Our Story

Those of us who make up the Yarrow Collective have experienced psychiatric diagnosis, suicidality, trauma, extreme emotional distress, addiction, recovery, discrimination, and more. 

 

We are people who have found beauty in our sadness, 

who have found trap doors at “rock bottom,” 

who have broken our hearts on the wind and found our names within, 

who have nightmares about mental hospitals,

who kinda-sorta-sometimes liked therapy and medication,
who found community in rites of passage,
who needed to define our stories in our own terms, 

who realized we were the experts of our own experience

who trouble linear timelines of healing, 

who sometimes are still really struggling, and 

who dream of alternatives.

Some of us reject labels like “mental illness,” “diagnosis,” and “recovery,” while others of us identify with those words as useful and meaningful to our stories. 
 
The Yarrow Collective is borne out of a need for alternatives, a need for community, and a need to reclaim our stories in ways that are meaningful to us.
 
All that to say, here at the Yarrow Collective, we’ve “been there,” and we’re here to envision & cultivate what healing, support, and empowerment can look like through alternative options to the current conventional system.

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About our name...

Achillea millefolium, Thousand Leaved, Dog Daisy, Green Arrow, Knight’s Milfoil, Milenrama, Bloodwort, Nose Bleed, Devil’s Nettle, Poor Man’s Pepper, Soldier’s Woundwort, Staunchweed, Sanguinary… There are many names for yarrow. Sprouting from both rich and dry soil alike, from the confinements of garden pots, burgeoning between the rocks of cliff sides, reaching its many-leaved fingers through stiff soil to break with the light of day, flourishing across wild fields — yarrow grows nearly everywhere in the world. 

 

As the botanical name “Achillea” suggests, under tutelage of Chiron, the Wounded Healer, Achilles used yarrow to heal his soldiers’ wounds. Whisper it your traveler’s prayers, place it under your right heel, sing to it on midsummer’s eve, sew it beneath your pillow, dream of beloveds, place it at your boundaries, on your shields, over your hearth. 

 

Yarrow breaks the fever, stops the bleeding, allays the ache, invites release.

 

Braw, resilient, enduring, our Collective is many-leaved. Gauzing into the gashes, unfolding in multicolored blossoms, we grow to heal.