Saturday, April 11, 2015

Week Eight: Essential Oils & Herbs VS. Antidepressants

This week was one of the worst yet.  I broke down balling my eyes out at the post office because my label wasn't scanning right.  Seriously, what the heck?  The ladies at the post probably think I'm a lunatic.  I told Kevin I wanted to quit the business and go to work at somewhere like walmart because I can't handle it anymore. I cried more in the last 7 days than in the last 7 months.  The only reason I can think would cause it to be so horrible was my period.  Hormones suck sometimes.  I feel so bad for my poor husband.  It so happened that this week Kevin was at home because he had surgery last week.  He is seriously the best husband on the planet.  When I melted down and tried to give up, he was patient with me and just loved on me.  Once I was calm and feeling better, he told me that if I quit the business it would be a huge waste of talent.  God has given me this wonderful gift of creativity and the ability to have my own business.  I need to be a good steward of this gift, not abandon it when things get rough.  I'm so thankful to have a man that knows how to ground me.  He's been such a rock in my life since the first day I met him over 4 years ago.  He is just the most amazing thing.  I fall more in love with him daily.  

I have been VERY undisciplined with my oils this week.  

I have just been so stressed and constantly having to remember to reapply them is stressful.  I have 9 orders ready to ship on monday though, so next week should be a lot more relaxed.  

Our lease ends in a couple weeks and we have been searching for months for a place to live, whether another rental or buying a home.  We are signing a lease on Monday; praise God!  It is a HOUSE in a good location.  Yay!  I'm so excited to live in a house after three years of apartments!  It's three bedrooms, so we have plenty of room for my growing business.  

I've been majorly neglecting Jesus lately.  I'm so thankful that His grace isn't contingent on my obedience.  I need to just stop everyday and remember Him.  I was telling a friend today about the meaning of the tattoo on my wrist.  She asked if it really does help me to reflect on Jesus and I said yes, but to be totally honest, it should affect me much more than it does.  I got the hebrew word "zakar" tattooed on my wrist to be a constant reminder of Christ, of the gospel, of who I am in Him, of what He has done, of who His is. I mean, yeah, when I glance at it, I do think of Jesus most of the time, but it's more just a part of my body.  I want to live my days constantly shouting out a broken hallelujah.  

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Weeks Six & Seven: Essential Oils & Herbs VS. Antidepressants

I had been super excited because bergamot had cleared up the acne on my chest where I put elevation.  Then two days later, I had a rash on that entire side of my chest.  It doesn't hurt, but it is very discolored.  I stopped using both on my chest to wait for it to heal, however it's been almost two weeks and it's still red and spotty.  

I restocked my supply of Mood Elevator, Concentrated, from Natures Sunshine.  It really does help.  I also started taking NS probiotics today.  We'll see if I notice it affecting my body at all.  

My mood has been pretty good lately.  My period is super late (which is normal for me) and that makes me a bit cranky, but other than that, I've been good.  I took a few hours off this week and had some "me time."  I didn't realize how much I needed it until afterwards.  My self esteem has been pretty low lately, so I went to forever 21 and tried on pretty dresses to make myself feel pretty.  It was really fun and much needed.  

Kevin had hernia surgery yesterday.  He's in a lot of pain, but doing well.  His best friend from Lynchburg came to help him get up the stairs and is hanging out for a few days.  This surgery made us realized how amazing our new church family is!  A friend from community group brought us dinner last night so I wouldn't have to worry about cooking while taking care of Kev and a bunch of community group friends are planning on coming over tomorrow night to check on Kevin and spend some time with us.  We are so very blessed.  It took many many months to find a church home and it was so worth the wait!

Easter is tomorrow, which means reminders of redemption and grace upon grace.  I feel so soaked in Christ's love during this time.  I hope that all of you can know the beauty of His resurrection.  Peace & grace to you.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Week Five: Essential Oils & Herbs VS. Antidepressants

It's hard to believe it has been 5 weeks since I started using essential oils.  I had planned on making these weekly posts super informational so that I could hopefully help other people dealing with this in the future (because I personally have read a TON of blogs about people doing similar things to help me decide to do it), but my writing has been more like a personal journal..  Maybe once I finally find my happy combination of oils and herbs and feel like this journey is a success, I can write a long blog post about all the pros and cons and ups and downs and ins and outs, but for now, I hope y'all don't mind that I'm going to continue writing like a journal with some EO informational items.  We'll start with that today.

