Hi there 🙂 Thank you for checking out my blog! I look forward to connecting with you.
My name’s Sydney May Reed and I’m 24 years young. I have a passion for healthy living and making a positive difference in the world. I created Planting Within to channel my love for healing through conscious living, mindfulness, self-care, and spiritual enlightenment.
Originally, I am Texas born-and-raised but, this year, decided to lay my roots down in Asheville, North Carolina with my boyfriend. It’s a charming little fairytale town (so I like to call it) with crystal shops, bookstores and hippie boutiques on every corner! The city is surrounded by mountain views, wild animals and nature everywhere you look. It feels like home.
I have an interesting story of how I’ve become the person I am, as each of us do, and have used my challenges as momentum to create the life I, not only live but, LOVE.
In 24 years, I’ve been through many ups and downs that have taught me what it means to be strong, patient and kind to myself and others. I believe my mission here on this Earth is to make better the lives of those I touch and make the best out of whatever opporitunities (or oppositions) come my way.
In 2017, I graduated college with a Bachelor of Science in Health Studies at the University of Texas at Tyler (Go Patriots!) and became a Certified Health Education Specialist through NCHEC.
In 2019 I became a 200-hour registered yoga teacher through the Yoga Alliance. I am trained to teach Vinyasa, Hatha and Yin yoga. I love every second on my mat as a student and off the mat when I have the privilege of being a teacher.
Yoga has been a guiding light for me the past 5 years. I have become more capable both physically and mentally and have made a deeper connection to God, the Universe, my higher self, the divine, creation, etc. than I ever realized possible. Those things alone have allowed me to understand that the quality of my life is completely in my hands. Through mastering my emotions, thought and actions, I begin to manifest the life I wish to create, which is one of love, growth and vitality.
My health journey began in August 2013 after I began my first semester in college and my loving momma told me she had been diagnosed with colon cancer.
Afraid of what might happen if she refused treatment, she chose to undergo chemotherapy, radiation and surgery to “cure” her cancer. Intuitively, she knew there was another way so, during this time, she went full force in to a new, healthier way of living. She ate huge salads, made homemade juices, exercised and maintained a positive attitude every single day. Unlike most of the people getting treated for the same thing, my mom had little to no side effects from her treatments. Others were extremely sick, tired, and depressed, but she was energized, healthy, and enjoying life.
About five months after her diagnosis, the doctor’s couldn’t find any cancer cells. We were all shocked, but so thankful a the same time. Not only was it a relief to know my mom was healing, it was an eye awakening experience to the truth that diet and lifestyle is a HUGE plays a huge role in healing.
A few years after that, I took a yoga as an elective at my college. Through this class, I learned so much about the mind-body-soul connection and how one cannot exist without directly affecting the other. This discovery led me to learning about life beyond what we physically experience. I began questioning the world around me and seeking my own personal truth and purpose. Along the way, I learned how important it is to treat ourselves, and others, with love, care, and respect and that the path I was on did not speak to my highest truth.
There I was, halfway through college, about to start nursing school. I’ve always known that I want to help heal people and was introduced to natural healing, “alternative” medicine, and metaphysics. I saw health in a completely different way, and when I found out my school offered a degree that focused on prevention of disease opposed to treatment, everything inside of me screamed “YES!!!” I just knew I had to go for it. I changed my major from nursing to health studies and can honestly say it has been one of the BEST decisions I have ever made!
Although I was pursuing a path of healing, my actions were not aligned with my holistic beliefs and my body, mind and emotions were suffering in more ways than I realized. After years of taking birth control, smoking cigarettes and marijuana, drinking alcohol and doing other harmful things to my body, it was catching up to me. In 2016, I was diagnosed with a lesion on my cervix during a routine pap smear. I had also developed chronic acne, IBS, depression and anxiety.
These realizations helped to propel me into the next chapter of my life where I began to take back control over how I felt physically and emotionally and luckily… On April 1st, 2017, after many failed attempts, I had the intense urge to FINALLY stop smoking cigarettes after almost 6 years and became vegetarian. Exactly two months later I became vegan. These have also been some of the best decisions I’ve ever made (although I am no longer vegan.)
I spent the next two years experimenting with all kinds of plant-based foods and supplements. There was even a period of time when I only ate raw, vegan foods and completely cut out fats. I was desperately looking for the quickest way to heal myself, however, little did I know I was hurting myself more in the process. I was consuming entirely too much sugar and mold toxins in the high amounts of fruit, nuts, seeds and legumes I ate. Still, I looked for answers.
Then, in 2018 I met my boyfriend, Grayson, who completely helped shape way I began to see nutrition. He was (and is) so well read and very knowledgeable about healing the body, having faced his own health challenges that were very similar to my own. I am so grateful to have a partner who understands what I was going through and who wants nothing more than to help us heal to become our greatest versions.
I trusted his advice, cooked what he recommended to me and finally began to feel real healing taking place within my gut. Although I began incorporating what I originally thought was hurting me, like animal products, I began to find balance. I vowed only to eat ethically-raised and farmed meats, dairy and eggs from sustainable, and preferably local, farms. That, combined with incorporating copious amounts of healthy fats has completely changed the game in my healing.
Being aware that healing is a journey, not a destination, and this road will likely never end, I am optimistic that with consistence and faith, I will cure my ailments and maintain a healthy life; one in which I can share with those I meet, my future children and the generations to come.
I created this blog to be a place for me to educate others who are interested in making positive lifestyle changes, as well as share the ups and downs of my own health journey. Not only is this a fun way for me to express thoughts, ideas, and emotions surrounding health, but if I can inspire at least one person to change something in their life for the better, then I have done what I’ve set out to do!
“Growth comes from Planting Within”
Stay healthy and kind,