*Disclaimer; I was not paid or given any free products to express these opinions.
The very first time Doterra was mentioned to me and how I needed to try it was when my father was diagnosed with Lung Cancer. Now I had already been using Essential oils... but this was supposed to be THE brand to go to.
My father was dying and I was desperate to try anything to give him some peace and relief. My bill with them was over $200 for 3 oils. Yes, you read that correctly. Full disclosure, I do not mind paying more for quality. I buy organic vegetables and locally grown from my farmer's market. So I was willing to pay for quality. But even more so...to dig into the way I was thinking at this time. I wasn't in my right mind when my dad passed. I did not have time to do price checking. My only concern was if these oils were real and could get here fast as I could not travel to the place where I normally went. I needed mail order.
They arrived a little later than what the website said. But still a fair amount of time. I take no issues with this.
After my father passed, which had absolutely no relations to the oils. He had end stage lung cancer, oils were for comfort... I started to do a little research on Doterra and their oils.
And again, let me stress... the oils were good quality. But I noticed right away that they were not much different, if any than the oils I already had in my home. So I got to thinking... why were these 2x and in some cases 3x the money?
Their website says: "certified pure therapeutic grade"
That sounds amazing, right? But what does it mean exactly?
"Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils is a Potentially Misleading Claim. No governmental agency or generally accepted organization "grades" or "certifies" essential oils as "therapeutic grade," "medicinal grade," or "aromatherapy grade" in the U.S." (aromaweb)
And the more I researched I found that not only is it basically a meaningless term. Doterra made it up. This next part is from their own website;
"Without an accepted standard for essential oil quality, doTERRA created its own testing process, calling it CPTG Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade®."
I started to feel a bit stupid. I wished I had reached out to other people in the cancer community before spending all that money. But the cancer industry, much like Doterra knows when people are desperate for health and a long life for ourselves or a loved one... well we would do just about anything.
Then I got really curious about their marketing techniques and the way they ran their company. Full disclosure, I despise MLM companies. I think they sell people pipe dreams, encourage bad Karma, and make you sell to your friends and family to be successful. What a nightmare.
The lady I bought mine from was a casual friend on Facebook. She tried to push me to join, and it kinda irritated me at the time because I kept having to reiterate to her that my father is dying. I am in charge of his hospice care. I have no time to join your team.
I also found it odd that she, and other sellers on Facebook insist you give them your email address so that they can further discuss the benefits and uses of these oils.
Why was this? Well I later found out Facebook has been laying the ban hammer on MLM company reps. Especially those who make statements not approved by the FDA.
Come to find out the FDA has been up their bums since 2014. And before you jump on the conspiracy theory train.... The FDA isn't anti Essential Oils. Neither is the National Cancer Society.
Again, not disputing Essential Oils. I think they are AMAZING! And if you want some science to back it up, check out this study: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4070586/
My issue is the shady dealings and over priced product of one company. So let's continue....
I still couldn't find anything that justifies the increased cost of these oils that use the same exact ingredients and sources as other companies.
And I wasn't alone. Many people and former reps have came fourth with their stories about the extreme costs of these oils. Many felt guilty for selling these products to people with limited income because they knew that there were cheaper alternatives out there.
(I will link some of those stories below)
One thing I keep hearing over and over is all the good this company is doing for people. How amazing their oils are for people. But if the average person can not afford the oil, what good are they actually doing?
I am a firm believer in this:
So exactly how much more money is Doterra to other companies? Let's break it down.
Doterra Lavender: $28.00 for 0.5oz
Eden's Garden Lavender $10 for 0.5 oz
Plant Therapy Lavender $6.95 for 0.5 oz
How about something as simple as Basil. Here are screenshots from their websites;
These are huge differences. And if you research just these two companies I used as examples (Eden's Garden & Plant Therapy) you will see they have absolutely outstanding reviews.
The big difference? 30% 40% and in most cases over 50% cheaper. Their blends are double and some go for over $100 for 15 ml. Why in the world is that?
I am not here to bash the quality of Doterra. Again, I purchased my own oils from the company in 2016. I was happy with the oil... but I felt I was cheated with the price.
Is Doterra a scam? In my honest opinion, all MLM companies are scammers. And most people will not make the money they are told. In fact, most could earn more getting a part time minimum wage job.