I added 4 new oils this week (just the last 3 days actually).  Bergamot, Geranium, Juniper Berry, and Balance (grounding blend).  I put Geranium and Juniper in roller bottles with fractionated coconut oil so that I can use them on my feet because I HATE the smell.  Seriously, I think geranium is repulsive.  Kevin thinks it smells fine though, so I think it might just be me.  I missed several days of vitamins this week, but the days I do take them, I think I feel a difference, so I really need to get my act together on that one... The oils are definitely helpful and I'm really thankful for them because life keeps getting more and more stressful.  Oh and I'm not having any side effects from withdrawal anymore.  Praise God!

A buyer from contacted me earlier this week about wanting to sell crafting by knight products.  CRAZY.  So we're having correspondence with them and working on setting up our first zoology event.  It's really not going to make me much money at all, but we think the exposure will be worth it.  Zulily is a very very popular site, so maybe someone will see some crafting by knight paper flowers, but not be exactly what they want, so they'll place a custom order on etsy.  Who knows, but we feel it's worth a shot. :)

Monday, March 16, 2015

Week Four: Essential Oils & Herbs VS. Antidepressants

This week has had a lot of highs and lows.  My withdrawal symptoms have subsided for the most part.  I don't feel particularly depressed, but I have been crying a lot, mainly at television shows... I haven't been taking welbutrin daily this week, just whenever I realize I haven't taken it in a few days, which also means I haven't been taking my vitamins.  There are just SO MANY of them.  I've been doing so well with my oils though.  Yesterday I put in an order for 4 new oils to add to my routine.  

I got featured on a Richmond located shop treasury list on Etsy this week.  Looking through my fellow vendors, I discovered one of the shops made diffuser necklaces for essential oil aromatherapy.  Check out the shop here.  Although I'm an etsy vendor and should support other local shops, I'm also a DIYer to the extreme, so I found a cute little locket type thing that would fit a little pom pom and put it on a necklace with a little flower charm I already had.  It's cute and I'm loving having the scents around my neck all day.  If you aren't into DIY and would like a diffuser necklace, you should totally buy it from this RVA etsy vendor though.  

In other news, ETSY ETSY ETSY ETSY ETSY.  My bouquet is trending y'all.  I've been getting emails and emails from people telling me that they love my work and that they wish I would have been around 15 years ago.  It's been so flattering.  I have a difficult time accepting praise, so this is strange, but very exciting.  And the fact that it is MY wedding bouquet that is getting all this attention just makes me feel very special. 

In the entire month of February, I got 191 total favorites on etsy.  In this first 15 days of March, I have gotten 1,585 favorites.  

Oh and Kevin and I have been totally up in the air about what we're doing in life.  We decided not to renew our lease because our apartment is so expensive, but now we have less than 60 days to find a new place to live, whether that be in an apartment or a house we buy, or in Richmond or anywhere else in this world.  We're so very confused.  It's harder now that I'm not on my meds, but we'll figure it all out and hopefully we'll get to have a baby in the next year or so.  

Much love to you, blog world.  

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Week Three: Essential Oils & Herbs VS. Antidepressants

Week three has been quite the doozy. 9 days off zoloft and the antidepressant discontinuation syndrome is in full swing.  The vertigo is so bad I'm constantly tipping over and tend to fall back down when I stand up to fast.  Brain zaps are still driving me crazy.  I've also had a lot of random waves of extreme nausea.  It comes on out of no where and I've been having it happen most nights and at least a few times during the day.  I wonder if morning sickness is anything like this??  If it is, yuck!  I'm thankful for tums and ginger ale.  Hopefully all these physical side effects of getting off zoloft will be over soon.  

I'm thinking about adding some additional oils to me regime.  My depression has been okay, but I did have a panic attack this weekend.  Kevin made me do a little yoga and calmed me down.  If I could get caught up on all of my orders for the business, I'd like to try to start doing yoga and exercise on a regular basis.  I'm going to order doterra's Balance "grounding blend" and possibly geranium and bergamot. I'm also thinking about getting a diffuser.  

