So, first things first…the basics. I’m LaDonna Calhoun, owner of Archer Soapworks & Apothecary. I hold a handful of titles, from Certified Surgical First Assist, neurosurgery specialist, holistic health practitioner, herbalist, and student of naturopathic medicine. At first glance, some of those can seem contradictory, but ever since I took my first “real” herbalism class, a weekend intensive in Austin, Texas, I’ve been explaining to people where my heart really is- that strange gap between ‘conventional medicine’ and ‘naturopathic health’. I cannot stand the term ‘alternative medicine’, and I joke that your health isn’t supposed to be treated like opposing dodgeball teams. We are meant to work together, and that concept is what has driven my careers. I believe my balance between nature-based health principles and science-focused conventional medicine makes me a more effective, and safer practitioner. It gives me a keen grasp of anatomy, and how the body systems interact with each other, and the awe at what nature provides.
Naturopathy is based on the belief that the human body is capable of healing itself, we just need to provide the building blocks it needs. These include good, healthy foods, exercise, herbs, clean air, safe water, and the interaction between spirit and soul. In fact, in addition to being a naturopath and an herbalist, I am also an alchemist. Alchemy principles include the concept of ‘spirit’ along with body and mind. It’s not enough to just be physically well, or mentally stable, we must also be spiritually well. This can come in many different forms, and look one way for one person, and another for the next. It’s a beautifully simple and complex system.
A Del Mar College Surgical Technology graduate, I spendt eight years in surgery before returning to school to obtain my surgical assisting degree from Madisonville Community College. Six years into a neurosurgery specialty, I began my programs with Trinity School of Natural Health, which include Certified Natural Health Professional, Certified Holistic Health Practitioner, Master Herbalist, and will culminate in my Doctor of Naturopathy designation at the end of the year.
So, what can I do for you? A typical consult covers a base-line assessment of your current health terrain. We look at what the complaints are, what diagnoses may be at play in your history, and what we can do to start working towards a healthy balance. This can cover a gamut of modalities beyond herbalism, like muscle response testing, assessment of physical observations, pH testing, flower essences, and essential oils. Education is also close to my heart- we began offering herbalism and essential oil classes quickly after opening our doors, helping the community become better versed in how to utilize plants safely and effectively.
The best way to find us is to stop by our retail location at Six Points, next to Bleu Frog Mercantile. A center for commerce in it’s heyday, the area has all the nuances of past and present, history and progress. You can find everything from sinus rinses and essential oils, to bath bombs and skin-nourishing lotions. Spend some time chatting with our knowledgeable sales associates, or watch the next batch of lotion being made in house- a facet that sets us apart from the rest. Home grown to the extreme, we are hands-on through the entire process, producing quality products, in house, right in the heart of Corpus Christi.
I hope you are able to find the best practitioners there are to offer here at the Health & Holistic Network of Corpus Christi, and appreciate your time and attention!