And their oils were not any better than most of the leading brands you can buy on the market. Including those sold in Walmart and other major retailers.
But ultimately this is a decision you have to make for yourself. And YOUR Karma.
Do you honestly feel it is morally right to sell people who may be struggling financially oils at 3x what other companies charge for the same quality oils? Because again, let me stress... the oils were good quality. But I noticed right away that they were not much different, if any than the oils I already had in my home. So why 2x and in some cases 3x the money?
Do you think it's fair to take advantage of people who are already paying HUGE medical bills? People with cancer? People with chronic illnesses?
Do you want to push products on your friends and family to make a little extra income?
People who trust YOU to help them make an important choice.
That is for you to decide. Personally, I can't lie to people just to make a quick buck.
If you found this blog post because you were worried about Doterra and heard some of the things I did... And now you're like crap, then where do I buy my oils?
Here are a few alternatives that I use. I encourage you to do your own research and make the best decisions for you and your family. There are MANY others out there. You could probably even find some small local person who makes their own blends as well.
Other blogs discussing Doterra:
Lover when you don't lay with me
I'm a huntress for a husband lost at sea
If I had you here, we were here together
I'd be boy and you'd be girl, beautiful
Calling moon and moon
Shoot that big bad hand
It'll drag me to your door
Now I won't see you no more
(Moon and Moon - Bat for Lashes)
Ashlie, Poppy Marie, and I pulled some universe cards and picked out our favorite crystals so they can be charged by the full moon tonight. We added some pinecones and simple earthy rocks we found on our hike over the weekend. We are trying to make this a mother / daughter tradition. It's really nice to have this to share with them.
The full moon means a lot of different things to different people. Some use it as an opportunity to remove the things that no longer serve us and to complete things we need to do.
Many cultures and people believe in following the cycles of the moon. One complete cycle of the moon takes exactly 28 days to complete. Similar to a women's menstrual cycle.. which is why some cultures believe the moon to be female. And a full moon being the time to embrace the feminine, emotional, creative and nurturing aspects of our lives.
I personally notice I am a bit more anxious around this time. Sometimes a bit combative. Whilst I have heard others experience happiness during a full moon.
Lots of different rituals are done on a full moon. Some really neat group meditations and gatherings. Beautiful candle ceremonies. Moon baths. Making alters.. Charging your crystal and pulling cards from your favourite decks. Some people make full moon teas and healing sprays (full moon nights that rain).
I love to focus / meditate on the things I need to work on, and the things I need to let go of. I keep a simple journal of monthly goals and I go through the ones I still need to complete and work on.
I plan I going for a hike this evening to really take it in. I am hoping it doesn't rain. Happy Harvest Moon. 🍃🍂🌾🌻🌕
I know I haven't written in a while. I guess it started to feel a bit trivial. But tonight I just miss you so much and I really needed to talk to you. So here I am.
Not sleeping well tonight has lead me to googling people from our past. I found out that Marco died in 2012, but Flo passed away this past April. She lived to be 97. Can you believe that? Her obituary had photos and she looked good in them. How I remembered her as a child. For some reason I assumed she probably already had passed away and I felt bad for not reaching out.
I left a comment on her obituary thanking her for being a wonderful neighbor and that it really does take a village to raise a child. I thanked her for being a good friend to grandma and said that perhaps they are your neighbors up in heaven.
Whilst thinking of people from the past, I saw that Doc and Marsha are still living. And he is still practicing medicine part time in Florida. I hope they are happy in their later years. Doc is into his 80s, right?
Things with the kids are good. They seem to love their new schools and Ashlie will be starting college soon. You would not believe how big Poppy Marie has gotten.
Tavo's dad has been spending a lot of time with Robbie, but I know he misses you a lot. We all do.
I didn't know who else to tell about Flo and Marco other than you and Lauren...
I was thinking about writing Brian again. Just so I can maybe get a response letter. But I guess that is silly isn't?
Why did you never tell me you played the bongos? Or made leather belts and jewelry to sell in the city? Your life before kids is so interesting to me. I wish I knew more.
I am going to try and sleep now. Good night dad. I love you and I miss you.
I have been told a lot lately that my positivity and outlooks have brought others happiness. My spiritual inner journey is inspiring and that they are learning a lot from me.
I still feel more lost than ever if I am being perfectly honest. Whilst I fully believe what I am saying... I still feel overwhelming amounts of self doubt. And as I walk this path and am sure I know the way, the map feels upside down.
