Posts tagged ancestors
Lessons Learned from My Curanderismo Lineage

I come from a line of healers.

We created Dora's as a way to honor my grandmothers and to help teach the beautiful traditions of Curanderismo. One of the main tenets of this healing practice is that Mother Earth provides us with everything that we need to heal ourselves. And it is up to us to become our own healers.

Growing up, my tias would tell stories of my great grandmother Josefina and how people would wait in line for hours to get a healing from her. She was what they call a "full" curandera. Some curandera/os specialize in midwifery, some in herbs, and others in mediumship. Josefina was gifted in all areas.

Her guest house was repurposed into a healing center. She had a large old school apothecary cabinet where she stored various herbs and remedies. In the main room was a makeshift nursing station, as well as a divination table where she read tarot cards, and used a crystal ball for scrying. And of course, she had an altar for prayer and ceremonies.

I always loved hearing stories about Josefina and her healing practice.

She died before I was born, and I would always bug my grandmother Dora to tell me the stories over and over again. She would always reply, “Oh Mija, I already told you everything. " But every time she would sit me on her lap and tell me again.


My grandmother Dora was trained in the curandera ways but did not fully practice. She only used her gifts on family and friends. Whenever someone needed help, she would go into her bedroom (where she kept her altar) and tell us to not to disturb her under any circumstances. Of course, I would always peek into her room to find her beautiful altar with candles, herbs and St. Jude candles.

Dora traveled to Mexico regularly to practice with a curandero and on one occasion she brought my father. He took one look at my dad and told him, "You have the don." He invited my dad to apprentice with him, but he declined. I remember him telling me he just wanted a normal life and that to say yes to the gift is a lifelong duty that is not to be taken lightly. Of course, my dad still has the gift, he just chose not to use it in service. My dad is very psychic, and I believe he could have been a full curandero like his great grandmother was.

When my parents married, it threw the whole family into a tailspin. My mom was from Idaho, and she was white. Needless to say, my grandparents were not happy. My dad was the only person in the family to marry outside of our culture. It just wasn't done.

Slowly but surely, my mom and Dora became extremely close. She still called her guera, but as a silly term of endearment. My mother was also born with the gift. She comes from a line of intuitives and eventually Dora became her spiritual mentor. When my grandmother became ill, my mom was her caregiver, which prompted her to become a nurse and a healer in her own right.

Dora was the backbone of our family. She was kind, but stoic. She had a good life, but there was also a sense of sadness in her. She always reminded us to take care of our skin, and she loved to drink cheap beer on Fridays at 6pm sharp.

Like all of us, she was perfectly imperfect. One of her favorite lines was, “Mija, you don’t have to be the best. Just be the best you can be.”

In our modern world, we push full throttle towards the future. But we also need to pull in the teachings from our ancestors in order to step into the future from a place of inner truth and knowing.

Thus, this is the goal we’ve set for ourselves: to create beauty products that are made with ingredients that are all natural and healthy for you, inside and out. We infuse all of our products with reiki, self-love and our mantras:

Live well. Be happy. Give Back. Know your truth. Heal yourself.

We hope you enjoy the products as much as we enjoy making them. Click here to receive 10% off your first order.

With love and gratitude, from our family to yours.

Martha &

Live well. Be happy. Give back. Know your truth. Heal yourself.
— Dora's Apothecary