Holistic living for families in need in Groton

Life Gate Holistic Living Center offers unique methods of perinatal care

Karina Beleno Carney in one of the counseling rooms of the Life Gate Holistic Living Center in Groton

GROTON – Walking through the Life Gate Holistic Living Center at 66 Boston Road, one would notice each room in the former farmhouse has been painted a specific striking color: blue, light green, maroon and grey. While they obviously give each room a sense of character, they also represent the multitude of services offered by the center for couples in any stage of becoming a family.

Everything from assistance with fertility to advice postpartum are offered by Life Gate as a means to expand its services to central Massachusetts.

For those having trouble starting a family of their own, Life Gate offers fertility yoga and reproductive acupuncture.

The center also has a trained staff of birth and postpartum doulas along with support classes for partners.

The newest feature the center offers is postpartum service, including support groups and healing treatments.

Other activities offered by Life Gate include crystal healing, meditation and massage sessions. Those interested in learning more can visit the center for its Grand Opening Celebration set for Oct. 4 from 4 to 7 p.m. and Oct. 5 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Karina Beleno Carney, Life Gate’s owner and director, said the center was a way for her and other experts in birth work to collaborate with each other and offer a “truly collaborative, holistic experience” to those wanting to start a family and those in the midst of becoming a family.

The need for Life Gate’s services came to Carney through personal experience, when her and her partner’s second child was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.

“I was thinking to myself, ‘How do I find the resources I need?’” she said. “While all of that was going on, I thought, ‘Why are we not supporting parents from preconception to postpartum?’”

Carney has plenty of experience in the field, working at her first acupuncture practice in 2005 and then becoming a reproductive acupuncturist in 2007. She saw the benefit of the practice after treating a woman who had four miscarriages and, after trying acupuncture, later gave birth to a baby girl.

“Seeing that positive and watching her pregnancy progress motivated me to follow this,” Carney said. “Nothing gave me a rush like that did.”

Life Gate originally opened its doors on Feb. 15, 2018, but Carney said Life Gate needed a re-branding after realizing another form of clientele wasn’t being served.

“30 to 40 percent of my private clients are not perinatal,” she said. “The fact that we can actually have these resources during difficult times is exciting. We’re hoping to make much stronger alliances with local OBGYNs and fertility clinics.”

On top of those alliances, the center will be offering numerous community programs throughout the season. Those include Education Community Wellness Hours for group treatment sessions, a doula group for birthing and postpartum sessions and guest speakers on Tuesdays and Thursdays free to the public covering toddler sleep essentials and chiropractic care. Life Gate will also be selling essential oils and clean-living products.

“The guest speakers were really pumped about this,” Carney said. “It’s a nice affirmation that we were doing the right thing.”

These alternative methods might seem odd to some people and Carney admitted she didn’t have a big speech to convince skeptics otherwise. But she knows what convinced her.

“I’m someone who’s like, ‘When you’re ready, you’ll call me,’” she said. “I didn’t see the need until I needed it. I asked around and the moms had nothing. Nobody talks about these things. As soon as we made the decision to offer perinatal services, that’s when we noticed change. People come to me when they’re desperate or scared. Afterwards when they’re done they say, ‘I wish I would’ve come sooner.’ I really feel that this is for everyone, looking at every part of yourself.”