• Clare Gardner Nieto

Case Study: The Unconditional Love & Support of Pine

Client Blog from a 2018 Case Study

Photo by Brett Sayles from Pexels

Case Study Overview

Case studies allow me to expand my knowledge of remedies old and new, try out new processes in clinic, and offer a package of sessions at a discounted rate to those who might not otherwise be able to afford it. In return, my case study clients provide me with insight into their growth throughout the sessions and write a blog about their own experiences with the remedies. If you are interested in collaborating with me on a case study, please contact me.


The Unconditional Love & Support of Pine // by Case Study Client #002

Asked about my experiences doing flower essence therapy, I could share dozens of memorable, remarkable, even magical stories and insights that arose during the months I worked with Clare. I’ll stick to one from the very last flower essence formula Clare prepared for me. I received this mixture during a time of great emotional and energetic upheaval in my life, and it contained three flower essences: Peppermint, Vervain, and Pine. As usual, Clare described the qualities of each flower essence, and I found time to read a little more about Peppermint and Vervain the day of my appointment. Pine, for some inexplicable reason, I forgot about. 


Two days into my new regimen, I started an intensive weekend course for my masters program in Integrative Health Coaching. I was the first student in our class that day assigned to coach a volunteer in front of the entire class and our instructors. The closer the weekend got, the less excited and more nauseatingly nervous I became. Facing the prospect of being on the spot and really wanting to do well, countless insecurities emerged for me around competence, self worth, feeling like a fraud…all swirling in a stew of high-level physiological anxiety. 


That first morning of class, as I worked to find a sense of calm and equilibrium, I identified that my unhelpful “inner critic” voice—which I've struggled with for much of my life—was rampaging, and had hijacked the driver's seat of my consciousness.

In what seemed a moment of serendipity, one of my instructors posed an insightful question: “what is the opposite of your unhelpful inner critic?”

I paused, startled by the simple poignancy of this question. My mind got to work trying to conjure a “helpful inner critic” with little success, and I then let the question go.  Later, in the minutes leading up to my coaching session, I implemented several practices I've learned over the years to soothe my body and mind when this deep, old, relentless anxiety takes hold. During quiet breathing, a decisive whisper arose in me: the opposite of my inner critic is simply unconditional love and support.  I swiftly felt my body, my mind, and my entire being awash with a sense of unconditional love and support from the universe itself, along with all those spirits, living and passed, who love me exactly as I am. I felt it deeply: “I am unconditionally loved and supported.” A new sense of peace filled me with ease. 


Moments later, while coaching in front of the group, I experienced something entirely new to me. I felt my familiar anxiety and self-criticism alongside a greater, deeper sense awareness that I am always unconditionally loved and supported.

It was clear to me that no fumble or fuck up, however large or small, could ever separate me from this tremendous love. 

Indeed, I messed up a few times, forgot, lost my sense of presence, and said things sounded dumb to me. And I felt held, peace permeating my entire experience. I was almost overwhelmed by this very new and profound sense relief around what has felt like an intractable problem for much of my life. Later that evening, it occurred to me to read about my new flower essences one more time. I was moved, incredulous when I searched online and read about the third flower essence, the forgotten Pine:


“Bach’s Pine flower essence, for that voice in your head….It is common for us to carry voices from the past with us, sadly though, these voices are often unsupportive. Pine flower essence will help to free us from these vestiges of chastising outdated pieces of the past….The use of pine flower essence is for the voice of guilt or shame that echoes in your consciousness. This internalized voice that criticizes, berates and is generally unsupportive to you living a free and happy life is a bane to your self confidence and self worth….Pine flower essence easily puts an end to this type of corrosive self talk. Part of its action is to foster self forgiveness and self acceptance. If you are looking to quiet the inner critic look no further than Bach’s Pine flower essence.” (Mark D’Aquila,https://www.essencealchemy.com)


Or stated more simply:

“Affirming, ‘I love myself, just as I am’…is the essence of Pine.” (Beth Terrence,www.bethterrence.com)


Pine taught me so much. Along with Vervain and Peppermint, it brought me back to myself, my true nature, and a sense of belonging and acceptance in the great order of things. Pine also served as a stunning reminder of the quiet power of plants and their essences to restore balance, usher out what is no longer necessary, and enable life-affirming transformation. 


Photo by Rudolf Jakkel from Pexels

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