When I was first enraptured by the calling to learn and use Flower Essences, I could not have known that this would lead me to the flourishing of my innermost Purpose and the finding of my close Soul Family. At the time, this approach was not even known as an existing healing modality, and even less as a career in the country where I lived, but all of this was about to change in the years that followed.
Here, I share with you some crucial pieces of a journey that is mine, and that has touched and changed the lives of many others, in the hope that this inspires and reassures you: the calling of the flowers is a very legitimate one, and it can take you into a meaningful and inspiring life of service. I invite you to read about my journey as an Archetypal story that is also your own!
I often say that the Path of the Flowers chose me, and not the other way around. For a number of years after having my children, I felt strongly called to learn everything I could about plants, including their herbal qualities. I read books, I found mentors, I was totally taken by it.
But I was particularly fascinated by flowers, and in fact, I started chasing them everywhere. Or maybe it was the flowers that were coming my way so we could meet. In fact, I remember celebrating my 40th birthday with an all flower theme, an outdoor party with a range of flowery tablecloths and a profusion of unique flower arrangements placed all around the house.
I also remember traveling for my previous business (a design business, not related), taking my good camera equipment and photographing only gardens and flowers wherever I went. I was truly under their spell!
It was in one of these travels that I was gifted with a copy of Dr Bach’s Heal Thyself, and right after I found more literature, including an early version of the Flower Essence Repertory.
Things moved fast: I was determined to own my first it of Bach essences, but I lived in Brazil, so I had to wait for an international trip of my own, or for someone who could bring me a kit from abroad.
I soon received and started using my own flower essences kit
As it turns out, this was meant to happen very quickly; soon I started using my first flower essences. Not too long after, I was able to have another friend bring me my first full FES Professional Kit, at the time contained in a large and fascinating wide box with all the beautiful vials of essences in it.
Important to note here, is the fact that all of this happened in parallel with my fascination to learn everything I could about the Soul Journey.
During this time, I was not only reading everything I could about the multidimensional aspect of our Souls, but I was actively volunteering as a translator for teachers who guided us through deep spiritual inner work, self-awareness, meditation and conscious evolution.
In parallel, a deep dive in learning about the Soul Journey
The segments on the Soul Journey were the ones that fascinated me the most: I felt like a kid wanting to hear (and speak out as a translator) the same metaphors and images over and over again. I was completely enthralled by that understanding, and moved by the sparkle or the tears of recognition in people’s eyes when they heard the truth about who they truly are, their essential Star Self.
And so it was that, from the early beginnings of my use of the essences, I was diving deep into a self-awareness and self-healing journey of my own.
Now I had the essences, and I first used them with myself. But I was living surrounded by many people I loved, and it was natural to also give essences to family and employees (I owned a business) if that could bring relief, balance and hope.
I started giving essences to friends, family, employees
At the time, Brazil was going through major economic challenges; life was changing for everyone and people were hurting.
Before too long, I started giving essences to some friends, and as people heard about their results, they wanted them, too. And also, before too long, my first actual clients, people I had not met before, started coming to me.
This all happened within a short span of time; as I look back, it seems there was true urgency for the unfoldment of my involvement with this path.
A connection was established between me and Richard Katz and Patricia Kaminski and I had the joy of, soon after, meeting them in person at the 2nd FE Conference in Canada in June 1991.
Only weeks after, I was back in North America, this time directly at the gardens of Terra Flora for the Practitioner Training.
This is when it all came alive and it all came together for me as never before: the Path of the Soul and the Living language of the Flowers!
During the two years that preceded my official training as a Practitioner, I was already so taken by this path (or had been taken into it) that I was not only actively working with the essences, giving it to people and spreading the word, but I was also holding study groups with colleagues and even teaching a few beginner classes on the basic use of the Bach Remedies.
But the biggest change in how I would come to understand and practice this work had finally come: I was having the direct experience of learning with the plants and connecting with their living Archetypes.
It all came alive: finally learning amidst the plants
During those unforgettable days, between daily classes at the gardens, classroom sessions and a few visits to the high mountains, Patricia and Richard led us through our first steps in learning the science and study of Living Plant Archetypes revealed through the many stages of their manifestation. In this linked article on the first making of the Spreading Phlox essence, I share more on that special encounter of people from different countries who became significant contributors to flower essence work.
