Today we’d like to introduce you to Robert Prokop.
Hi Robert, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstory.
12 years ago, I took a course to learn how to become a consulting hypnotist. At that point I was 19, managing at Quizno’s and going to school full time. I knew that I wanted to pursue some sort of career in integrative health, but I really had no idea where to go or how, and hypnosis felt like a good starting place. I was taking a bunch of college courses just to fulfill credits and didn’t feel particularly passionate about anything I was learning at the time. When I was in this hypnosis class, I met two shamans who told me about a school in Boulder, CO called Naropa University. Shortly after learning about it, I applied, got in, and moved to Boulder to get my undergrad in Contemplative Psychology. It was there I got to begin studying things I was really passionate about like meditation, Buddhist psychology, five elements acupuncture, herbal medicine, and nutrition, just to name a few things. I felt particularly excited about the exposure to Chinese Medicine I had there, and decided to pursue my Masters in Acupuncture at Maryland University of Integrative Health outside of Baltimore City. Shortly after my graduate program, I started my business and decided to stay in Baltimore! Presently I live with my partner in a row home in the beautiful neighborhood of Abell where I have been for seven years. We work hard to improve our community and make Baltimore a beautiful place to thrive. I grow a lot of vegetables and herbs in my garden, have four chickens, a native wildflower/pollinator garden, and more. I believe that cultivating the earth and making the local community a nicer place for people and wildlife is important, and it is a large part of the goals I have set for myself over the years.
Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Looking back, I had a smooth road, although at many points it didn’t feel that way. In my early twenties, I was stressed about school and my future which is pretty normal. My graduate program started three weeks after I graduated with my Bachelor’s degree, so I immediately moved across the country to Maryland and began a 3.5 years program right after completing my thesis. That was a particularly stressful few months. I pretty much left my whole life to relocate, and it was more anxiety-inducing than I thought it would be. It was all definitely for the better though, and I wouldn’t trade the experiences I had for anything else. That kind of transition and change forced me to learn things about myself and grow into a more mature, independent, and better person. I also had the support of my family, my partner, and wonderful friends who I had the pleasure of reconnecting with when I moved to Maryland.
As you know, we’re big fans of Wind Gate Wellness. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about the brand?
I started Wind Gate Wellness back in 2016 when I finished my Master’s. I perform all services there, and the whole operation is run solely by me. Wind Gate Wellness is an integrative health clinic for Chinese Medicine. I am a general practitioner and see patients for things from IBS, immune disorders, and insomnia to facial rejuvenation and sports medicine. I perform acupuncture, prescribe Chinese herbal formulas, cupping, moxibustion, gua sha, and more! I offer a custom service to each patient that may include multiple modalities within an hour, unlike many wellness practices which often charge extra fees. I think one of the things I am most proud of about my brand is being an LGBTQ+ business owner. Health care, whether it is integrative, alternative, or allopathic can be very isolating and discriminatory towards people of the LGBTQ+ community (as well as many other communities). There need be more choices in health care practices that offer safe space and a judgment-free zones. I am proud to serve the health of my patients who are part of LGBTQ+ community with me, and love being able to contribute to health care as that kind of resource.
Have you learned any interesting or important lessons due to the Covid-19 Crisis?
I think I have learned and am still learning a lot of interesting lessons from this crisis, as are most people. It is hard for me to find the words, but one takeaway for me was that things can change in an instant, and we should strive to enjoy moments of peace and stability when they’re happening. This is an ideal I have embraced for a long time, but seeing just how drastic and fast change can be gave that philosophy more gravity for me. I also think one of the most jarring things for me about the crisis is that there are so many people who never got to say goodbye to their loved ones or were forced to say goodbye too soon. I am very thankful that so far, I haven’t had to deal with that during this crisis, and I can only imagine the pain and deep sadness that so many people around the world have experienced this past year. The collective grief is palpable, and I am so sorry to everyone who lost loved ones during these times.
- Acupuncture $100
- Facial Rejuvenation $150
- Sports Medicine Package $120
- We bill insurance!
- We accept Health Savings and Flex Spending Accounts as payment
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- Website: windgatewellness.com
- Instagram: @windgatebaltimore