We are now through the first week of May and I am happy to send out my first email to my following community since the launch of my website, reconnectbodytherapy.com. This newsletter is intended as a space to share what I have learned to provide people with tips and practices to maintain the life that they want to live. I use my client feedback forms as a primary means to find what my immediate community is interested in. I have noticed a large push for holistic health knowledge, massage and bodywork, yoga, tea, poetry, and astrology. The message this month is about Herbs and how they can be a useful tool to help us release old habits and create new positive growth in our lives.
Astrologically we are coming to a full moon in Scorpio. Farmers also know this as the full flower moon. With so many gardens sprouting, greeting us with daily encouragement of new life, the push to create is strong. As I find myself beginning new challenges I realize how much I am letting go to create space for new. Spring-cleaning is the common phrase. Time to open the widows, clear the air, sweep the dust and reorganize priorities.
I ask myself “What am I creating this summer? What do I wish to share?”
In the past certain habits limited my ability to share my full potential. More specifically these were, unconsciously smoking tobacco, eating excess comfort food, and hibernation inside my body created by lack of exercise, stretching, and mindful activity. Some of these habits served me well during winter but as the weather becomes more inviting I feel drawn to be more active and use more of that energy I was consuming in the past months.
This time of clearing space can feel very satisfying and rather enjoyable. On the other hand it may cause grief. Releasing any habit in our lives no matter how big, small, or perhaps inhibiting, can bring up feelings of loss. It can be difficult to accept loss. When I try to hold on my go-to tactic is holding my breath. Holding the lungs or ones breath can come from a fear of letting go to release air. I would turn to cigarettes as well to hold onto a feeling. I found that I enjoyed the ritual but didn’t enjoy the clogging of my lungs that came with it. I had to decide to make a change.
I didn’t feel ready to release smoking from my life. Addiction to nicotine is strong enough, and then to take the physical habit out as well was too much. I created a smoking blend. This was good both for my lungs and my wallet. The way I did it was I started with a pouch of tobacco and I would mix a batch of half tobacco and half herbal blend. The herbs I used for this blend were Damiana, Blue Lotus, and Coltsfoot. Damiana is one of my favorites. An aphrodisiac used by Native Americans this herb increases the bodies circulation and can even bring feelings of joy and euphoria. It also has a very lovely earthy taste. Blue Lotus also known as Egyptian Lotus has been used as a spiritual tool. It helps relax the body and has been known to provide vivid dreams. Coltsfoot is a very medicinal herb that helps clear the lungs. It is recommended by both Western and Traditional Chinese Herbalists to aid coughing. Even for chronic coughs that come with emphysema or silicosis.
Damiana Blue Lotus Coltsfoot
3:1:2 3 parts Damiana : 1 part Blue Lotus : 2 parts Coltsfoot
I then took this blend and mixed in incrementally
1:4 1 part blend to 4 parts tobacco.
1:2 1 part blend to 2 parts tobacco
1:1 1 part blend to 1 parts tobacco
2:1 2 parts blend to 1 part tobacco
4:1 4 parts blend to 1 part tobacco
This gradual process would give me the nicotine fix and adjust my feelings toward the new flavors. Each batch I made I would add less and less tobacco until finally I was smoking 100% medicinal herbs and no more nicotine craving. Smoking became a very enjoyable experience and I felt in control of my body again. I benefited by creating a new pattern in my life to fill the space of an old one.
For anyone who is interested in making the blend I have great recommendations on where to find these herbs. Also feel free to get creative! Mugwart is a great herb and Mullen I choose not to use them because they were more difficult for me to use when smoking and also they gave me a little too much sleepy feeling. Great to add to your nighttime blend! For anyone who doesn’t feel like they have the knowhow in putting this blend together I am happy to get together and share with you how I blend.
Soon enough I was able to let go completely of inhaling smoke and I began the practice of burning sage to clear space. Sage clearing brings us back to that good old spring-cleaning. Smudging, as it’s called, is when you burn sage to brighten and transform a space. I personally find the ritual to be very enjoyable.
For all my friends who are not smokers this herbal blend is an amazingly delightful tea. Not only does it make you feel joyful and relaxed but also it has healing potential for our lungs and circulatory systems.
This is the holistic approach at its finest. As we cleanse our physical space we cleanse our internal physiological space and we can even take the ritual time of brewing tea to meditate and cleanse our internal mental state. * If you would like a guided meditation for your tea brewing ritual I will leave on at the end of this email.
I want to thank everyone for being in this communication. I want to also honor your willingness to hear these new and always growing ideas. I wish to leave you with this last chest-opening lung clearing herb Lungwort. Lungwort has beautiful flowers and is a wonderfully medicinal herb. I would also like to offer everyone who is here an opportunity to come in for a holistic bodywork session. This is to keep ourselves grounded into our body as we make our transitions into a fruitful summer. Some recommendations I have are for those still in their spring cleaning process I like to say “Lymphaticising your life!” is clearing our all the trash and dust and dirt that has accumulated in the house. Just like we clean our physical surroundings its important to clean our insides as well. If you want to learn more you can read about the lymph system on my website. For other who are looking more to energize their bodies and get moving I recommend Vibrational Healing Massage Therapy integrated with some excellent deep Full Body Breathing. These sessions bring us deep into our whole bodies and revile to us where we have room to grow invigorating our internal fire and drive to get busy!
I would like to offer everyone a 35% discount on your next session with me and all you have to do is message me the secret word Lungwort.
Thank you all. I am continually grateful.
* Guided tea meditation
I like to boil my water and poor it into my cup allowing the herbs to steep. This is when it is nice to center ones self and I like to use visualizations in my meditations. Lets just imagine our tea leaves becoming soft and porous as the hot water moves through it. Opening the leaves begin to release its nutritional benefits. We can be like these leaves. Soft, open, releasing, we can breath as the hot water moves through our bodies. Steam lifts out the tops of our heads creating a light sensation. Holding our cup we can cover the top with our hand leaving just enough room for our noses to peek in and inhale all that good chi energy released in the steam of our tea. By the time you finish your short 3-5 minute meditation your tea is steeped and ready to drink.