Anita and Jessica counting the components in a GC/MS Report

 

This morning I’m experiencing that peculiar combination of exhilaration and fatigue.

I’ve just spent five days in the classroom teaching Week #1 of the  Aromatherapy Certification Program.

Of the four live classes I currently offer at the Aromatic Wisdom Institute, this program requires the most from the student, and from me.

But the rewards for both of us are so worth it!

Watching them Grow
In the first five days of the program, I see ACP students evolve from making that first shaky blend to confidentally creating a formula based on chemical components of essential oils!  I watch as they begin with no understanding of plant taxonomy to being able to correctly tell me the Latin binomial of a specific essential oil or explain the difference between two oil chemotypes!   And oh! how their faces light when they smell their first vibrant, organic essential oil.

Deer-in-the-Headlights
One of my favorite parts of teaching this program is seeing their deer-in-the-headlight eyes as I draw that first molecule on the board (“Oh Lord, is she gonna make us draw those things?”).

No I’m not mean, I just like it because I know that as alien as that first introduction to essential oil chemistry is, in one month their lack of knowledge will be transformed and they will have an understand of four chemical families, and in two months, ten chemical families!  They will be able to look at a GC/MS sheet of an essential oil and tell me something about that oil just based on the constituents listed on the sheet!

It is SO exciting to witness their growth!

 

Their Commitment = My Respect
I am moved by the commitment my students make to themselves and their future by coming to this class.  They take time away from family and work to become Certified Aromatherapists.  Many use vacation time and travel long distances to attend the school.

R-E-S-P-E-C-T  Aretha had it right.  I sure do respect my students.

And as much as I’d like to say, “Hey, look what I did!” when they graduate, I cannot.

Oh nay NAY!

These remarkable students step into the classroom already equipped with the most essential of tools:  curiosity, creativity, passion, optimism and a desire to help others.

All I do is give them new skills and help guide them along their pre-destined paths.

 

You call this Work?
It doesn’t matter how many students I have, there is a lot of preparation on my end for the Aromatherapy Certification Program.  Whether I have two (as in this current class) or twenty, I take the same care in preparing each 300-page manual,  purchasing lots of oils, butters, hydrosols and more plus bottles, jars and other containers for their blending exercises.  I try to keep current with changes in the industry and essential oil research.

When I’m teaching, I get up extra early to check notes, prepare snacks, print out anything relevant that came up from class the day before and make sure I have everything all ready for the day ahead.  This part of teaching – the morning prep- is quiet and reflective and sets my tone for the day.  Then I teach from 9:30 – 5:30, sometimes staying an hour or so after the students have gone home.

Some would call this work, but truly, it is a labor of love and all done with joy and passion and the reward of helping provide my students with an educational experience that I believe will change their lives.  I know it has changed mine.

What a privilege it is to be an Aromatherapy Educator!

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