Engaging Each Day with Action Words

Smell. — How I Poisoned The Ones I Love.

on March 22, 2013

I think I may have been poisoning my family.

A few months ago, I walked into a friend’s house and was immediately, completely mesmerized by the fantastic blueberry cheesecake smell that met me at the door. I got a little bit excited about the treat we would enjoy that evening. Looking around, I didn’t see a cheesecake anywhere in sight and have to admit was a little relieved that I wouldn’t have to fight the temptation of eating this, suddenly realizing, non-existent blueberry cheesecake. I really don’t like cheesecake all that much anyway.

We continued on with our lovely evening but I began to realize how hungry I was. It was because in every darn room there was this amazing, wafting, beautiful, food-like smell that made me feel all relaxed and well, lovely. I finally asked for the secret ingredient and she kindly obliged. There were some lovely plug-in warmers in every room, slowly melting little gobs of wax filled with these delightful, intoxicating smells. Oh my. I must have that.

So, I did.  I bought some. I bought more. I bought different flavors and even things for my kiddos.

And my house started to smell like the beach. I walked through the door after a busy day at work, into a place that reminded me of sand and surf and sunshine. It was a beautiful thing. Sometimes it would be vanilla-y or caramel-y or all sorts of scents of lovely. I bragged about it to friends. I posted on Facebook about how it covered up the smell of kale in my house after making a huge batch of chips.

And then.

Remember I told you about my longtime friend of a friend of a friend who was diagnosed with cancer? Well during this same time, while this friend of a friend of a friend was in the middle of chemotherapy treatments, I became very aware of some things. I was in the bathroom, blow drying my hair, (which by the way, how many times do I share on here that I had some kind of revelation, while I am in the bathroom, blow drying my hair?…I not-so-secretly think my hair dryer is magical…but I digress) when I heard my daughter coughing. I asked if she was ok and she said yes. But then I realized that X had a bad cough, too.

Why do they both have such bad coughs?

Then came the freak out. It wasn’t completely crazy at first. There was a calm crazy that started as I picked up my phone and started searching for what was IN the little gobs of wax that were making my house smell so heavenly.

Google: The cause of many a freak out over the years.

What I found was that I couldn’t rule out the fact that the reason my kiddos were coughing was so that my house could smell like the beach. The fragrances are full of chemicals. There is debate about whether those get released into the air, but I’m betting they do. I taught 5th grade. I know that when you heat water, the molecules move around faster and it changes to gas and the gas is released into the air around it. Duh.

Then I read that the little gobs of wax had a petroleum base. Petroleum. The gas I put in my car is made from petroleum.

Cue the FREAK OUT.

I really did run through the house, in tears by this point, turning off all of the plug in warmers and then ran back through ripping them out of the outlets. My hands were covered in warm, melted wax that sloshed out as I carried each one to the garbage can, pouring out the gooeyness.

Felix stood by, just watching. Probably a little afraid to get too close for fear of being burned by the crazy lady carrying hot wax around the house. That would be a different 50 shades book, just saying’.

It took a while, but I finally came around to discussing this with him. We agreed that if we can’t be sure that these are not hurting our kiddos and our health, then there is no need for our house to smell like the beach. We will open our windows more. Our house will smell like the mountains. And sometimes it will smell like skunks. Because, well, skunks came around at night and such. Nature happens.


Here’s the thing. I know a lot of folks who are walking around, feeling miserable all of the time. They ‘eeyore’ about their lives, (I just turned Eeyore into a verb…YES! she said pumping her fist in the air!)…suffering from headaches and sinus infections and not sleeping and aches and pains. They make doctor appointments while downing their 3rd Mountain Dew of the morning after eating fast food for breakfast.

It is time to take a look around. What is making us sick? I know it is not as simple as this. People get sick. There are germs, there are real illnesses and disease that are just going to happen, because that is how things work within our bodies. We can’t stop everything. But. Our world is full of toxins. I think I can say that with a fair degree of confidence even without being a doctor or researcher.

Our world is full of toxins. I just said it again. And if we can reduce the toxins that we add to it, by just a little bit, we may be just a little bit better off. If nothing else, we need to start paying attention. If we are going to try to EAT WELL and PLAY MORE, we also need to AVOID POISONS as much as possible.

In the meantime, I still have the plug-in warmers because they are pretty and make for great night lights around the house. Now, instead, there are lovely non-toxic, all natural, made by someone I know, soy-based (not gas-based) wax tarts making my house smell all vanilla-y. (Check them out on facebook: Green Oaks Apothecary and get your own.


5 responses to “Smell. — How I Poisoned The Ones I Love.

  1. rarasaur says:

    I use the soy-based wax tarts too! The ingredients on the store bought ones make me cringe. 🙂 Good call on tossing them out!!

    • MommyVerbs says:

      Well…I’m just in a place where, if it makes me nervous, I’m just not going to use it. I’m sure there are some that think I’m nuts. But…I can’t ignore the signs. Thanks for being in my corner! I love that you are here! 🙂

  2. Beth Yopp says:

    Woohoo! You are so right. Thanks for giving props to Green Oaks. You really know how to make others think.

  3. Sadly, the only stinky things in my house…are my men! “Pretty” smells seem to stuff them up. Even pretty smells like my favourite vanilla handcream that I used at work…only to have Hubby literally hours later comment on my stinky hands, as he sneezed and wiped his nose…well, you get the point! sigh…

  4. This was totally good information to know. Thank you!

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