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All About Sharma

Who is Sharma and why is it "Kafe"?

Hello, my name is Shawna. I am the host of the Sharma Karma Kafe podcast.


For as long as I can remember, I have been fascinated with color, crystals and stones, astrology, and all things jewelry. I have also always wanted to open a cafe that would serve dishes that were intended to promote healing while exploring nutrition according to your astrological sign with individual needs and desired results. For instance, what does a Libra need to eat more of? Are blue foods better than red foods? What day of the week does each color correspond with? Is there a food or beverage that helps with loneliness and grief? Do certain foods have power to heal us? Of course they do! It is only a matter of finding what works for you.


I love the concept of a bistro with a menu that changes daily or weekly depending on the season and availability of ingredients.


However, I never pursued that ambition. I was always more inclined to earn a paycheck that would support myself and my family (like many of us). That need pulled me to the banking and finance industry where I worked for many of the large institutions. My focus was always primarily in mortgage loans and mortgage processing and later into anti-money laundering analysis.


In the back of my mind I always knew that those jobs were not my true calling. I was a square trying to fit into a round hole. 


In addition, my childhood and upbringing was filled with the catholic religion, alcoholism, abuse, and a thyroid disorder that went undetected from the age of seven to 10 years old. Since then I have been on thyroid replacement medication, which I have taken every day of my life and I will always have to take. During the years I did not know about my thyroid, I developed very common symptoms. I was very puffy, my eyes bulged, and I had absolutely no physical coordination. I was tired all the time and slowly my spine started to curve. I was not growing at the normal rate of a child.


As a child I also experienced, first hand, the disfunction, abuse, and terror of growing up with a violent alcoholic parent. Both my parents are alcoholics - one was violent and the other the victim.


Of course, all this lead to counseling and therapy, which I have relentlessly pursued all my adult life, not much of which was very helpful or personally satisfying.


Growing up in this environment while also being forced into the Catholic religion did not leave any room to experiment with other forms of spirituality or self-help as a child or adolescent. It did foster a great deal of mistrust, confusion, and lack of ability to function properly in adult relationships. Once I was able to seek help for myself, the journey into ineffective counseling and therapy began.


To be fair, I did meet with many counselors and therapists that were great people with all the right education and intentions. They were just not equipped with the knowledge that I needed to heal completely.


I went from one marriage at a very young age, to a divorce, to dating, to marrying again, having a child, divorced again (after 10 years of marriage), and back into the dating world. All of this in pursuit to find someone that would complete me and make me happy. And in case you haven't heard, that is NOT the way to feel complete or the key to happiness. 

I have ALWAYS struggled with mental health issues. The medication that replaced the thyroid in my body, also caused depression. The co-dependence issues of an adult child or alcoholic parents, the confusion of religion and ideals and the inner belief that I would only be good enough if I was pleasing a man, and that I was already a "sinner "at the age of 14, lead me down some twisted roads.

Then came Yoga, metaphysical healing, mindfulness, crystals, color, and a new idea of spirituality. A lot of these ideas came to me during a five year stretch of sobriety and the help of a 12 step program. I knew that the answer I had been looking for was in one of these branches of healing. I dabbled in the subjects and tried to find a recipe that would heal me. I have survived the COVID-19 pandemic by focusing on obtaining Yoga Teacher Certification and starting my own podcast and small business. It's still a work in progress, but I am making progress and I hope to help others find the ingredients that make up their true recipe for health, humor and happiness.


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