The Black Girl In Om List: erica chidi-cohen
Interview by Chante Dyson. Introduction by Lauren Ash. Photography by Scott Vance.
The Doula Darling
As CEO and co-founder of LOOM, a LA-based empowered education space offering insight and tools on everything “from periods to parenting” Erica Chidi-Cohen manages a steady flow of inquisitive energy, from curious, hopeful people who hope to parent to folk of all genders seeking shame-free and pleasure-centered classes on sex. And yes, it’s far from from the sex-ed and baby classes many of us grew up with, thank God. Our team got a taste of Erica’s wisdom during our BGIO Team retreat this past spring and learned more about our periods than ever before. As a doula, Erica is heart-centered and conscious about the disparities that exist for us as black women—she began her work years ago in San Francisco volunteering as a doula within the prison system. And not only is she a nurturer herself, but illuminates ways more of us can be, check out her book, Nurture, that just celebrated one year on bookshelves! From her recent feature on OWN TV, to her books recommendations and raw life lessons she shares, you’ll appreciate following her on the ‘gram @EricaChidiCohen because you’re sure to receive something beautiful in doing so.
What is the most powerful lesson you've learned about healing the feminine mind, body, and soul?
I've recently accepted that healing is on a continuum. Recognizing that there is no clear end point to that process has brought me peace.
What was one of your biggest struggles in creating LOOM and how did you rise above it?
The biggest struggle was convincing people that was a need for LOOM. It was challenging bringing people to accept that sex and period education belong in the same environment as pregnancy and parenting education. Our culture wants to keep them separate when they are one in the same. Refusing to accept archaic cultural mores and continuing to cultivate a brand that helps people see themselves as complete beings is how I'm rising above it.
How do you stay rooted?
I stay rooted by carving out time to take care of myself. Self care has become a non-negotiable for me. The busier I get, the harder I work to make space for downtime.
What is one area of your life where you are calling in an energy of expansion?
I'm calling in an expansion in my ability to lead. As we get ready to expand the business I want to be able to helm and support my team with compassion and strength.
What is something that no longer served you that you've recently replaced with something more wholesome?
I’ve shed my desire to be everything to everyone. I'm encouraging people to accept me for who I am, as opposed to who they need me to be. click to tweet
How has your definition of success evolved as you've risen into who you are today?
Much like my healing journey, my definition of success continues to evolve I haven't pinned down exactly what success truly means but a desire to feel whole and integrated is definitely at the top of my list.
What do you wish someone told you about being on the rise?
When you're on the rise it's going to feel incredible and affirming, but also really hard and lonely at points. Acclimating with vacillating between those two extremes is something I wish I had been told and learning to accept that can nourish your long term goals.
Receive something meaningful from this phenomenal woman? These 20 black women embody our mission fully. And their journeys over the past year illuminate what it means to root to rise. Share with us on social how you plan on doing the same in the year to come. #BGIORootToRise