The Door of Herbalism by Kelsey Middleton, Herbalist

May 07, 2022

The Door of Herbalism by Kelsey Middleton, Herbalist
Holistic herbalism is a door. 
It’s a door that opens a pathway of ever-evolving exploration. 
Through that door, there are roots and branches, mountains, and waterfalls, there are rivers, and the sea.  
There is truth and depth, and an endless amount of healing and growing. 
Each turn, reveals something new. 
It brings connection back to self, and back to the planet from which we were born. 
The planet from which we need to survive, who provides for us, 
and everything we need.  
All that it takes is someone who is willing to walk through it. 
Willing to explore, to listen, to open their eyes and see something new. 
Willing to take a turn down this path, or that one. 
Willing to sometimes, take the longer road to find out where it leads to. 
Willing to slow down and participate in their own healing. 
It is yours for the taking.
Take a breath and walk through.

A lush hiker's trail framed by a tunnel of new growth.

Herbalism works.

There is plenty of scientific research proving that it does. It has been used in every culture around the world, as part of our ancestral connection to the earth and healing. Now that we live in a world with access to so much, it can seem overwhelming. Why are there so many options? Well, that is because there are so many plants, found natively all over the world, that can have a similar affinity to certain body systems and illnesses. 

Herbalism works.

However, some people may turn away due to the way in which it does, or doesn’t. When compared to some western medicine, one may not find that herbs help them achieve their goals because the results do not always present themselves as quickly or as boldly. They are not a one-fix, quick-fix solution. When I say holistic herbalism, what I mean is, one may not be able to simply take an herb and have their problem go away. This is the allopathic western model–the one-pill or a one-herb-fix. Instead, in addition to the herbal remedy, one often needs to look at their diet, the contribution of stressors in their life and how they cope with those stressors, their amount and quality of sleep, how much movement and exercise they are getting, their spiritual practice, and other supplements they may incorporate. In a nutshell, it involves how they are taken care of physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. All of these components make up a person’s overall health. And all of these aspects of healing work best, when they can be done in congruence. 

A lot of folks walk through the door because an aspect of their health needs and deserves some attention. Often, they are at a point where their ailment cannot be ignored anymore, and it is significantly interfering with life.  Or perhaps, the western approach is just not working up to expectation, or the side effects that can be caused by western medicine are not worth how they might be helping. Their healing is incomplete, and they are looking to explore other routes. 

Herbalism helps us find the root cause of illness and imbalance. It nourishes us from the inside out. It expands our health and wellness, not just putting a band-aid over it. It wakes up our body’s natural ability to heal. It sends signals and support to our bodily systems and organs to function the way they are supposed to. We are an incredible species with an amazing ability to heal and overcome. And with the aid of our herbal plant allies, alongside the guidance of holistic natural healers, we can find harmony in health that we deserve and want. The road to recovery can seem possible again.

If you are curious about this route of medicine, start small. Open the door; take one step along the path. Look around. Take your time. Observe, connect, listen. Read, go out in nature, talk to a holistic nutritionist, herbalist, or naturopath. Be willing to try something. Be willing to try something for longer than you think, and stick with it. The results come when you are least expecting them. Don’t get me wrong, there are ways in which a formula or remedy can immediately take you out of an anxiety attack, or put you straight to sleep, or stop your UTI dead in its tracks. If we didn’t also get results like that, we would be in a lot of pain. However, I want to encourage anyone who is wondering about herbalism or is curious about incorporating it into their life, or the life of a loved one, stay patient and willing. Walk through the door and stay awhile. Continue your exploration and stay open to what plants and modalities may work best for you. It is a journey. And it is filled with nourishment and hope. All people deserve to heal, and there is a path for you. 

Be well for now,  

Hope to see you soon on your journey,