THE moment came when Kate Darnell saw her sister in the Intensive Care Unit.
“My sister Emma had conversion syndrome, which meant she had a physical reaction to psychological stress,” Kate said.
It was in that moment Kate knew she had to share her knowledge and empower others to take care of themselves through self-love, care and meditation.
That was a year ago now and Kate now runs meditation classes under the name Gumboots by the Sea.
Kate was introduced to meditation in year eight by a teacher during a drama class at Chatham High School.
After high school, she studied and became a drama and English teacher herself.
“It was a natural progression for me to include meditation and mindfulness in my teaching,” Kate said.
“When students are relaxed and calm, they retain more information and can learn.”
After cutting down on work to have children, Kate thought more deeply about the importance of self-care.
“What happened to Emma made me realise I had a gift to share,” said Kate.
Kate was given the opportunity from Taree yoga teacher Aurora Packer to hold a meditation class. Kate’s confidence built and she now runs classes in Harrington and was recently asked to do ‘Create and Meditate’ at Harrington and Wingham Libraries for primary school students.
“We incorporated movement and quiet moments of mindfulness and relaxation, Bree Cardwell of Little Pixie also brought healing crystals. The parents and children loved it,” Kate said.
Kate said she teaches all ages meditation, from toddlers to people in their seventies, with a particular drive towards empowering women.
“I feel there is a need for women, in particular, to gather together and celebrate ourselves,” Kate said.
Kate holds a monthly meditation meet-up called ‘Find Your Light’ in the park at Old Bar Beach. The third Find Your Light is this Saturday, April 22 from 10am, for $10. Kate will also hold ‘Create and Meditate’ at Wingham Library today, Friday, April 21 from 11am, for $5.
A year on, her sister is thriving as a beautiful, happy mum and is Kate’s right hand woman at markets.
“She’s my gumboots goddess,” Kate added.