Have you ever had something you've neglected for so long it becomes painful and guilt ridden to contemplate getting back to the routine? Yep, this blog and my podcast too for that matter. I love writing! I send out a monthly Herbal newsletter and a weekly Magical newsletter. I just created an online course where I am still adding content. I've found that since I linked my blog to my business website I've boxed myself into this space of feeling like I need to post very professional plant monographs and inquiries. And then my brain goes down the rabbit hole of there are so many amazing herbalists out there producing these articles. What do I have to bring to the table that is new. And I finally realized that I don't live my life to be like others. I've always had a hard time fitting into a box-it works for a while and eventually my elbows get pointy. Leo here with Scorpio rising. Is it any wonder? I am a story teller. I love sharing my bit of Mt. Hood. That is what my podcasts (former and current) have always been about. The plants, the animals, time in our kitchen and the apothecary. And that is what I want to bring to this blog. I haven't decided if I will get back to the podcast. I love podcasting! But do I have enough to say that can span all of these spaces? I do think I preach to the same audience across the board. Is that true? Email or drop a comment and give me some feedback.
Last summer as I posted a final entry for the year (having no idea it would be) I was in the midst of a healing crisis that began in the spring. I was diagnosed with Uterine Cancer in June and took until the beginning of October to finally begin to recover from a surgery gone horribly wrong. I am not going to share all the not very thrilling details here. But I will share that I think there is a place for both Allopathic (the Western Medical model) and Herbalism (as well as other forms of healing) in our world. I had a very fast growing tumor. There was no time to seek out alternative ways to slow and stop the growth. And believe me I would have if there had been time. There are so many healing modalities out there that can do just that. There are also times when you have to go to the quickest route to assure care. That said, what a mess it was. My experience of not being heard, being bounced about just reassured me that what I do with herbs and helping people find the right life changes is the most important calling for me right now.
Keeping healthy and bringing herbs into your diet and life with teas and elixirs (and so many other carriers for healing with the plants) can keep the need away from Allopathic care. But also using herbs outside of that model. Taking a tincture of Meadowsweet for a headache is almost the same as popping an Advil. Look to the problem. What is causing your headache? What needs to change so you don't have them anymore? Eyesight? Stress? Not eating correctly? What I advocate most with people I talk to is to live mindfully. Be in connection with your body. Know yourself so well that you can make changes so that you don't end up at a Doctor's office or in an Herbalist's care.
Obviously there are times when our bodies run amok. Mine sure did. After the fact I found out that these tumors run in my mother's line of the family. I'm just the lucky one where it became cancerous. If I broke my leg or was hit by a car I'm heading to an emergency room. But if I am having pain in my stomach, can't sleep well or have headaches won't stop I'm going to take a look at my life. What is going on? What changes can I make? And then I'm going to take the herbs that can support my body while I make those changes. Herbs are not a bandaid. They take actions in our bodies that allow the body to heal itself. They work as cleaners, builders, nourishers.
I am on the healing path now. After 4 months in bed I have been striving to make my body strong again by exercising several times a week. I eat nutritious meals and eat out less. I drink a lot of Nettle tea to support my body and aid in the strengthening I'm doing. I take Miky Oat elixir when my nervous system feels overwhelmed as I slowly climb this last hill to full health. I see an Accupuncturist and a Naturopath/Energy Healer to continue to make changes for my healing and help bring my mind and body back into sync. I am very much myself. And I want to keep it that way. I don't expect to ever go through such a healing crisis again, but I am now at a higher risk. So I certainly won't be complacent. There are some things we can't keep from occurring in our bodies, but there are other times when our complacency is what allows dis-ease in our bodies. What changes can you make today that are proactive for your health? If you aren't sure make a list of discomfort in your mind and body. Can you see any issues that might group all of this together as an all encompassing problem? Sometimes the areas of our lives that we need help with really do all stem from one bigger change that needs to happen. Can you make one small change today that will make you feel better? I am doing that. I'm going outside on this sunny day (wish it were snowing on our mountain though) and I'm going to spend at least 30 minutes with the light on my head. I'm going to put my hands in the earth and begin to clean up what I was unable to last fall. The plants are still sleeping, but I left a mess out there. The exercise, the deep breathing, the connection to nature all are going to help keep my mind and body healthy.
If Stress is at the core of discomfort or dis-ease in your body you might want to check out my new course--Self Care in Stressful Times. I've brought 25 years of experience in dealing with my own stress to these lessons, lectures and activities. As I said I'm still adding more-- recipes, resources and videos to help you find the right techniques for you in your own self healing.
Time for me to get outside!