Resonating with Patricia and Richard’s embodied understanding, we established our own connection with these living plant beings and their Archetypal fields of information. Now, we could clearly make the correlations between these Archetypal qualities and gestures, and the issues, journeys and initiations experienced by our very own Souls.
The knowledge I had gathered from books, the experience I already had of applying the essences, the observation of the human Soul Journey in its many passages was what I had brought with me. As I walked the garden paths and trails and learned more about each plant, I began embodying a living knowing of the Archetypal gestures and signature of each plant.
In the gardens, it all came alive and it was all coming together
On this I want to also say that this is a never ending journey, that continues to this day, three decades after: there is always more to observe, listen, discover and learn!
A major life change happened right after that crucial time: I closed my former business and started a new business, this time fully dedicated to the flowers.
In this first format my life gained, for the 22 years that followed I not only had a very busy full time practice seeing clients in person for the essences, but I also became a distributor of the FES essences and of a few other carefully chosen lines, with a business partner and a small staff.
In Brazil, interest on Flower Essences was growing exponentially
Around that time, a real explosion of interest in flower essences was happening in Brazil. While in many other countries the interest in the essences had been localized and specific, in Brazil at that time, the interest on flower essences spread like quick fire!
In 1989, I spoke on a panel at a Conference on Bach Flower Essences that had more than a 1200 participants. Over a period of perhaps 4 years, I was constantly interviewed for articles in the media on how flower essences could help people. Interviews were published in magazines, newspapers, and on TV: the public was eager to know about the essences. Flower Essences were out in the mainstream news!
It was clear to me that this interest called for further education, for a deepening of the knowledge of the essences and their application. The public wanted more and more and we were willing to meet their needs.
In response to this demand, my business partners and I organized and promoted a succession of high quality classes with the original researchers of the essences, and these classes gathered very large groups.
During these many years, due to my ease with the language, I was the one who communicated with the teachers abroad, inviting them to travel to Brazil to teach increasingly more advanced aspects of this work. In our communications, topics were chosen that would satisfy the hunger for knowledge, meeting the needs of the many passionate students.
The years I spent translating books, class materials and brochures for each one of these flower essence lines allowed me to grow an exceptional intimacy with all this information and knowledge.
Being the consecutive translator of all of these classes, allowed me to integrate and come to embody the understanding of each one of the essences that we were using.
We even organized and took groups of students to California, Alaska, British Columbia and Australia for translated courses, so we could all learn about these plants in the ecosystems where they grow. I was part of the process of organizing these programs and I was always the one translating these events, continuing to learn more every single day.
You may think this is not reasonable, as in truth it was too much, but this was indeed the reality of my life during those years between 1991 and 2001. I don’t know how I did it and survived it, but I did, probably thanks to the essences and the fact that this was a true and urgent calling for service.
Yes, I did have a full time private practice all along, while I also played a major role in establishing what I now see as the basis of a high quality education on Flower Essence Therapy in Brazil.
This really helped establish Flower Essence Therapy as a credible modality in Brazil, a truly respected healing approach that continues to grow.
Trust and Credibility were fundamental for the role I played
Trust has been a fundamental part of this: having had two previous careers in which I became known for my integrity, someone who is inspiring and reliable, people would come to what I was doing next based on trust, even though flower essences were very new to them. In other words, the credibility that I had built as a very responsible and skilled professional photographer for 13 years, and subsequently as the owner of a clothes designing business that many people loved, brought people to me through this special connection based on TRUST. I so often heard people say: “I don’t know what this is all about, but I trust you, so here I am.”
On what concerns my private practice, this level of trust has allowed people to open up sharing their most personal stories and vulnerable inner places. And all along, it has been within this space of trust that they have felt supported and inspired to keep coming back.
The continuity that I have seen unfolding throughout my 30 years of practice has been remarkable: many individuals have endowed me with a level of trust that allowed me to witness their journeys through decades.
