My 6-year-old daughter has a headache. She is moaning in the back seat of the car; she sounds so uncomfortable.
I go through a list in my head….maybe she had too much sugar today, maybe she needs some Tylenol, maybe she's getting sick. Being aware that my first response is usually worry, I decide to breathe through my concerns and simply say, what can I do to help you?
She says nothing, she has her eyes closed. When we get home she gets out of the car and lies down. She breathes deeply.
She says she thinks she needs food. She joins us at the dinner table, takes a few bites, and then asks if she can be excused to lie down again. She repeats this pattern….eat, lie down, breathe.
She asks for a foot rub with essential oils. I assume she wants her favorite oil, but she decides to look through all of them so she can decide. She is not finding what she needs. She asks if we have one that smells like lemons.
I am surprised, she has never used lemon oil before (I mostly use it for cleaning). I find it and she smells it - she wrinkles her nose and says it's not right.
I mention that I have one called Citrus Fresh, a mixture of lemon, orange and a few other oils. I have never used it so it needs to be opened. She smells it and says, "this one".
I rub her feet and she continues to breathe and relax. She gets up to put on her pajamas, and I decide to check my oil reference book. I am unfamiliar with citrus fresh; what is it for exactly?
I smile as I read - Citrus Fresh is a blend which may help enhance the feeling of well being in children…..it opens the lymphatic system and stimulates the immune system…it may be useful for relaxing, calming, and balancing the system.
I tuck her in to bed and say, do you know you are my teacher? Do you know you remind me how to take care of myself? You remind me that we all have information; we just need to be quiet and listen.
She says, "I know" and then falls asleep in a matter of minutes.
Cathy Adams is a certified parenting coach, yoga instructor and mother to three girls.
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