Welcome to “Seven Minutes in Heaven” GO Magazine’s brand new interview series that profiles a different queer lady each day, by asking her seven custom (sometimes random) questions. Get to know the thoughts, feelings, and opinions of the groundbreaking, fierce forces-of-nature in the queer community.
A couple of weeks ago I was in search of healing practices to integrate into my life. As the good millennial, I am, I took to Google for this search and found Traci Medeiros-Bagan’s site COM|Passionate REVOLT. I was immediately drawn in by her words and the practice she’s created around compassionate healing. Medeiros-Bagan provides a variety of resources to the community from tarot readings to therapy and life coaching.
After reading a bit of her words and seeing the amazing work she’s doing, I knew I wanted to interview Traci to learn more about her practice and more about healing. So, it is my pleasure to bring you our “Seven Minutes in Heaven” with feminist healer Traci Medeiros-Bagan.
GO Magazine: Who are you and what do you do?
Traci Medeiros-Bagan: I’m a sexuality, gender and identity nerd, a queer vegetarian femme-inist of color (She/They), and a pet co-parent who probably spends more time than I should talking with my partner about (and to) our furry four-legged brood. The healing practice that has sprung up from that is COM|Passionate REVOLT, a private practice through which I offer QPOC aware feminist therapy, life coaching, education, and consultations. I work mainly with LGBT, Queer, Genderqueer, Non-Binary, Non-monogamous, and Kink identified/interested/
GO: Where do you go for inspiration when you’re feeling discouraged or depleted?
TMB: The older I get the more I notice the need to slow down and get grounded before I can send more energy outwards. I generally turn to my partner, my tarot decks, and my yoga practice. Sometimes all it takes is a deep breath and a clarifying reflection to reset.
GO: Who are your queer role models?
TMB: I feel like this is a cop-out but it’s also the most honest answer I can give: my clients. From as far back as grad school I’ve run into so many therapists who are so jaded, so burnt out. I get the burnout. I’ve found that the larger my client load the more intensely I feel the tiniest imbalances in my self-care, but I feel really lucky that jadedness isn’t something I think I’ll ever have to combat.
I hold a good amount of reverence around the life stories that folks are courageous enough to share with me. Particularly in work with marginalized communities where, unfortunately, intersecting identities can often mean intersecting experiences of trauma. And yet, as heavy as these stories are people continue to believe that they can heal, regenerate, and sit successfully in their own agency. Even at their lowest points, my clients are coming in to do work, sometimes they find the motivation for themselves, sometimes they find it in the love others have for them, and just as often in the sometimes nebulous idea of community. I’m constantly struck by the power of human resiliency. And what a comforting thought that even at our messiest, in the midst of our most challenging struggles, that we’re creatures forged in and worthy of some universal grace. I think it can sometimes seem like therapists are the holders of humanity’s most terrifying memories and sad stories, the things we can’t share with anyone else, not even those closest to us. However, I can’t help but feel that we’re the fortunate witnesses of human capacity and the seeds of strength that we don’t even always consciously know that we have.
GO: Describe yourself in three words.
TMB: I asked my partner for help with this one, she said, “bossy, compassionate, and passionate.” The boss in me wants to tell her to re-pick the first one but if I’m being perfectly honest those all aren’t inaccurate labels. 🙂
GO: How would you define healing?
TMB: I think healing is few-fold: the intersection of authenticity, agency, and compassion. It’s first about figuring out what we need, what “healing” means in our own very unique lives. Then about sorting out a path to get there, and having a lot of compassion for ourselves along the journey.
GO: What work do you feel the queer community needs for collective liberation?
TMB: I had to give a quote last year when I presented at The Woodhull Sexual Freedom Summit, something positive that I thought was important to share. I was doing a workshop on defeating shame, which is actually a pretty consistent theme in the work I do with folks in general. What resonated with me was this and I think it applies here as well, “Sexual freedom becomes sexual liberation when we stop apologizing for who we are.” While the queer community is so vast that we all have differing degrees of freedom and accessibility, I think we’re moving into places where we can feel safer about living authentically. However, because we’ve never had this privilege we don’t really know what to do with it. How would our lives, relationships, movements, and communities look different if we lived in abundance rather than scarcity, took up more space, and spent less time defending our own right to exist?