The healing transformation, the levels of integration and empowerment I have seen and continue to see to this day, always humbles and touches me deeply. I feel truly honored to serve in this way, knowing this work is much bigger than my earthly human self: in truth, I am serving as a translator that helps convert their needs and the transformation they are ready for, into combinations of essences and words of encouragement for their journey.
Practitioner of Practitioners, Mentor and Guide
As a result of these growing connections based on trust, several practitioners chose to work with me for significant periods of time. As we worked together, their consultations were on one level focused on their journey, and on another level they were a conversation on the processes of Flower Essence Therapy. I continue to offer these now, and I call them Consultations with a Mentoring Perspective.
Watching the flourishing of a viable and respected Profession
It is from this level of engagement and dedication that during these first two decades I watched the flourishing of Flower Essence Therapy in Brazil, with numerous individuals actively working and sharing the blessings of the flowers with the many. In Brazil, Flower Essence therapy had become a respected modality and a viable profession!
In the years that followed, many qualified individuals got involved in the processes of teaching and of legitimizing Flower Essence Therapy as a Practice: we developed a whole collective of highly qualified and mature teachers and this work has only continued and multiplied since then.
Masters Degree University programs offering specialization in Flower Essence Therapy were offered in different States; teaching programs flourished throughout the country, all of this culminating with Flower Essence Therapy being approved as one of the complementary modalities to be offered through public health programs (along with Acupuncture, Reiki and a number of other complementary healing practices).
The many opportunities we had to bring people together when we organized courses has been very special: people felt they were meeting their “tribe” and were nourishing their souls through each one of these encounters. We developed a countrywide community.
Yearning for Personal Life, I had a strong sense that I would be living in another hemisphere
After 10 years of very intensive service to Flower Essence Therapy in Brazil and building bridges between Brazilians and teachers, places and essences from around the world, my soul and my body were yearning for personal life and I strongly felt I was meant to meet a partner from another country.
From childhood, I had a lifelong yearning to live in a more Northern climate. Plants from other climates had been calling me all along, but I also had that strong feeling that the partner I was going to meet was not from Brazil.
Eventually, all of this was meant to manifest through a crucial encounter: in 1999 I met Stephen, an American who was, at the time, living in California. In 2001, we got married and I established my main residence in the US.
From that time, for another 15 years I lived between two hemispheres: I continued my practice in Brazil and would travel there 4 times a year. Each time I went, year after year, around 100 clients lined up to see me in person, and our work continued with the same level of richness and depth.
Holding many journeys in my memory and heart
In between travels, during the time I spent back home in California, I made a conscious choice to not recreate the same full time practice. I wanted to l have more time with my husband when home, and we both enjoyed walking in Nature and exploring the beautiful areas in California.
While at home I opened my practice for a limited number of individuals, but I made no moves to expand it. I wanted to take time to learn and master digital and design technologies, and improve my experience as a flower photographer. My first career of 13 years had been as a photographer, and photography had just gone digital; there was so much to learn to be able to master that transition.
There was a stronger inner force driving this: something not yet in existence wanted to come into manifestation through me, that I felt would involve visuals and digital skills, combined with my fine connection with the plants. Following this still had unclear vision, but I kept learning everything I could related to building websites, layered digital image editing, storytelling for compelling presentations and more. And I would apply these skills to create lectures and classes that I presented from time to time here or in Brazil, while I continued this life between two Hemispheres.
It had been my conscious choice to continue living these two lives and I did it for 15 years, but eventually this lifestyle was meant to come to an end.
A major relocation of my practice became inevitable
Personal and family circumstances in Brazil, my decision to leave the business I had founded 22 years earlier, and ultimately my husband here facing a life threatening illness, all of these contributed to a radical transition.
My practice needed to be fully relocated to where I live and I was called to shift my whole connection to my work in Brazil.
To describe the major change that my work and practice has had to go through, I often compare it to a mature tree that has had to be transplanted.
When a large well-formed tree needs to be relocated, the root ball has to be heavily pruned, conserving only its core and vital structure, and the upper part, leaves and branches, all need to be radically pruned as well.
The magnitude of this did not make me waver: I was used to radical changes in life and business. Earlier on, I had recreated and reinvented my career twice, and I knew it could and would be done. In practice, it has taken longer than I would have wished, but I can say the first part of this relocation is done!