We complain about people who make their lives look perfect on social media. And yet we ignore or even unfriend the ones who are too real and open about their depression, failure and grief.
Just my 3 am thoughts....or rambling.
I will continue to do my best to keep an open and honest dialogue through my depression. This week was unusually tough for me. I do think my continued sharing of my highs as well as the lows have been extremely therapeutic. And if I can continue to help others, maybe I will be able to better help myself along the way.
"We teach best what we most need to learn."
A profound thought... and perhaps why the best advice can be found within the most broken of people.
Last night I dreamed about fishing at the lake with my dad... the lake off Webster ave in Pelham, NY. I often wonder how it looks now and if I am remembering it right and how much has changed over the years. One of my favorite things to do was see how much the trees grew in photos from the year before.
As the dream went on I started to remember my dad's Lung Cancer....I wonder why he isn't sick and why we are back in NY. Then it hits me....
My grandfather walks up to me, and we are both watching my dad fish.
I said to him, "he looks good, huh?"
He smiled at me...
I then said... "I know I'm sleeping."
His face dropped and everything around us went grey. Just a big empty space. My grandfather and I are the only two people there. I then said...
"It's ok. Thank you for letting me come here."
And he hugged me. He hugged me so tight I felt it and I swear it was real. I woke up feeling content.... and calm. Many times I dreamt about my dad or my grandparents it hits me that I am dreaming, but this is the first time I ever told them I knew.
My new sleepless night routine is listening to the old 1950s Scifi radio show X Minus One. I am obsessed. The story telling is great. A lot of it is predictable, but there are some surprises. I was very surprised at the quailty. Sounds as good as it did when it first aired I imagined.
I think it's also a cool way to connect with my dad as this was one of the shows he listened to as a kid. I find a lot of enjoyment in doing the things he loved. I truly believe that our loved ones live on through us. Doing their hobbies, listening to their music, telling their stories.
🌠Simple ways you can put positive energy back into the universe this week. 🌟⚡
• Put a little more love into the world. Some more kindness. Let it be with a friend, loved one, or even a stranger. 💫
• Try your best, and know that your best is ok. 💫
• Forgive people. Forgiving doesn't mean that their actions were ok, or that you have to have some sort of relationship with them again. Do it for yourself. Hate and anger are heavy weights for us to carry around. 💫
• Think as positively as you can. It can be hard, but watch how much it boosts your mood and those around you. 💫
• Eat nutrious food, drink lots of water. 💫
• Let go of unhealthy attachments to people and things. 💫
• Be humble with successes. 💫
• Don’t be reactive to negativity. 💫
If you can't get out the house to see a therapist, or don't have health insurance. I highly recommend www.betterhelp.com
They have a ton of promo codes for free sessions floating around the internet. I am not sponsored by them, so sadly I don't have a promo code... but if you google around, I am sure you can find them. Their website is full of licensed therapists and you can even shop around until you find the one that works best for you.
Video chat, phone call, text / email. As often as you need. Whatever works best for you and your budget.
I personally use them.
((***edit I recently found out they have discounts for low income families. I am not sure how this works, but worth an inquiry. ))
Struggling a bit financially but still need someone to talk to? https://www.7cups.com also has licensed therapists, but also offers a FREE community with tons of resources and communities + FREE peer to peer chat. So if you're looking to talk to someone dealing with something similar, they are a community of really awesome people.
If you need help right now in this very moment, the national suicide hotline is 1-800-273-8255
Or if you are like me, and talking on the phone with strangers gives you a bit of anxiety...
Text 741741 from anywhere in the USA to text with a trained Crisis Counselor.
I also can suggest some spiritual coaches and peer support groups if needed. Just shoot me a message here or on fb.
“Dear Universe, May I now be permitted to clear this space so that my intentions can flow clearly from my heart onto paper. So be it, so it is.”
#NewMoon #MoonRitual #NewMoonManifesting
I don't think anxiety is the same for every person. And I believe there is this huge misconception that one can simply turn it off like a light switch.
Sometimes my anxiety makes me feel like everyone hates me. I mean... everyone. Honestly if you've been in my life the past ten years, I have felt this way about you at some point. Maybe you took too long to answer a text. Maybe you were busy and didn't answer at all. The littlest things can trigger these thoughts. And it's nothing anyone did wrong. Life happens. Rational normal thinking me gets that.. I do. But anxiety me doesn't.
