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My First Introduction to Essential Oils: From Eye-Rolling to Enlightenment

I often heard it said that we needed to believe the methods worked in order for them to work. This was not the case for me. However, knowing the plausible reason behind these methods working made it easier for me to see the impact they were having on me.
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NOT Medical Advice. Informational Purposes only. 

Introduction

When it comes to many forms of alternative or complementary medicines, I often heard it said that we needed to believe the methods worked in order for them to work. This was not the case for me. However, knowing the plausible reason behind these methods working made it easier for me to see the impact they were having on me. Here is an example of this type of situation regarding essential oils.

Be Brave Enough to Take One More Try

I know it sometimes hurts when hoping for something to finally work when struggling with health challenges.  But I want to give you hope anyway.  

From high tech treatments, 

to old school oils.

My Introduction to Essential Oils: From Eye-Rolling to Enlightenment . Hand of someone placing a drop of essential oil into steaming water

My First Introduction to Essential Oils

Just a little over twenty-four years ago, I was bringing my newborn home from the hospital after him being in a neonatal intensive care unit, NICU for seven weeks. No, not a premature birth. He had a heart problem. This problem caused his lungs to be very compromised. We were told he had oxygen stats of a drowning victim. Because of this, it seemed like once he was home, if someone looked at him cross-eyed, he’d just get another cold. Every cold or virus he had usually required at least one visit to the emergency room for oxygen and additional steroid medications for the weeks to come.

Home from the NICU

During the last month of 2000 and the first month of 2001, we had been so immersed in X-rays, lab tests, painkillers, antibiotics, pumps, respirators, and ten full days on the heart and lung machine (Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation: ECMO), we were drained and impressed with the skills of the doctors and nurses. It was followed up with what felt like a daily battle of just keeping him breathing. Hoping someday the indentation under his ribs from him struggling for breathes would someday stay gone. (Yes, even on those medications.) Hearing a casual acquaintance wanting to come by and show us how essential oils would help with this just seemed quite strange. But being new to town and her being so earnest, my husband and I let her come over.

Having never heard of essential oils or alternative therapies, to me, it seemed like we gave her permission to perform some type of ritual on him. She put some essential oil on the bottom of his feet, rubbed a little on his tummy, and waved her hands around in the air to disperse the scent. She placed a few drops in a mister and gave us instructions on how to use it.

Playing around with Oils

Meanwhile, my husband and I looked at each other with raised eyebrows. Really? We were thinking about all this stuff we have been through, and was still going through, with all its “modernity,” how on earth are old-fashioned oils and waving of the hands going to make any difference? We didn’t really understand how they worked, and with three children now under five, I didn’t feel like I had the time to get a good understanding of it either.

But since we didn’t mind how the smell of the essential oils would drown out the occasional stench of medicine-laden retched smells of dirty diapers, we tended to get the mister going whenever our son had a bowel movement. It helped with the smell, and besides, if it helped even just 2% for his breathing—to where we only needed to give the medication required only 4 of the 5 times—we figured we would give it a go. It was easy enough. Why not?

Not knowledgeable, 

low priority.

My Introduction to Essential Oils: From Eye-Rolling to Enlightenment . Hand of someone placing a drop of essential oil into steaming water

Reintroduced to Essential Oils

We eventually moved, he improved, and we ran out of our essential oil supply. We didn’t bother restocking, and then forgot about them. Every once in a while, I’d come across the mister that was gifted to us during a deep cleaning in the bathroom and wonder if I should throw it away or start learning and using essential oils again.

I never got around to tossing it. Not sure why, but I did eventually start learning about and familiarizing myself with these mystical essential oils. We saw it as a way of prevention because that’s what we were hearing. Still not convinced how or why it worked. We mainly did it for the smells of the house because I was scared to light candles with kids running around. Don’t get me wrong, I kept my house clean, but there is just something about the extra edge of scent that makes it feel homier.

We treated it like this for almost a decade until I became ill, very ill. No modern medicine had a solution for me, so I looked for other options, and it circled around back to essential oils among many other things. I have a list here at this blog (Chronic Health Problems) if you are curious to know more about what methods I tried. However, these methods, as well as the essential oils, didn’t really seem to work for me.

I was frustrated because it seemed like it worked for others, and I was confused why they didn’t work for me. It just didn’t seem fair. (I know, life isn’t fair.) However, what I discovered later, and what the main point for my entire website is about, is this complementary body system I think we aren’t aware of. By assuming this system, the Defensive Individual Shield Hypothesis (DISH), was there and then using the essential oils and other methods enabled me to make progress in my health.

Understanding the purpose, 

made it a priority.

My Introduction to Essential Oils: From Eye-Rolling to Enlightenment . Hand of someone placing a drop of essential oil into steaming water

Realizing What was Happening when Using Essential Oils

When you are on the fence and you are looking at what you know and what you don’t know, it is easier to gravitate towards the known even if it isn’t necessarily better. At one point in my life, I was at this crossroads, my doctor told me I needed this particular medication, but using the essential oil white angelica made me feel better than the medication did. However, I also had to decide between paying only $5.00 for the known (medication) or choosing white angelica essential oil ($65-75 at the time) and not knowing why it worked. Tough decisions to make, right!?

Fast forward five years, I now believe I understand why—on a big-picture level—this oil worked. I believe it helped me with what I have coined DISH, Defensive Individual Shield Hypothesis. I believe this DISH helps my body to sort. I think putting this oil on the outside of my body aided my body in manually making the DISH that my body was failing to make. (Learn about DISH here.)

With this DISH concept in mind, I found that instead of having to apply the essential oil regularly and in large areas on my body, I could place some on a tiny piece of a cotton ball and tape it to a specific spot on me (sometimes a meridian point). By doing this, I would not have to reapply it. I used tape and a cotton ball because undoubtedly whenever I tried to use a band-aid, the padding would slip out of the band-aid because of the oil and the sticky part of the band-aid would be the only part that remained.

For me, doing this was like putting a filter in place to enable my body to do what it was meant to do. I also found that if I alternated it with a homeopathic remedy, I could feel the strides in my health improve.

Conclusion

I know we know a lot, but we don’t know what we don’t know. Realizing the need to do my body’s sorting manually made it easier to understand the need and benefits of using essential oils. I believe it made the essential oils work better and made it possible for me to get better. It’s okay, smart even, to be reluctant about trying new things. Sometimes it takes time to warm up to the idea as well. But hopefully, you can see how realizing we have a sorting system that may need help when we are sick could change how we treat illnesses. It could make us understand better the value of essential oils. It could possibly someday even remove the mystery of why alternative treatments work.

Be Brave Enough to Take One More Try

I know it sometimes hurts when hoping for something to finally work when struggling with health challenges.  But I want to give you hope anyway.  

Cyndi Whatif
Cyndi Whatif

I am a patient turned author and guide. I share my hypothesis of an overlooked complementary body system which I believe determines whether or not a person has the opportunity to be well.

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