Tuesday, September 03, 2013

Essential Oils: Where Do I Start? - Part 1

So...essential oils. My love of all things 'smell good and feel good' was intensified by massage school.  It's because of massage school that I got picky about how my lotions felt and smelled.  It's because of massage school that my conscience started pricking about what was in my soaps and shampoos.

Y'all, I think what I'm trying to say is that massage school was a life changing experience.  On so many levels.  But let's not dwell on all that.  Let's talk about essential oils.  That's what's on my mind.

Almost three years ago now, a friend of mine mentioned she used essential oils for taking care of her and her family's health.  What?? I knew to use lavender for ear infections and in the tub to relax and on a cut.  I knew my favoritest soap lady in the whole wide world used them in her fabulous soaps and personal care items.  I knew how to make my own household cleaners with them.  But to use oils for anything else, I wasn't so sure about.

I started researching.  I don't like to research, people.  It makes my head hurt.  There's always conflicting stuff and I basically just want somebody to do the dirty work for me and give me a pretty answer with a bow neatly tied on top.  But I put on my big girl panties and started poking around.

Google turned up two major answers to essential oils to be used medicinally - Young Living and doTERRA.  And my head did indeed hurt.  Not only was there a lot of information to take in, but there was the fact that these two companies are basically rivals and there are negative things out there about both companies.  (There ARE other companies, these are just the two big boys.) 

I bought a few of the Young Living oils and a few of the doTERRA oils and tried them out.  I was pleased with the scents, but I wasn't really sure what to do with the oils.  Mostly, I just put a drop or two in our humidifiers to help ward off the winter germs.

Finally, my super-decisive college room mate jumped in with doTERRA.  Seeing it as a chance to learn together and have yet another thing to keep our conversations lively, I followed suit.  It's been fun to trip through this experience with Lora!  We bring different kinds of experience and 'expertise' (I use that term very loosely) to the table.  We've even pooled our ignorance with a live audience and she very kindly posted it on her blog for the world to see.  We have such a special relationship, y'all.

I'd like to tell you I'm usually more 'with it' but it'd be a lie.  That's a pretty good glimpse into me...talking with barely a sense of direction but waving my hands around because, well... I don't know why.

And if you're still here after THAT confession of stupidity... let's talk about what I've learned so far.  It's barely a scratch on the surface, but it's a truth.

Wait.  Let's have the disclaimer: I'm not a doctor or a medical professional of any kind (though I did suffer through cadaver labs during massage school) so DO NOT take my word for anything.  Do your homework.  Even if it makes your head hurt! 

Here's what I LOVE about essential oils, other than the ahhhhh-mazing smells:  They are safe.  They are effective.  There are no scary side effects.  And they just smell. so. good.

We use our oils every single day.  Joshua and I use them to address everything from achy joints to upset tummies to urinary tract infections.  My kids know the oils and the uses of many of them and love to tell me what oil they need for what ailment.  If I agree with their diagnosis, they skip off to get the oil and take care of themselves. Or, and I like this one better, they come curl up next to me so as to get the added benefit of some mama therapy.

I keep our oils sitting out on the kitchen counter where we can all reach them.  This sounds scary to mamas when we think of the warning labels on all the drugs we have lounging around in our medicine cabinets.  But that is one of the most beautiful things about using essential oils: I'm not afraid of how they could hurt my kids.  There are a few exceptions, but on the whole, it's just peaceful knowing they are that natural and effective.

I didn't get into essential oils to start a business.  I got into them because it just made sense, given the health choices we have made in our lives as a family, to have essential oils as one of the major tools in our toolbox of well-being.  And here's the thing:  Once you have a knowledge base concerning essential oils, you can't help it.  You want to know more and you want to try them.  And then you want to know more and try more and it's okay because this is good for you!

I believe in the integrity of this company and their oils and I want to simply share with you some of what I've learned.  It's hard to know where to begin because there is SO much to share!  In an effort to not overwhelm anyone and to not ignore my family because it'd take fo-ev-uh to type it all, I'll be posting once a week for the next several weeks concerning what I know, what I'm learning, and what I love about doTerra and essential oils.  If you have any questions, please ask!  It makes it easier to know what direction to go in when I know what you are looking for!

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