Yesterday I was driving in my car going to the gym. Sometimes I hate going because it seems like such an unnatural place to be getting exercise, so I cancelled my membership, but they told me I had another free month, so I thought, what the heck, I’ll just keep going for the yoga and sauna…ha!
I’m listening to NPR – I realized recently I had stopped listening to the news or looking at social media feeds because it was really bringing down my spirit. But story after story poured in about Venezuela, about Black Lives Matter, about the presidential campaign. Stories of children being killed, friends starving in South America, people harming and hating each other. I cried and my heart felt so heavy – and here I am, white girl in my box driving to the freaking gym. Even though I grew up poor, my current security and privilege had never been so apparent to me. I’ve had no words over the last month because of these heavy feelings, but now I want to share something of use.
In times like these, we may feel feelings of grief, trauma, loss, sadness, and anger, regardless of how directly we are being affected by the environment (if you’re not a spiritual person, think of it in terms of Quantum physics – one thing affecting another thing, even on the other side of the universe). There are Herbal Allies and support for you, which are easy to access. By that I mean that you can look to nature and its medicine for support – go to your local herb shop (or online), get some teas or tinctures, flower essences, walk by your nearest lake or park, sit outside and breathe some fresh air. You can also check out my “Work With Me” section if you would like to receive some acupuncture or massage to help you through this time, or tell a buddy if they need that.
Here are some ideas on how to deal right now:
- EXTRA SELF-CARE. That means go for more walks during the day than normal. Drink more water and herbal teas, less alcohol and caffeine. Take baths, sleep a LOT – sleep early. Eat nutritious food. Cry alone, in nature, or with friends and family. Ask for hugs.
- Be kind. Flipping off that guy in the car next to you will only make you feel worse (well, probably).
- Get some herbs to help your mind, nervous system, heart, digestion. Suggestions below.
- Do some yoga or breathwork – this could help get you out of the house and be with community (there’s donation-based classes if you’re broke)
- Take a class on herbs so you can get out and breathe fresh forest air and spend some time getting to know the outdoors. Check out Natalie Hammerquist of the Adiatum School in Seattle
Some of my favorite herbs for grief & trauma:
- Lemon Balm, Kava Kava, Passionflower, Chamomile, Oat Buds, Skullcap (there are more, but here’s just a few). Drink them singly as a tea (about 1 TB per cup of water), or get a tincture and take a dropperful or two a couple times a day. These are gentle, and although there’s a lot of other food and nutrient therapy you can have, these are easy to drink as a tea.
- Essential oils. Some health food or herb stores may have some blends for calming – Uncle Harry’s, Simpler’s Botanicals are brands I like. Or you can just get single ones like Lavender, Lemon Balm, Tulsi (Holy Basil), Bergamot, Orange – whatever smell resonates with you, calms you, brightens your spirit, makes you feel more centered. A drop in the hand, rub your palms together, breathe it in, or rub it on the back of your neck.
- Rescue Remedy – a great all around remedy when you feel suddenly panicked or overwhelmed (take as needed, either drops or the chewable pastilles).
- Yarrow – helps protect you from energy around you if you are feeling vulnerable (take as needed).
- Love-Lies-Bleeding or Borage – helps with the ability to move beyond personal pain, suffering or mental anguish; can help with heavy-heartedness & grief
- Beech – helps you with tolerance, and to see the good within each person & sitaution
- Calendula (pictured far above) – helps with healing warmth & receptivity (if you’re feeling argumentative, and lacking in receptivity in communication)
Please comment below if you have questions on where to go and what to do. Let’s support each other during this time, for each other and ourselves, to promote peace, healing, love. ❤ ❤ ❤
PLEASE NOTE: as with any herbal advice, please double check with your health care provider regarding any medications you are taking as some herbs will lower the efficacy of your medication.