By Domonika Dvoranova
Me and Katarina are joined by journalism. A few years ago, we worked for the same woman’s magazine. When I later moved to Belgium for a year and Katarina moved to Switzerland, we stayed in touch only virtually. Today we are connected by a different kind of work – we are both stay-at-home moms living abroad. My name is Dominika and my husband, and I moved to Austria three years ago. I’ve been home with my kids for almost seven years.
This summer I realized I forgotten about myself. I have been working literally days and nights and I did not take enough time to rest. I saw my family being nervous because of me.
And in my cup of energy were only a few drops left. I had to change something. But I did not know how to do it. We are living abroad alone, and I am with the kids all day long. Where to find the time to relax? At that moment, I needed more than just an evening or a few hours during the weekend when my husband was able to take the kids.
Therapy in a bottle
I have owned high-quality essential oils for a longer time. I used them especially when me and my kids had a cold or stomach ache. They always helped us to get better without visiting a pharmacy or doctor. I started to read more about essential oils and found out that they also help with exhaustion, nervousness, fears – they are simply good for our soul. That inspired me because I wanted to be more calm and joyful! Little did I know – the smell nerves are linked to that part of the brain that plays a key role in triggering emotional reactions. Therefore, every essential oil, thanks to its chemical composition, affects a certain emotion.
I started using essential oils differently. They have become part of my daily rituals, and today I know that thanks to them, I can be a calm and joyful mom again. The basil, oil of renewal, came into my life first. It is recommended for feelings of burnout, fatigue, and low vital energy. That was something for me! I started diffusing it daily along with the lemon oil. The smell of basil essential oil is very intense and one or two drops in the diffuser go a long way. At the same time, I started rubbing it on the area of the adrenal glands, which react very sensitively to the stress in our life, and we feel exhausted. And what happened? In my house it can look like a bomb has exploded, I am still able to smile.
My advice: take 20 drops of basil in a 10 ml roll-on and fill it up with the fractionated coconut oil – you have ready-to-use essential oil.
At the same time, I was eager to let go of the urge to control everything. I wanted to trust my children and my husband that they also know what to do. You know that feeling that everything is up to you, and if you don’t control it, something’s going to happen. That is what I wanted to work on. Every day I rub on my shoulders a diluted wintergreen (I use 10 drops for 10 ml roll-on) in the fractionated coconut. This oil teaches me to trust in the flow of life. In my household you can regularly smell cypress which is an oil of movement and current. It helps me alleviate my perfectionist tendencies. Perfection and kids do not go well together, and it burns our energy fast.
Put the joy first
In addition to the fact that essential oils smell daily in my home, I use spare moments of the day when I do something that delights me and brings me to other ideas other than the list of household chores. They say small daily rituals help prevent feelings of burnout. Well, I am here for it!
Every morning I read a daily meditation and randomly selected quote from the book. I simply employ the mind with positive thoughts. Because what we are paying attention to, that is growing. After breakfast, I made a commitment to read one chapter from the book. During morning hygiene, I take an extra minute for myself and apply a cream with a drop of lavender to help moisturize my skin. While I cook the lunch, I listen to a podcast. In the evening I turn on the diffuser again with soothing and relaxing oils such as bergamot, vetiver, and lavender.
Aromatherapy brings joy to my life. I feel much better and most days I am a calm mom. That is what I really wanted for myself. Maybe my experience will inspire you to include scents in your life. And although us moms living abroad can feel alone and without help, we don’t have to be alone – nature’s gifts have always been here to help. It’s up to us whether we use them or not.
Which scent reminds you of happiness? Start with getting THAT one oil. Feel free to share your favourite scent with me on Instagram – @momfromheart.