A personal story of anxiety and botanicals
To add more to that aspect of the story I have lived and coped with an anxiety disorder my whole life. I don’t mean that I worry needlessly about the little things… I mean, at times, crippling anxiety that changes the way I interact with the world sometimes followed by long and lonely depression that takes years to bounce back from. I had seen every mental health care professional available to me beginning when I was 12 and the general recommendation was pharmaceuticals and behavioral therapy indefinitely. One medication after another and I didn’t feel any better. I wasn’t able to attend public school anymore and just didn’t ever feel like that was going to “fix” me. While I understand now that this is a part of who I am all I wanted then was for it to be over.
After years of treatment I made the decision that I would like to try it differently. So while checking in with my counselors I quite taking the medications. It was a rough year but I was feeling like I could do this. Finding and exploring new ways to support my body and mind and find my way. I had only been off of my medications for a short time, maybe 6 months, before I became pregnant with my first child. Shortly after, when I was 5 months along, my father was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. Practically a death sentence. It was devastating to say the least. Needless to say my entry into motherhood was a bit rocky but I had found my anchor, my community and they helped hold me up.
Diving in with herbal medicine
Over the years I have delved deeper and deeper into the world of the wisdom of plants and used many remedies for my family to support or heal their immune systems, soothe cuts and scrapes, balance my own hormones and treat fevers along with other childhood coughs and colds and the occasional flu. I have a medicine cabinet full of tinctures, tonics and magic that I go to before doing anything else. I found relieve in the remedies I prepared myself or by others I knew. I found power in words with others who were facing similar struggles and while its a continuous struggle I found and am still finding some relief. I am excited to start a new chapter in my work and in my life and have been given the opportunity to move forward in a formal study of plant medicine. Its been years in the making and is a life long learning experience that I am thrilled to be involved in. I can’t wait to share more about my lessons and experiences with you all so stay tuned.
I want to add that this is my journey and I would never judge another person’s struggle or the choices they make to be able to cope with mental illness. While plants and nutritional therapy have the power to support everyone, with medication or without, I do not recommend changing any therapy for mental illnesses without consulting with your own physician or therapist. This is what has worked for me and I still use community resources for my own mental wellness in addition to botanical medicines.