My herbal journey began after the birth of my fourth child and a long episode of overlooked and undiagnosed postpartum depression. A homeschooling mama of four children, I desperately began seeking alternative health treatment so I could just make it through the day. At the time, the essential oil business was booming. I looked into the oils but felt that, while they certainly have their place, they seemed a bit too strong and powerful for what I needed…I needed gentle, nurturing plant love to help me flourish and thrive. So I decided to look directly at the plants from which they came.
Being a homeschool family, I knew that the only way I’d prioritize herbal studies of my own was if we did it as a family. And so our herbal journey began. We spent an entire season of Advent studying the plants that made up the smells of the season: cinnamon, cloves, peppermint, cacao, pine. We tinkered in the kitchen, dabbled in the garden, and took our nature study lessons to a whole new level. We found love in botany and herbs and healing.
Inspired by this new (yet deeply innate knowledge), I decided to invest in myself and I enrolled in Sage Mountain where I studied for three years under Rosemary Gladstar. Each new lesson, each new plant seemed to inspire and drive me to learn more…and the more I learned, the more I shared. I shared everything I learned with my own children who have now developed a deep appreciation for healing naturally (they love nothing more than a collection of herb jars and the freedom to create formulas based on the knowledge they have acquired). My love of teaching fueled a local movement where I began teaching botany and plant identification classes at a local homeschool co-op and I eventually formed classes for adults interested in herbal knowledge.
Over time, I began to notice that not every plant worked for every person. Curious as to why, I began researching and found the key to effectively using herbs: learning to balance the energy of the plants with the energy of the person. I admired the systematic way the Chinese diagnose and treat and so I eventually found my way here, in 2019, to East West Planetary School of Herbology where I am consistently challenged to learn more and supported by an amazing group of elders and budding herbalists. I have grown exponentially as an herbalist in the past two years and I attribute that to the support system this school offers along with the challenging course work and the annual seminars.
At the end of the day, I may be defined by plain words: Wife. Mom. Homemaker. Homeschooler. Herbalist. But my life is anything but plain. It is full of beauty and gratitude and I feel it in the simple things of life: deep dark chocolate, a steaming cup of herbal tea, freezing time with the click of a camera, and sharing what I know through teaching (be it formal classes or one-on-one consultations). I am grateful for each step along this herbal journey and I remain prayerful that I am able to continue to share my knowledge with those around me. You can find me blogging at www.witheveryintention.com, you can follow me on instagram @witheveryintention and you can find a short video of us at the beginning of our herbal journey over here https://youtu.be/lWKGLRrGz7c