One Woman's Journey from Poverty to Inner Riches
In this memoir of upward mobility through the unexpected route of yoga, a young African American woman signs up for lessons in yoga and clean eating as a sign that she has now entered the middle class. The Healing is Saeeda Hafiz’s personal, painfully honest account of facing the inner demons fed by the domestic violence, addiction, and poverty she witnessed as a child.
Graduating, getting established in your career, and dating are things many middle-class women expect to do and take for granted. Yet when your parents don’t support you and you have siblings in prison, those milestones seem monumental. What does growing up poor do to your self-esteem? How do patterns of stress and family violence, poor diet and poor health continue to affect you even after you escape to a higher income bracket? And what can one woman do to turn around the cycle of intergenerational suffering? Hafiz gives a frank account of the anxiety and rewards of becoming “middle class” through a complete change of diet, both physical and mental, and adopting habits such as eating wholesome food and doing yoga. While her peers pursue one kind of African American dream by climbing the corporate ladder, Hafiz finds meaning in learning to cook macrobiotic food and practice meditation. By doing so, she recovers from chronic health conditions and heals from the family trauma she has inherited.
Saeeda Hafiz is a graduate of Temple University in Philadelphia. She spent her twenties working in management, believing mainstream success was her key out. After discovering the power of yoga to transform, she took a leap of faith to train to become a yoga teacher and wellness expert. She studied yoga at the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centers and Ashrams and holistic nutrition at Natural Gourmet Institute in New York City and keeps a busy schedule as a yoga teacher and speaker. For the past twenty years she has held leadership positions in the YMCA, the San Francisco Unified School District, and other organizations to bring a more holistic understanding of physical and mental wellness to a diverse population.