My Practice was like a mature tree needing to be relocated
My practice, as a tree taken to its new location and ecosystem, has taken time to reestablish itself. As a consequence of so much traveling, as a practitioner I had mainly focused on my audience in Brazil. Where I lived, I was still relatively new to the communities.
Most of my Brazilian clients really liked seeing me in person and many resisted the long distance format. With the economy still under a major downturn and at a very unfavorable exchange rate, I knew I should not even try to call anyone in unless they wanted me. In some ways I can say that much of the work I had needed to do there was done, but I would continue staying connected with my most dedicated long term clients, wherever they were.
I felt there were others who needed me, but I was yet to encounter the individuals I was meant to work with for the years to come. This would take some time: the roots of my practice needed to get settled and established, the tree needed to acclimate and adapt to the new territory.
Finally settled, still in California, having gathered all the skills I acquired during my recent years of mastering these technical tools, I started setting up my new online based work with full focus in late 2016 into 2017.
The vision for Essence Circles was shown to me with clarity
At the time, the vision for Essence Mentoring and Essence Circles emerged with clarity: it was very clear that I was being called to do online work with Soul and Beauty. I was ready to respond to the calling, and knew what it looked like as it began!
The mature tree (my practice) is now well relocated and established
Enough time has elapsed since then. In metaphorical terms I can describe the mature tree of my practice as being well settled in its new ecosystem.
In the midst of the Pandemic in July 2020, its roots are well established, while still growing in outreach. Its branches and presence flourishing and producing. There is enough fruit and flowers for the ones who feel called to come and more will be coming in upcoming harvests.
Having gone through these recent years of rebuilding my business, now mastering its efficiency on a fully online format, I have a good handle on all the pieces involved in the many different formats that a Flower Essence Therapy practice can take. And I am able to meet my clients and students wherever they are. I use database systems, scheduling systems, and I have focused on forms of authentic and generous ways of sharing our knowledge, inspiring and educating people about what we do through authentic heart based marketing.
My intention is to continue to serve as a Practitioner and Educator
As I meet each one of you at this time, I am a living archive of cases, journeys and the vision of what is possible as we take this work to its depths.
There is much that I can offer to serve Flower Essence Therapy, both in the understanding of the work we do, as well as the setting up of our practices in very practical ways.
Being a Practitioner myself has always been my passion. The love and the interest I have for this work is still present at every session. I can say I don’t think I will ever not want to offer individual sessions. So I continue to be available as a Practitioner.
Mentoring offerings are now taking new formats
Mentoring has been taking new formats: early this year of 2020 I launched the first Mentoring group within a time frame of 3 months and this was deeply moving and inspiring for all the participants. More of these will be launched.
For the near future, I am preparing a longer training in which I will offer the understanding that I gained in helping people transform their core wounds and patterns. In this, flower essences play a major part, and there are some related areas of study that support the processes.
Yes, our individual inner work is central to all we do, but I also feel that we, as a community, have an important calling at this time.
Flower Essence Practitioners as educators on listening
While each practitioner will always have their own unique style of work, as this is a science and also a healing art, as a community I feel we share a common goal that unites us all and calls us all to step forth in service.
The world is going through radical changes and, throughout the world, many more individuals are feeling called to listen. This listening also involves listening to Nature and to their innermost Soul messages.
As Flower Essence Practitioners, the work we do with ourselves and the processes through which we lead our clients, ultimately brings us all closer to finer levels of awareness of our inter-dimensionality and our interconnection.
We are all here to evolve as Souls while co-creating with Nature, within the embrace of the living being of Earth.
As Flower Essence Practitioners, what is our part to play in the deepening of this awareness, so that, as humanity, we can move into a healthier integration?
How can we best serve?
Online work with Soul
It is with our greater role in mind and heart that I invite you to gather as community in the online formats that I have been offering, using the skills I acquired while preparing for this, while still not knowing what was to come.
Since September 2016, I have been offering free monthly gatherings, that I call Open Circles, and in each encounter we, as a group, connect with one Plant Archetype. These are Soul Nurturing experiences that bring us together as community.