Ashlyn Hess has been filled from head to toe with the beauty of our earth

No one has ever had such a magnetic pull to our earth like freshman Ashlyn Hess.

She finds herself planting an array of flowers with her grandma, reading a good book in a hammock between two trees, or enjoying summer’s welcoming, light breeze.

While Ashlyn has always loved the earth for what it is, recently, she has been pulled into the beauty of life while making the most of everywhere she goes by reminding herself of the blessings she has been given.

This past summer, Ashlyn started a journey with her close friend, and she has never looked back. Ashlyn started collecting crystals of every shape, size, and property—with her platonic soulmate—to enhance her outlook on life.

“I feel like my crystals help a lot with my self-confidence,” Ashlyn said. “Having friends that are so positive really helps with my confidence as well. I feel like crystals really have helped me overall.”

While some people may be alone in their spiritual journey, Ashlyn makes sure to keep her friends close throughout this wondrous experience. Not only are her friends helping her grow as a person in the larger aspects of her life, but they’re also helping her enhance her understanding of practices.

“I think it’s cool to be able to talk about [crystal healing] with my friends,” Ashlyn said. “We help each other understand everything that we’re doing. Having other people around that know about [crystals] sharing their thoughts with you is really cool.”

The process of getting into spirituality wasn’t as difficult for Ashlyn because she met some amazing people along the way that have kept her grounded and motivated through the good and bad times.

I think it’s cool to be able to talk about [crystal healing] with my friends.”

— Ashlyn Hess

Every crystal has its own unique properties, just like snowflakes, and only choosing a couple to buy can be very difficult. Ashlyn spends a lot of time at her local crystal shop—Spirit Dreams in East Town—and picking out the perfect crystals is something she’s almost mastered.

“I buy crystals by picking them up,” Ashlyn said. “If I don’t have a connection [with the crystals when I pick them up], then I won’t buy them.”

While Ashlyn’s pile of her favorite crystals grows on a day-to-day basis, she finds new ways to carry them with her through her everyday life. 

“Some of my favorite crystals don’t fit into my necklace [that I would carry them in],” Ashlyn said. “I will wear some of them as rings, like my hematite ring that I just got yesterday, as my previous one broke. I do carry a lot of them with me in a little bag because I’m nervous about them slipping out of my pockets.”

While some crystals can be tiny and worrisome for those of us who may be concerned about losing such precious gems, Ashlyn has found ways around her worries by using the supplies around her.

Some crystals at Spirit Dreams only sell for a dollar, but others can cost anywhere between forty and well past one hundred dollars depending on the demand, shape, size, and properties. To non-crystal lovers, these prices may seem a little overwhelming, but to people like Ashlyn who have a practice in collecting crystals, they know the true value.

“I feel like [my most expensive crystal] brings me the most positive energy,” Ashlyn said. “It feels really good to be able to hang on to throughout the day. I also really like my black tourmaline and obsidian [to keep me grounded and connected]. Through my moldavite, I’ve been able to connect to myself better, and the day after I got it, I actually became vegetarian. ”

While Ashlyn is loving every second of having her crystals right by her side, she can’t help but love every single one of the ones she’s bought. While she might have a favorite crystal, asking Ashlyn which one it was would be like asking a mother who her favorite child is.

With some stones, like moldavite, you can sense somewhat negative repercussions due to the power that these crystals hold, but Ashlyn hasn’t experienced this in her journey quite yet.

“I haven’t had any bad experiences with crystals,” Ashlyn said. “I feel like if something bad were to happen, I would most likely reach for a crystal to help with the bad energy.”

All through her life, Ashlyn has appreciated the dirt, water, flowers, trees, and animals for what they are, and now, she can harness that positive energy through something that a wide array of people also take comfort in. 

“Crystals have brought me to a deeper understanding of everything,” Ashlyn said, “for not only myself but other people and the universe. I’ve definitely become more aware of the earth; I hate littering, and I wish everyone would recycle. I just feel so bad for our earth, and I just want it to be okay.”