Hi, Everyone! Thank You for taking time out of your busy day to read my blog. I am new to blogging, but I hope to share information with you that is both interesting, as well as helpful. In the future you can expect to see Christina’s Cream of the Crop- Informational posts about ingredients, medicinal plants, essential oils and how their benefits can be worked into your daily lives or if you should avoid them all together.
Since this is my first post on Christina’s Cream of the Crop Blog- I thought I would start with telling you a little bit about me- Christina. Who am I and What have I experienced to bring me to this point in my life? First, let me point out that Natural Medicine is something that has always interested me, but what really made me apply that knowledge myself was my own personal illness.
To fully understand where I’m coming from let us go back a couple decades. At that point in my life I was married with three small children. Even with my husbands income we were struggling to make ends meet. I tried anything I could to make money- from waitressing to cleaning houses. No matter how hard I tried we were still behind and I felt as unfulfilled as ever. I knew there had to be more to life than that so I decided to go to nursing school to be an LPN. I drove for an hour a day and spent 8 hours a day in class five days a week for a year and a half to get my LPN. After that I got a good job working at the local hospital. Things were looking up, but I didn’t stop there. When I wasn’t working full time or being a mother to my three young children, I was studying non-stop in order to take tests for college credit and that is how I got my RN.
By 2003, Life was pretty good. My beautiful children were blossoming into intelligent young adults. I was financially stable and had a job I loved. At that point I had worked at the hospital for over ten years doing such things as Nursery, Intensive Care Unit and General Patient Care before I finally settled in to the Emergency Room. Of all of the positions I had worked before, Emergency Nursing seemed to be my forte. The fast paced environment kept me active and the constant treatment of patients kept my mind sharp and gave me new challenges everyday. I loved helping solve people's problems.
Then, out of the blue, I began to get overly tired. By tired, I mean I felt like I had run a marathon- TIRED. The same shifts in the Emergency Room that I had been working for years suddenly exhausted me so much it would take days to recuperate. A job I was once excited and passionate about, I would dread. One morning I woke up with a pain in my left ear- a VERY sharp, stabbing pain. A few days later, I began to have the same pain, only this time in my left eye. Next, that sharp, stabbing pain spread to numerous spots all over the left side of my face. As the days went on, these symptoms got worse and worse and worse and finally spread to the entire left side of my body. Eventually, I was no longer able to work at all. The pain got so bad I could no longer go outside in the sun. I could not do everyday tasks or be around loud noises or bright lights. I could not walk without dragging my left leg. I thought I was going to end up in a wheelchair for the rest of my life.
With the pain and fatigue more than I could tolerate, I went to many specialists and Doctors. I was sure at some point I would find the specialist that could tell me what was wrong and fix it- but that never happened. The best doctors I knew, who I had worked with for years and years and saw heal so many people, couldn’t even tell me what was wrong with me. All in all I was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Trigeminal Neuralgia, Epstein Barr Syndrome, two bulging discs and some other type of “virus”?? but not one doctor could tell me how to make the pain stop and my issue better. I slept in a recliner because the pain was too intense to lie flat. I could barely walk. There were times I would go days without sleep due to the pain. The specialists ran me through a battery of tests and were still unable to tell me how to be normal again. I was put on antidepressants, antibiotics, muscle relaxers, nerve pills, numerous pain pills and offered a surgery that “may or may not” help. One doctor told me it was “all in my head” and referred me to a Psychiatrist. When one more specialist asked me if I was “depressed” I had an image of shoving an ice pick in their eye, and asking them to live with that day in and day out and see if they were depressed. I knew something had to give.
At that point I had had enough. I finally decided to take my health into my own hands. Yes, I was a nurse and Yes, I had learned all about Western Medicine. But my heart and experience told me it was time to turn away from that and use what I knew- Herbs. It was finally time for me to apply that knowledge to my own health and heal myself. I had studied alternative medicines since I was introduced to plants and their healing properties from my grandmother when I was a little girl. Unfortunately, she passed away when I was 8, and after that I was pretty much on my own. After many trials and errors, and countless hours spent researching, I found that Astragalus Root made the pain go away.... and stay away! Various other supplements helped me regain my energy. Manipulation, energy therapy and craniosacral therapy realigned my body so I was finally able to stand up straight again without pain. After several months of alternative therapies ONLY, I was able to do something that numerous doctors and specialists hadn't been able to do. I had healed myself. I was me again. I could again function without pain or fatigue. I fully believe that if I had just blindly followed what the doctors told me and taken everything they had prescribed me without questioning how it would affect me I would be in a wheelchair by now on a slew of drugs that would have kept me from ever living a normal life again. Those were definitely the longest couple of years of my life- But I made it through and I learned so much having had those experiences. After several months of alternative treatments I was finally able to get back to work- but I was on a new path. I decided I wanted to share with people all of the knowledge I had about herbal medicine.
Since then I have started my own business, learned to perform numerous energy therapies, and added to my knowledge of medicinal plants, essential oils and numerous other alternative treatments. I currently work as needed at a local nursing home. I make all natural, herb-containing, mineral cosmetics, therapeutic lotions and soaps with uniquely formulated essential oil blends that are good-for-you. I also perform energy treatments on people and show them how they can apply herbs and natural therapies to their own lives. I even teach classes about herbs and natural therapies in a group setting several times a year.
I feel that I was put on this earth to help and heal people- and that is my primary goal when I create a new product. Yes, some of our products make you look beautiful and are fun to use but you will notice that those products also contain healing ingredients such as essential oils and crushed herbal powders. I am sure you have heard the saying “Beauty is only skin deep.” Well, what they don’t tell you is that beauty starts from within. What you eat and what you put on your skin, which is absorbed into your bloodstream, both must be considered when making your beauty routine more healthy. Yes, soaps, lotions and cosmetics that you put on your skin are absorbed into your blood- Just like nicotine patches or a nitroglycerine patch for example. Many of the products you use everyday contain toxic chemicals and you don’t even know it! That is why I started Christina’s Natural Qualities- to provide beneficial and safe cosmetics, lotions, soaps, and other products with high-quality, hard-working ingredients that are affordable and attainable for everyone. And that is why I am starting Christina's Cream of the Crop Blog- to inform you of the possible harmful ingredients in the products you are using and to educate you on how to apply herbs and other beneficial things into your healthy lives as well.
How and why I started Christina's Natural Qualities is a story for another time, and the topic for my next post. Stay tuned to find out why I started making good-for-you cosmetics- and what you could be putting on your skin that is detrimental to your health. Thank you all again for reading. If you have any questions, comments, concerns, or would just like to chat- you can contact me by email, phone, and facebook. Hope you are having a great day!