People often ask me how I went from being an attorney to owning a holistic health center, so I decided to write this blog to share my story. Previously, I worked as an attorney who helped refugees get asylum in the United States because they were fleeing from persecution in their homelands. While sitting in the immigration interviews in the Immigration, Customs & Enforcement, otherwise known as ICE, I felt severe pain in my pelvis region (which I later became to understand as my root chakra-the red energy center of our body that represents security, safety, and what grounds us to the earth). But while I was sitting in ICE, my root chakra was on fire. Later, I learned that I was an empath, and that empaths take on the pain of the world. So sitting for countless hours being absorbed in the misery that many of my clients suffered, took a big toll on my own physical body. It was then that I sought my own refuge to find healing for my body, and went to a healing center in Brazil in October of 2015. I went with a friend and was in a group of 12 people where we bonded over meals, sacred waterfalls and visits to the healing center known as The Casa. Dressed in all white, together, we made the trek to the Casa in the mornings with crowds of biblical proportions seeking miraculous healings. I experienced many of my own healings there, and will blog about that at another time. Because there, my mind and perception were blown way open. It was as if I had been suddenly transported through a wormhole in to a parallel universe. It was peaceful and beautiful, and it was there that I felt called to bring one of the healing beds back to Pittsburgh. My friend and I lugged this healing bed through customs in Brazil and Miami, until it made its way to my closet back in Pittsburgh. Well as “coincidence” would have it, my husband just happened to be renovating a building.
“Can I rent one room and put the healing bed in there, and donate the money to the soup kitchen?” I asked my husband.
He laughed. “Great business idea, honey.” But in the end, he supported me, and then the magic happened. Like a magnet, all kinds of healers and practitioners in Pittsburgh started to call me weekly, hoping to work near the healing bed. Every week, my friend and I had lunches with the most interesting people who would pitch their ideas and explain their fascinating healing modalities. I felt like a Hollywood agent, ready to pilot a new show, dubbed “The Real Healers of Pittsburgh!” But in all seriousness, the one room in my husband’s building with the healing bed, ultimately grew like a seed, and sprouted into today what is the marvelous Green Heiress, a thriving Holistic Center in Aspinwall, Pennsylvania. The funny thing is, I didn’t even ever draw up a business plan. Now, a little over 2 years later, we opened up our second location in Fox Chapel, Pennsylvania because we were becoming close to capacity. To this day, the healing bed continues to be the heart of Green Heiress. Many who come in, comment on its peaceful energy. I still take donations to the soup kitchen, and I will be forever grateful for this magical acorn that inspired a mighty healing center!
Meet the Speaker:
Erica McIlroy is an attorney turned wellness advocate and entrepreneur. She is the CEO of The Green Heiress, a wellness center and safe haven for people who are seeking health, healing and happiness.