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Natural Awakenings Central New Jersey


Oasis of Light

Feb 02, 2022 10:20PM ● By Nicole Zornitzer

The year of 2022 begins a beautiful year for me—this year I will turn 50 years old! Along with this special milestone, I can proudly announce that I am starting menopause. Yes, you heard this correctly folks; the forbidden term menopause and I’m proudly announcing this. My purpose in sharing this is to diminish the preconceived Western views of menopause and the stereotypical connotations that come along with this change of life; or dare I say amazing passage of womanhood? 

In the Western view, women are often embarrassed to acknowledge that they are in menopause; they assume that fellow humans are judging their womanhood, femininity, and attractiveness. However, what most don’t discuss is how amazing it feels to not have to worry about a monthly period after years of maneuvering around tampons and the plethora of menstrual cycle “remedies”. With menopause, women are finally free! This is just one of the basic pleasures of moving beyond menses and into living life fully in the beautiful bodies we have been gifted.

In Ayurveda menopause is an oasis of lightness wedged between the phases of fertility and wisdom (Women’s Power to Heal Through Inner Medicine by Maya Tiwari, 2007).  In Vedic tradition, the phases of a female are honored rather than judged and the insights that are offered to our population need to be embraced versus dismissed. Ayurvedic medicine views the body and any dis-ease as an imbalance of the bodily humors, which create toxicity, ama, and disturb tissue metabolism. Of the three humors or constitutions, a Vata imbalance plays a key role in menopausal symptoms. To balance the Vata or any humor that is out of balance is essential to find wellness and release of symptoms. 

I like the idea of being in an oasis of lightness. This is exactly how I feel, not only because of my physical state but because of my age, my experiences and my knowledge about topics that interest me (interest is key). If all women viewed menopause as a passage into a deeper state of mindfulness, emotion, knowledge and devotion to the ultimate Shakti or feminine awakening, menopause would in essence be demystified and become a tangible, wonderful moment in our lives. Additionally, the men in our lives would embrace, celebrate, and support this transition into the what I believe is the ultimate feminine, goddess-like moment. Who doesn’t want to feel like a goddess?

Women’s bodies are beautiful, all of them. Let’s celebrate the female body for all that it offers from childbearing to menopause; remember it is the woman who carries the fruits of life, and our bodies are temples that should be revered with the ultimate respect.

Nicole Zornitzer, ERYT 1000, yoga therapist, founder of Niyama Yoga & Wellness Shala, located in Randolph, New Jersey; Upper Lake Mohawk in Sparta, New Jersey; Roseland, New Jersey; and Delray Beach in Florida.

Tick Talk

Spring officially sprung on March 21. We have turned our clocks ahead. We are looking forward to warm winds, sunny skies and the smell of fresh cut grass. The daffodils and tulips have recently bloomed and we are just starting with the yard work that comes with the warmer weather.  Sadly, another season has started ramping up.  Tick season.

•             The best form of protection is prevention. Educating oneself about tick activity and how our behaviors overlap with tick habitats is the first step.

•             According to the NJ DOH, in 2022 Hunterdon County led the state with a Lyme disease incidence rate of 426 cases per 100,000 people. The fact is ticks spend approximately 90% of their lives not on a host but aggressively searching for one, molting to their next stage or over-wintering. This is why a tick remediation program should be implemented on school grounds where NJ DOH deems high risk for tick exposure and subsequent attachment to human hosts.

•             Governor Murphy has signed a bill that mandates tick education in NJ public schools. See this for the details.  Tick education must now be incorporated into K-12 school curriculum. See link:

•             May is a great month to remind the public that tick activity is in full swing. In New Jersey, there are many tickborne diseases that affect residents, including Anaplasmosis, Babesiosis, Ehrlichiosis, Lyme disease, Powassan, and Spotted Fever Group Rickettsiosis.

•             For years, the focus has mainly been about protecting ourselves from Lyme disease. But other tick-borne diseases are on the rise in Central Jersey. An increase of incidence of Babesia and Anaplasma are sidelining people too. These two pathogens are scary because they effect our blood cells. Babesia affects the red blood cells and Anaplasma effects the white blood cells.

•             Ticks can be infected with more than one pathogen. When you contract Lyme it is possible to contract more than just that one disease. This is called a co-infection. It is super important to pay attention to your symptoms. See link.

A good resource from the State:


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