As our cycles wax and wane with the phases of the moon, the wise witch begins to see her moontime (aka menstruation) as a gift and not a curse. This is a time to make like our uterus and purge, to shed what no longer serves us, to make room for new, higher vibes. If you wish to be a magical she-beast, an ambassador of the divine feminine, a healing balm on this wounded planet, mother earth has got your back. She has plant allies that not only soothe physical discomfort but can also help bring your intentions into light and organize your magic.
Below are a few of my favourite herbs that vibe well with a lady’s moontime and happen to make delicious teas. Making time for even the smallest ritual can help us to strengthen our magic and step into our power, so create a small tea ceremony that fits into your day. This is an opportunity to connect the within to the without, through the herbs, their allies and your awareness of them.
Focus on what you are feeling, choose an herb that appeals to you. Choose a few key words that stand out to you from their descriptions and repeat them like a mantra as you prepare your tea and then drink it. If you live in an area where you can grow or pick these common herbs, all the better. Use organic herbs if you can and compost them if at all possible. As Above So Below!
Energetics: Divine feminine, warmth, poise, receptivity.
Planet: Venus, planet of beauty and harmony.
Tarot Card: The Empress, Queen of earthly life who reminds us to connect to the divine powers within and without. Connecting with raspberry leaf will allow us to be more nurturing to ourselves, being more receptive to our intuitive inner voice.
Apothecary: Raspberry leaf is used to regulate the menstrual cycle as well as to help prepare the womb for pregnancy. Well known to ease PMS and to alleviate cramping. Drink as a tea throughout your cycle to reduce symptoms. Used externally, raspberry leaf is an excellent treatment for breakouts. Use the spent leaves from your tea and apply directly to the area (that’s called a poultice!) for as long as you can, until the plant matter dries out.
How to: Use about 1 tsp per 1 cup of freshly boiled water. Allow to steep for at least 5 minutes. Alternatively, make a pot before bed and allow it to steep overnight, ideally near a window where the moonlight will touch it, then drink in the morning. Thank the nurturing raspberry spirits as you enjoy your tea.
Energetics: The mothering herb, nurturing, strength, protective.
Planet: Mars, planet of strength and vitality.
Tarot Card: Queen of Pentacles. The queen knows how to nurture herself and others. She is the Earth mother personified, grounded and focused, able to know when to hold them and when to fold them.
Apothecary: Nettles are incredibly nutrient rich, increasing energy by nourishing the adrenals. They are adaptogenic, (this means they enhance the body’s natural response to physical and emotional stress) and have traditionally been used as a spring tonic. It is a slow-acting nutritive herb that gently cleanses the body of metabolic wastes. They have a gentle, stimulating effect on the lymphatic system, are balancing to the metabolism and strengthening to the entire system as they are very high in iron, vitamins and minerals.
How to: Make an overnight brew (as described above) and drink daily, connecting to the nourishing nettle energies. The green, earthy flavour will remind you to dig your roots into the earth, growing stronger and more powerful, standing your ground.
Energetics: Clarity, positivity, inner peace.
Planet: Sun, star of passion, creativity and life force.
Tarot Card: Ace of swords: The expansion of thought and illumination. This card urges us to be clear in our thoughts in order to affirm our inner truths. The two edges of the sword remind us that we should be careful to remain unbiased and be accepting of ourselves, our limitations and our creativity’s ebbs and flows.
Apothecary: Anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic, chamomile can be very helpful for women with digestive constipation contributing to pain. A nervine and mild sedative, it may help to reduce stress and relax the nervous system, making it useful when feeling menstrual cramping accompanied by anxiety and irritability.
How to: Steep the flowers in boiled water for 10 minutes, as often as you like. As you drink, focus on clearing your mind of noise, filling the space with good vibes, allowing your body time to rest and recharge.
Note: You can make a moontime tea blend, using equal parts of these three herbal allies and drink any time during your cycle. I usually brew an overnight tea to reap the most nutrients and get the most out of the herbs. Enjoy!
Illustrations by Cate Currie