I'm really happy to be on this journey towards natural health. I'd totally appreciate any prayers for continued healing.  I'm so thankful for all the support that I have in my life.  I had no idea how beautiful of a support system I have.  Praise God!

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Week Two: Essential Oils & Herbs VS. Antidepressants

Hey y'all! I've been using essential oils & herbal supplements for 14 days now!  Things have been going decently well.  Life is sort of stressful at the moment, so that doesn't help.  Crafting by Knight is going very well, so well in fact that I can hardly keep up.  And Kevin and I just have a lot to pray about our future, and that has been weighing pretty heavily on me.

This week I got little roller bottles and defractionated coconut oil to mix in the roller bottles with my oils.  It is a ton easier to regularly apply oil on my back and feet when I can just roll it on.  

The only consistently odd thing that I've been experiencing this week is being hot when I logically should be cold. I'll go to sleep with all the blankets and sheets thrown off of me and still wake up sweaty and heated.  Kevin says my body has been crazy hot when he gets home in the middle of the night too.  It doesn't just happen at night either, I was driving around in 36 degree weather with the window down and my sleeves rolled up.  I finally bought a thermometer.  I've been waking up with a lower than usual body temperature even though I feel super hot.  Fortunately, it's not really a big deal and I think it will go away in time.

Thursday I took my last 50mg of Zoloft.  Now that 2 days have gone by without it, I've started having some side effects tonight...  In November 2012, I switched from Lexapro to Zoloft.  Both are very addictive SSRIs.  Weaning off Lexapro was awful because I got these things that people in the antidepressant community call "brain zaps."  They are common in antidepressant discontinuation syndrome, particularly in lexapro and zoloft.  

Brain zaps are basically what they sound like.  It's like an electrical shock shoots through your head causing dizziness, blurred vision, pain, and fatigue for a few seconds.  It so far is only happening when I walk around, but it happens every few seconds while I'm standing.  When I sit or lay down it seems fine.  If I recall, when withdrawing from lexapro, it got to where it happened while sitting and lying down also, but only lasted a week or two.  So I'm on day 2 of withdrawal I suppose.  I'm going to try taking extra GABA plus because it supports brain function and see if it helps at all.  

Week 3 here I come!

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Week One: Essential Oils & Herbs VS. Antidepressants

A little background: I've been taking antidepressants on and off for close to ten years.  Now that my sweet hubby and I will be wanting to start having babies in the next couple years, I really want to get off of them.  I need to find a way to manage my depression and anxiety without harsh chemicals.  There is nothing wrong with antidepressants and I am so very thankful for all that they have helped me over the years.  I just don't want anything that could be possibly harmful for my future baby.  And I'm very intrigued by natural remedies.  I want to get to know my body better before I grow a human.  :P 

Medicines I've been taking for a year(ish):
Zoloft 100mg daily
Welbutrin 150mg daily

New herbal/oil regimen:
Serenity (Calming blend) essential oil
Elevation (Joyful blend) essential oil
Lavender essential oil
Natures Sunshine Mood Elevator TMC Concentrated 
Natures Sunshine 5-HTP Power
Natures Sunshine GABA Plus
Natures Sunshine Prenatal Vitamin
A generic probiotic

For the last 10 days, I've halved my zoloft and taken the same amount of welbutrin at usual.

For the last 7 days, I've been taking 1 mood elevator, and 2-3 HTP, GABA, probiotic, and prenatal each day.  Elevation I put on my heart, Serenity on my wrists and big toe, and Lavender on my spine and big toe.  I am trying to put the oils on every 4 hours, but I haven't been very disciplined about reapplying the oils to my feet and spine throughout the day.  I've ordered some roller bottles and coconut oil to hopefully help me reapply the oils throughout the day.  

I also am trying to memorize Psalm 23.  I read it this week and felt like it should be the scripture I cling to during this time of weaning off pills and finding out how my body responds to this new all natural regime.  I also plan to change my diet to more whole, natural foods, and cut out a lot of sugar... but as diet has always been a major struggle for me, I'm going to let this process take time.  Anyways, my first week went pretty well, and I'm excited to continue on in this journey!  

Here is Psalm 23!

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
    He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.[a]
    He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness[b]
    for his name's sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,[c]
    I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
    your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.
Surely[d] goodness and mercy[e] shall follow me
    all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell[f] in the house of the Lord