I hate ticks. Hate may be an understatement. Maybe loathe...yes, I think that is a good description too. I hate & loathe ticks. It's definitely a phobia.
To give you an idea of the intensity of my tick phobia, I'll share an experience I had some years ago. There was a time when I saw a tick on my shoe when I was in my car. I was in the driver's seat - driving on a road. I slammed on the brakes, stopped the car and jumped out. I got rid of the tick by stamping my foot until it fell off. Did I mention I stopped in the middle of the road? Fortunately, the road wasn't a busy one.
When I've had traumatic tick experiences (a tick is actually on my skin), it's my husband's job to rescue me by:
- Calmly wait until I stop screaming.
- Bring me a glass of wine.
- Bring me another glass of wine.
- Wait for me to be still for at least 1 minute.
- Remove the tick before I start hyperventilating.
Yes, it's that bad.
We had massive bushes surrounding our house that we decided to have removed. We wanted to have a clean landscaping slate on which to be creative.
It was a hot day and I was raking leaves and pulling up remaining roots from an area that used to contain bushes. I was pretty impressed with myself and all that I was accomplishing. I was roasting, even though I was wearing shorts and a t-shirt. After about an hour and a half, I decided that I was going to spray remaining weeds and call it a day.
After I finished, I walked into the house thinking about really cold sparkling water. It was then that the horror began. I felt something on my leg. I looked down to see a tick! It was on my leg! I had totally forgotten to spray on repellent! I was wearing gardening gloves, so I tried removing it. The thing was actually biting me. I couldn't get it off!
I was home alone. This was a nightmare come true.
I immediately started screaming at the tick, telling it that it had no right to be on my leg and it needed to leave - NOW! The tick was either deaf or it didn't care if I was screaming at it.
I tried to have an out of body experience, so I could remove myself from the tick, but no luck with that idea. I was in a total state of panic. I was in tick hell with no rescue in sight.
What could I do????
I took a deep breath. I was standing in my kitchen. In front of me, on the counter was a case of essential oils.
I took another deep breath. I am a certified aromatherapist, I told myself. I can solve this problem!
I opened the case. In front of me were 70 bottles. What should I do? Is there an oil that can help me?
I thought about oils that repeled insects. But this was no insect, this was a tick! A monster that gave me nightmares.
Another deep breath. I reached into the case and took out my bottle of cedarwood. I didn't to use an oil that could cause a burning sensation on my skin, although I did want the tick to feel like it was burning in hell. In my mind, I thought about cautions associated with cedarwood essential oil...I couldn't think of any.
What were the reported properties for this oil?
Antifungal. Nice, but not needed.
Antiseptic. That's a good one. I may need first aid.
Aphrodisiac. Ummmm no.
Anti-inflammatory. I might need that. Who knows what this thing is doing to my leg!
Astringent, Diuretic, Expectorant , Regenerative. No - nothing there.
Sedating. I need that that one for sure! I'm in a full blown panic attack.
Encourages a restful night’s sleep. Maybe later.
Antispasmodic. Yes, I'm totally spasing out.
Circulatory stimulant. My heart rate has to be up around 180 BPD. I sure don't need that.
Antirheumatic, Calms cough, Reduces the appearance of blemishes , Slows hair loss. No, none of them.
Stress management. I totally need that!
Grounding, Reduces anxiety, Fear, and Insecurity. I could use help for all of those.
I couldn't think of any properties that would annihilate this tick!
Enough analysis. I needed to something.
I opened the bottle of cedarwood essential oil and put about 10 drops of oil directly on the tick. I watched the tick. Five whole seconds had passed and it wasn't doing anything! I added 10 more drops. Then it happened - the tick started to move. Then it backed out and tried to get away. I took a paper towel and pinched the horrible creature. I turned on the faucet in the sink and rinsed that tick right down the drain.
This was the very first time I rescued myself from a tick. It was an empowering moment. Being an aromatherapist is a little like having super powers!