after holding her new grandson in a hospital bed.
Through it all, art continued to be a passion and a means for processing events in life. When she became pregnant with her first child in 1999, Pamela found a complementary passion in yoga and meditation, which when coupled with creating art, led her to profound healing. Changing her breath, while using both movement and stillness, gave her even greater access to the depths of her buried emotions. These modalities gave her new ways to process, understand and express those internal stories so that she was no longer burdened by them, but rather liberated.
Pamela continues her commitment to her daily practice, and evolved into a teacher as well. She has been teaching yoga and meditation as a means to access inner peace and healing for over 2 decades. She co-founded the Sakhi Yoga School in 2011. In addition to leading 200-500 hour yoga teacher certification programs, she also offers workshops, weekly private sessions, and classes. Having served on the ParaYoga Leadership Council in the area of Sangha, she has a long history of serving the community, including serving on the Board of Directors for The Retreat Project, and The Libby Ross Foundation. Over the years, Pamela has also taught yoga and meditation to students from pre-school age through high school and has co-led yoga retreats for women cancer survivors in New York and South Carolina. She is the author of a long-running inspirational blog and has spoken on a weekly talk-radio program, in a segment on lifestyle and well-being.
She brings to her practice and teaching a background in ballet, fitness, and physiology, including choreographing and leading 5 nationally released fitness videos, for The FIRM. Pamela views her entire life as her practice –in her case, a practice of being not only a yoga teacher, but also a yoga student, busy wife, mother, stepmother, and community volunteer, and artist.
Pamela Meriwether is certified by the Yoga Alliance as an Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher at the 500-hour level. She continues her learning as a dedicated student of Pandit Rajmani Tigunait, PhD. Pamela is a certified Vishoka Meditation Teacher, a ParaYoga Teacher, a Four Desires Trainer, an Ayurvedic Yoga Specialist, and a certified yoga teacher for cancer patients, through Y4C.