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Meet Maren Miller of Love Rock Residue & Love Bubbles Heal in Lafayette

Today we’d like to introduce you to Maren Miller.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Maren. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
Many waves have lapped me up to this bank, to this moment in time. I am in awe of how my heart, as well as my views have expanded as I have encountered new forms of creation.

As a kid, I was given permission to be creative early on. I didn’t have the language for it then, but I was (and still am) a sensitive person and introvert, and loved recharging by myself in my room, creating. I was an 80s kid (born 1982), so singing, bedazzling, collage and mix taping were my first forms of creation. My room and walls became their own form of artwork with colors and collectives and painting. Eventually, in high school, my world opened up in the form of Photography class. Throughout college, the darkroom was one of my favorite places to be.

I got my BA in Studio Art and after a January interim spent in an elementary art room, decided I wanted to be part of the controlled chaos of what is a K-12 art room. I taught art for ten years, at five different schools.

I lived and taught abroad for four of those ten years at an international school in Norway. And it was during one of my summer visits (2011) home that I found my first heart rock. Finding that heart rock inspired an IG account and Etsy Shop that is now Love Rock Residue.

It’s now been seven years since I found that rock and started to create greeting cards, and since then I’ve found hundreds more, taken photos of even more, and now get feedback from people in my life who now also see hearts and heart rocks, because of me.

Fast forward to four years later – I am back in the US and have been at a school in Minnesota for three years. A school where I received training (Pacific Educational Group’s Courageous Conversations About Race Protocol, Lee Mun Wahs’ Mindful Inquiry, Michael Grinders’ Educational Non Verbal Yardsticks ((ENVoY)), Restorative Practices), resources, and ample opportunities to talk about race. I was able to implement practices in my classroom, offering my room as the first defense to my whiteness and that of the school system around me.

As a classroom teacher, I became deeply committed to understanding the oppressive school system I participated in and perpetuated as a white woman. I, therefore, became dedicated to the work of influencing systems and people in order to create thriving, compassion-filled space for my students and others.

It was from this experience, and my desire to never let that place and time in my life go in vain, that I ultimately decided to step away from teaching, but pursue spaces to continue to influence adults, specifically white adults, to look at themselves and examine their beliefs and behavior. I wish to continue to engage in softening hearts and raising awareness of whiteness and white supremacy.

And so, two years ago, I came to Colorado with a deep sense of purpose, and so much to continue to learn and let go of.

I have pursued experiences with organizations like Building Bridges and The Conflict Center in order to share my experience as a teacher and to find opportunities to encourage others in becoming less oppressive human beings, build communication skills, and increase awareness of how others may experience the world differently. As this work has introduced me to folks I want to align myself with, I have also found community in Reiki and energy healing in Lafayette. I am now a Reiki Teacher and Practitioner and am currently finishing my first year of Psychic Horizons Intuition class.

All these experiences bring me to the here and now. It has been here in Colorado, where another “business” has stemmed, Love Bubbles Heal. I am currently excited to continue to explore how energy work can help support folks in healing from oppressive and problematic ideology they have internalized by living in this country. To me it seems very important for folks to explore and come to terms with intersectionality and understanding white supremacy culture. Whether it is around racism, sexism, ableism, sizeism, xenophobia, transphobia, homophobia, etc., I strongly believe there is ample opportunity to combine the energy tools and work that I’ve been growing into and facilitating groups. Exploring Restorative Justice/Practices, Mindfulness, Awareness, healing, being better humans all seem to parallel and support each other.

I now stand in this new cycle, with a new wave of energy and the opportunity to lean in and continue to create art through Love Rock Residue, but also continue to facilitate and hold space in order to support others in their own healing journeys in whatever form that is, individually or systematically.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
A lot has happened over time, that I believe has snowballed and influenced all that is being opened right now in my life. Love Rock Residue has been a side “hobby” to my art teaching career. So one challenge has been to find time and energy to actually build it to more than friends and family buying my cards.

Another challenge was most definitely deciding to step away from teaching. Am I really going to step away from 10 years? A “career” and salary? But as hard as that was, it was also an empowering moment in my life, as I had to listen to that inner calling, the inner “knowing” that there is something else – there is another way. I had to return to the questions: Who am I? What am I doing here? What do I want? How do I want to be of service?

After that decision, the biggest challenge was the adjustment to a completely new beginning – a new state, starting completely over without a job lined up, with out a network. Eventually, I had to jump back into a role that I resisted and thought “I’d never go back to” – as a server in the restaurant industry. I’ve had to learn a new way of working and making money, leaving the comfort of a salaried teaching job and going to part time, hourly work. I had to leave a sector of work that is more “socially acceptable” and a few rungs higher on the hierarchy of jobs in this society. Folks are rough out there, and the entitlement and disrespect one encounters is something I’ll never get used to. I serve in order to pay rent and stay flexible enough with my time to take on clients, as well as work for the non profits that I want to support in making a difference in the world. It’s a choice that I continue to make, because of the flexibility and continued possibilities to live on my own terms.

I am currently faced with how to truly step into the many forms of passion and creation that want to be fueled and shared. I believe that the few years I have been in Colorado have been opportunities to further let go of conditioning that kept me small, and it feels important for me to keep leaning into offering the various talents, skills and abilities that continue to want to surface. It feels like I’ve been through many cycles of birth and death around who I am in the world and what I am here to offer and be of service in.

It has been a long road, and ultimately, I’ve also had a lot of fear to move through. Fear of what to say, how to say it, what to create, will people like it? Imposter syndrome has been big as of late. Perfectionism. If I do sell stuff, get more clients, how will I manage it all? Finances? Taxes. Money stuff.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
I am on a mission to empower conscious, reflective, change makers. I want to help others toward greater self awareness, self trust, inner knowing and healing. I wish to encourage and facilitate methods and practices for the betterment of self, but also for the greater good of all.

My business/company, Maren J Miller LLC, currently has two strong branches. Love Rock Residue (May the residue of love remain with you and seep into your being always and forever) is my artwork. Love Bubbles Heal encompasses my energy healing work, as well as consulting and facilitating.

The essence of my business in its truest form is to help and support others towards self awareness and healing. How do you show up for yourself in curiosity and humility? How can you work toward your true authentic self? I’m here to help peel away layers, to listen, and to help others learn to trust, know and take action steps. It is my intent to be a space holder, a container, a question asker.

What role has luck (good luck or bad luck) played in your life and business?
I don’t really see it as luck anymore. I see the various spaces, places, and people I have been in a relationship with, interacted with, been “rubbed” by, all having had their place in my journey. I acknowledge lessons learned and opportunities surrendered to in order to change, grow, and become more fully myself. I even appreciate the difficult and painful experiences as they have given me the chances to step fully into my purpose, by peeling away at the patterns and conditioning that kept me from being my true authentic, vulnerable, less oppressive, full-of-joy-and-curiosity-and-humility self.

And so I look forward to seeing where this all continues to take me, and how following joy and expansion and my unique perspective and experiences shape me, how I interact and share with the world, and ultimately how I participate and show up as a service provider and artist.

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