Native Botanicals was created by the lovely Nichole Wilkinson in January 2018. Nichole is one of the women who have played an active role in our community by not only being incredibly inspiring and supportive to other women (especially during Coffee + Conversation), but who is a perfect example of someone who took the leap of faith!
Here is her story:
I came into Hatched Collective in November 2017, attending a Coffee and Conversation meeting to network my legal business. Little did I know that this group of women would pull out of me my soul’s true purpose and passion in a few short months…
After going monthly to the Hatched Collective Coffee and Conversation meetings, I attended the Hatched Retreat in January 2018. It was very uncomfortable and difficult for me to leave my son and husband but well worth it! I taught a few of the women how to make botanical wall hangings that I had been making for years. I would collect plants and sticks on my hikes and nature adventures and would make art with them. Over the years I had friends ask for custom ones or if they could buy them from me. I usually would just give them away. At the Retreat we would laugh and say this was my “side business”, that I was going to start a business called “Thrive Botanicals” and it seemed quite hilarious at the time because it was SO outside of the scope of what I was “professionally” trained to do. You see, I had been brought up to believe that I must be “someone” in this world…not someone to make a difference but someone that made a lot of money and was held in high esteem. I embarked on my journey into adulthood pursuing a career in the legal field. I am a paralegal by trade, have been for the past 17 years, and now own a legal document preparation company. While the flexibility of being self-employed allowed me some freedom, I felt that something was lacking…that something would become clear over the next few years as there was an emptiness growing that led me to jeopardizing my sobriety.
I had originally stopped drinking in 2001. I had a brief relapse in 2008. I had my son via c-section with no pain medication in 2010, as I was very concerned about maintaining my sobriety. From 2011-2015, I had a series of three surgeries. As a result, I had pain medication in my medicine cabinet. I had no desire to abuse it or use it outside of how it was prescribed over the years.
But in 2016, I found myself boarding a plane for a family vacation and taking a few of the pain pills to relieve the anxiety of flying. It was in that moment my life was about to take a drastic change. I had officially “relapsed”. I had used a substance to alter the way I wanted to feel and had been doing it consistently for about a year. It wasn’t until I looked back and realized that the flight was a blur and I was taking pills to deal with life that I realized how quickly this could spin out.
After much contemplation, I reset my sobriety date to August 12, 2016. I dived back in to creating a life that would support my sobriety, recovery, healing, and spirituality. Through this I would become primed to receive the gift that the women at Hatched Collective pulled out of me in January 2018.
I opened Native Botanicals on January 23, 2018 and haven’t looked back! It’s only been 5 short months but I’m off and running. I love to connect with other women, providing them with a safe and sacred place to share their stories, encourage them, show them how to connect with nature, share my love for nature and my soul’s true purpose with them, and create nurturing retreats that all can attend. I am so grateful for the community of women that have supported me through this. I am so excited to see what the future holds and would have never thought I would be where I am today!