Okay Lucy ... This one is for you. Because you asked me to write a blog about this. Because you were curious. As I write, though, I make a Disclaimer. This is not an advertisement and I am not a doctor -- though I have played one on stage :) This is simply Jenni's Corner and a few thoughts about discoveries I have made recently. Should you begin and opt out, I will never know.
I am a Curious individual. I am an Alice and I have explored many Rabbit Holes, learning when I can and meeting Mad Hatters, Obtuse Caterpillars and Whimsical Cheshire Cats along the way. I have leapt into the Looking Glass and speak Nonsense fluently. I ask questions ... and for me questions breed more questions. I am content that this is so.
That said, I recently began to experience a resurgence of some frustrating issues related to stress, sleep and anxiety. More annoying than anything. And, as I am at an age where such weirdness is wont to happen ... well, I wanted these things to stop happening. And I was Curious as to whether there was an option that would help me other than over the counter or prescription tools.
Not that those are bad. I was just Curious.
My Yoga Instructors had recently introduced me to the world of Essential Oils. Had used them in a class or two. Had spoken of the benefits they had encountered when integrating them into their own lives. Now, there are no medical claims I am suggesting here. I am simply sharing discoveries and presenting what I heard and experienced personally with these tools.
One of my Yoga instructors ... well, she is like no other. I attend her classes and KNOW that my heart rate has eased, my spirit has lifted, and my peace of mind is ... well, in one piece once again. Her class is therapy to my soul, my body and my mind. And I do everything in my power to get there Saturday morning at 9am. She empowers my spirit and strengthens my physical being along the way Yoga does that. But Yoga with Suzanne gives just ... a little something more.
Anyway, Suzanne had mentioned Essential Oils one day. And my Curious Alice nature took over. Might there be something here that could help me with my surges of Anxiety and Sleep issues other than a pill or trip to the pharmacy? Was there something natural that might support my own system in making the needed transition of a 40-something year old young woman? Was there something therapeutic out there I could access without a Therapist?
Yeah, okay, I wanted a quick fix without a "fix."
I met Suzanne at the Bean & Leaf in Royal Oak. I went to hear about her experiences and to learn. And I was delighted with what I discovered that morning. She introduced to the world of Young Living Essential Oils. (I say the name because these are the ONLY oils with which I have any experience or have researched/explored. I can personally only speak to these specifically.) She told me all about the benefits and affects of diffusing certain oils in water and absorbing their scent. Of massaging these oils into key places on your body. And of taking these oils orally to support overall health and wellness ...
Did you know that when you put a drop of these essential oils on your big toe it takes 23 seconds to work through your circulatory system? Faster than a Xanax ... and safer too since the addictive, narcotic aspect is eliminated. You can apply them at pressure or chakra points with varying affects. There are numerous reflex areas on your foot that send energy through your neuro-electical pathways. In other words, a drop of oil in a specific location on your foot can travel to a point within your system and affect you, your outlook and how you feel.
I was fascinated and decided to give this world of Essential Oils some time and research. I've discovered that it isn't a new thing at all. It isn't a fad. Essential Oils have been in use since before the birth of Christ ... remember the Frankincense and Myrrh? They are used commonly in Eastern practices. And, when you think of it, plants were once used in early medical care. So, it's not without supporting documentation.
There are fundamentally three ways to use Essential Oils ... topically, aromatically, and as a dietary aid -- you add a drop of Grapefruit or Lemon to Water or Peppermint into Tea to soothe the stomach. You apply 2-4 drops to the back of wrists, the temples or the neck. With some oils you can do this "neat," Others require diluting with an oil called a Carrier Oil.
The final way to use these oils is Aromatically, placed with water into a diffuser. A Diffuser is an ultrasonic humidifier and air purifier that breaks the essential oils into micro-particles and disperses them into the air, with various affects to the individual(s) nearby.
The number one Essential Oil is Lavender. It is credited with helping about everything ... hence the reason I told my dear friend Lucy to use a few drops with Epson Salts in her bath to soak away stress. I have itchy eyes in the morning ... probably because my cat sleeps with me. I use a drop of Lavender and Frankincense around my eye area in the morning and am itch free for the day.
Now, you can scoff all you wish and talk about the placebo affect. But, when my son had a migraine, I used my essential oil tools and my diffuser. I put a drop of Peppermint into his tea. 20 minutes later he walked from the darkened room in shock that the migraine was gone. This from a kid who typically sleeps for hours and throws up twice before recovery sets in.
In another instance, a stomach ache was aided by a touch of peppermint ... and an allergy to ragweed was eased by the Allergy Trio Blend of Peppermint, Lemon and Lavender.
At times I play mad scientist ... mixing my oils for certain results. There are combinations, blends, "recipes" and ideas I learn from an amazing group of women who have integrated these oils into their daily lives.
I have an oil diffusing right now. It's called Balance. It aids my perspective. It eases my stress. It makes me feel good. And, with two very stressful work events, kid stuff, home care and rehearsals happening ... that's something I need.
So, Lucy, oil and water do mix. They mix together in my diffuser and send an aromatic message to my mind, body and spirit. They nurture me and help ease my anxiety. I have a new Pre-Sleep routine that involves oil and water and two very amazing essential oils called Vetiver and Valor. And I've been sleeping better than ever.
Like I said, I am a Curious soul. A bit mad of course. The best people are, you know.