In the gaps of time this weekend, I’m watching season three of Netflix’s Atypical, a show that has given me more perspective about teaching individuals with Autism than any graduate or professional development course ever did. In the episode I finished this morning, protagonist Sam is tasked with an assignment about essence. Specifically, he has to depict the essence of a chosen animal, not just draw what the animal looks like. This throws his logical mind into chaos. Just what is the essence of a penguin?
As the episode spun on, I got to thinking about the little amber glass bottles that sit atop by bathroom counter, aside my kitchen sink, inside of a pouch in my purse and upon my desk and my bedside table. Essential oils. The essence of plants, some singular, some blended, all simply the best. I wasn’t surprised when Sam’s art teacher rolled on some lavender essential oil, saying it calms him. Girl… if you only knew what these essences have done for me.
Don’t get it twisted—the contents of these bottles cannot treat, diagnose, cure a darn thing. What they have done for me… how do I put this? The essence of these plants help me to slow down, look around and see this life for what it really is… and just how sweet it can be, if we chose to participate from that perspective. These aromatic liquids have been a tool for me to ground into my body and to use my senses and my higher faculties with clarity. They’ve reminded me that I don’t have to sprint through life complaining from Sunday through Thursday like so many choose to do. They’ve allowed me to find a way through the mind mess and into a place of peace… and they help bring me back into alignment when I fall away from that peace.
As Sam searched for the essence of his chosen penguin using his thoughts, his notebook and the support of his teacher, family and best friend as tools along the way, I couldn’t help but think of my journey, searching for the essence of me, of how I want to show up and serve in this world. I use my thoughts, I have many notebooks and I am surrounded by incredibly supportive people, many of whom I met through the essential oil community. I look up from my laptop and see these little bottles, donning labels like Humility, Acceptance and Hope, like Light the Fire, Sacred Frankincense and Harmony, like Lemon, Geranium and Peppermint… the essence of these plants helping me get to the essence of who I am, what I want and how I want to be in this world.
Take a moment today. Breathe deeply. Close those beautiful eyes. Listen to you. What is at your core? Drop the “stuff” and get down to the essence. Give yourself permission to shine in that truth.
And, if you need help getting down to it… I sure have a way to help you. Much love.