Bwiti initiate. ibogaine treatment provider. integration coach.
My name is Mark Picard. I grew up in Upstate New York. My experience with Psychedelics started before age 16 taking LSD and Psilocybin mushrooms with my friends. As I grew up, I always came back to psychedelics for self improvement through recreational use, not yet realizing the true power of intention. Around 28 years old, I became a full blown opiate addict. I rode the wave of the epidemic for the next decade, first becoming dependent to pharmaceutical oxy-codone, moving to heroin, and ultimately fentanyl combining meth as things progressed. I had several periods of management with replacement opiates like kratom, suboxone, and methaodone, letting me see all of the levels of slavery for myself.
In October of 2020, I traveled to Baja, Mexico and was provided a beautiful iboga experience by my greatly missed Bwiti brother Bobby. The retreat was two weeks and included Temazcal sweat lodge ceremonies, daily yoga, regular physical activity, and concluded with a Bufo 5MeO-DMT ceremony. The experience was exactly what I needed at the time. As I learned more about these treatments, I found that there are so many small very important things overlooked either purposely or unknowingly by so many providers in this space working with iboga, ibogaine as well as various others. My ego propelled me to get involved, knowing I had pure intentions to see others get the help they need.
I apprenticed under an experienced ibogaine provider for a short time and after a year of experiencing the treatment process, I started The Medicine is You and began overseeing my own treatments. I received some first responder training to ensure client safety. After a year of working with ibogaine I had seen a dozen treatments or so, but still had no idea about integration. Most clinics at the time did not even mention the word "integration". This to me, became a concern and a challenge for me with the clients I had been treating. After feeling let down from the information I was receiving in the West, I decided to learn about this medicine through a different lens. I had colleagues take over the clinic and I traveled west Africa where I would spend the rest of the summer, learning the ways of the Bwitist tribes of Gabon. This trip rocked my world. I had a mesmerizing experience with iboga, having so many of my questions answered. I learned so much about my true nature and genuine self. I made friends I will have for life, and came back to the West with a completely different mindset. I learned a new modality of recovery that includes the use of psychedelic medicines like iboga, but paired with the professional, heart to heart relationship of an integration coach. I handed off the ibogaine clinic in Sonora Mexico, to my collegues. I kept the Medicine is You brand, and moved back to the states. In Africa, I went through my initiation ceremony next to one of the founders of the coaching standard, the Being True to You Recovery and Integration course. The writing seemed to be already on the wall, and I decided to obtain the BTTY coaching certification. Now with the proper training to hold space and secure a judgement free container, I decided to take a more individualized approach with clients. I now offer support from the moment a person decides they want to approach the medicine for a change, to the treatment itself, to the moment they don't need support anymore.
My short term goals include more apprenticing under heavily experienced providers using new safer methods to detox with ibogaine, medical training for an EMT certification, and more trips to Gabon to continue to learn from my Bwiti brothers and sisters. I believe iboga is the future. I plan on being involved with ibogaine treatments in the future as I learn more about this magical plant medicine.