Sometimes at night I stay up until six am thinking about an awkward moment I had with a friend a week ago. Maybe a year ago - or ten? The time and space between an incident really doesn't matter. I am still going to think about it. I am going to worry about it. Despite knowing the person it involved probably doesn't even remember what happened. I still care.
I take everything personally. Even if I don't outwardly show it. I often think that I am being annoying, or that I am talking too much. And I rarely text first because of my overwhelming fears of rejection.
Even though I know all these thoughts are not rational, simply telling me "don't think that way" doesn't work. It does more harm than good because it's just frustrating.
Anxiety becomes so overwhelming for me at times that I feel like I can not breathe. Like a hugs pile of cinderblocks have fallen on to my chest and then someone sat down on them.
Some days everything feels so overwhelming that I can't even get out of bed. I feel physical pain. My body hurts. I feel sick to my stomach. Sometimes I even throw up. I get headaches that bring me to tears.
People with anxiety aren't pretending to have an illness for attention. Most of us don't even talk about it because it's embarrassing and we are misunderstood. It makes us feel out of control with our own lives. With our friends, our spouses, our family, our children.... We don't want this life....
And just because we have irrational fears at times doesn't mean we aren't logical and critical thinkers. As I said above, I know the thoughts or feelings aren't usually true. But that doesn't stop my mind (and body) from going through the motions.
Everyone's levels of anxiety are different. So are our ways of dealing with the stress. A lot of my friends don't even understand the depth of mine because they don't think they have ever seen me in a panic. But at parties, out to lunch or shoots I feel it. It's happened with every person I know at some point or another..I will toon out mid conversation. I sort of stare into space thinking about different things to ground me in that moment.
Lastly, despite all this.... I acknowledge that I have it easy compared to other people. I have found ways to live with my anxiety. Although I still have some really bad days... most are manageable. Not everyone with anxiety is this lucky.
I wish we as a society could look at mental illness differently. I am not asking anyone to treat me with the kid gloves... but to acknowledge that it's real illness like anything physical. And just how you need self care for the flu or a cold... we need self care for the mind.
*** Disclaimer I am not a medical professional and am purely speaking from my own experiences and from things people in my peer support groups have shared. I am not self diagnosed. I am under the care of a medical professional / therapist. Treatment varies for different people. What works for me is talk therapy, kind and understanding friends and family, meditation, grounding exercises, aromatherapy, music, and physical activity like walking or dancing. I am not anti medication. I am not on meds, but believe everyone has to do what is right for them.
I get a little tired of people who assume that just because you have kids, you are automatically completely uncool, and that all your time is spent wiping babies from head to toe, giving spit baths, criticizing their every move, volunteering for PTA, blogging in your spare time, clipping coupons before crock potting a pot roast, ironing the clothes, bleaching the whites, mopping the floors, harvesting your eggs, sewing for your etsy shop, scrapbooking the little things, taking pictures of everything they do, saving for college, reading Dr. Suess, socializing at the bus stop, sweeping the floor, laughing over coffee with your jogging stroller, wearing your birkenstocks and listening to Baby Einstein.
Just because I DO THESE THINGS OCCASIONALLY.
Does not mean for one second that sometimes I don’t just want to be a kick ass girl with streaks in her hair, a ring in her nose, a tattoo on her arm, concert tickets in her purse, vodka in her fridge, a leather mini-skirt in her closet, her best single friends and a standing reservation for Las Vegas once a year with a don’t ask don’t tell policy, and the desire to just once be seen as more than the mother of 5 kids. Sometimes I just want to be seen as a “Maggie”. A “Maggie” with an extremely adorable set of children… (I joke, but sometimes it's hard to over come labels. )
Married + 5 Children
Born in New York
Living in Chicago Land
Italian + Mexican American household
Published Photographer + Artist
Lung Cancer Activist + Advocate
Social Media Enthusiast
Openly in Grief Therapy
Believes in Freedom Of Religion
Studied Animal Science
Backpacking + Hiking
Crystals + Meditation + Yoga
Writing + Scrapbooking + Blogging
Foodie + Cooking + Baking
Tropical Fish Keeping
Coffee + Coffee Shops
Travel + Road trips
Okkervil River + Good indie bands