When Happiness & Joy Arise, Watch Out for This Dangerous Tendency

timeless-beauty-capturing-ancient-greek-goddess-athena-ultrarealistic-splendor_960911-22041I was a couple of months into a new relationship, so very much in the honeymoon phase.

This romance had caught me by surprise. I’d been online dating for a few months and it had been a comical, lukewarm experience.

This beautiful man, however, I had met in real life. He asked me out in person, off the apps entirely. I had next to no expectations for us and yet somehow found myself swept off my feet, feeling all the in-love, fluttery feelings I stupidly thought I had outgrown.

Being older, experienced, and aware of the intoxication of this phase I knew that it just couldn’t last.

So I found myself asking, while in deep telephone conversation with him one night: how long before we get tired of each other, do you think?

I had tossed it out as kind of light, flirty, jokey, aware.

Of course, the question belied my own insecurity and a kind of protective need for inoculation against what I viewed as inevitable pain. Right now things are good and it can’t last. Obviously.

Instead of answering me in a light, flirty way he was silent for a bit and tried to answer my question seriously.

Which woke me up in that moment very, very abruptly.

Why was I asking a question whose answer I didn’t want to hear or experience?

We humans do this kind of thing a lot when things are going well. We begin to get fearful. Things can’t stay so good. The other shoe’s has got to drop soon! What’s about to happen? How can I best prepare myself for the inevitable worst?

Of course, there are reasons for this. I appreciate what Brene Brown says about it which is basically we’re terrified of joy because we’re terrified of being vulnerable so we try ‘to dress rehearse tragedy so we can beat vulnerability to the punch.’

It’s vulnerable to care about people so much. It’s vulnerable to have such sweet, deep connections because the reality is all of it does end one day. We will feel pain at losing what we love.

Brene says the key is to be grateful. And I love this and agree.

Being truly grateful allows us presence in the moment. All of us will die one day. All of what we have will turn to dust. In this moment, though, we can be grateful.

When we can be in the present moment gratitude, instead of asking what will go wrong, we can orient ourselves towards what can go right…bringing us to the magic question:

How does it get better?

It took a me a minute but when I saw what was happening in that phone conversation with my boyfriend, I stopped him.

I didn’t want to know the answer to that stupid question, I really wanted to know: ‘How does it get better?’

‘How does it get better?’ has become something of a mantra. I pull it out in the joyous moments with him. And even when I think things can’t get any better, somehow they do.

It’s not to say things are perfect, that there are no hiccups, no tough spots. Of course there are.

But the relationship and our time together keep exceeding my expectations and the limits of my known experience.

So now I try to catch myself in the questions I ask in all areas of my life — do I actually want to have this answered? Do I want to be orienting towards this answer?

This is a practice. We likely ask a lot more questions than we realize — especially in the realm of our thoughts and mental chatter.

It certainly doesn’t work if we’re in a bad situation where we feel miserable or despairing to ask how it gets better. It can land as a futile, sarcastic, offensive, or even bypassing question.

But we can always look towards a better question and an orientation more towards what we do want such as “What can I appreciate right now?” Maybe it’s sunshine and cool breezes. Maybe it’s having my warm coat on this cold miserable day.

I did something like this the other week as I found myself incredibly grumpy and irritable coming home from downtown (a place I often loathe being).

I sat on the streetcar and watched my irritation grow as I found ways to privately complain about nearly every person I saw.

I asked myself — what could I look at with appreciation? What are some things that I like right now and that are pleasing to me?

I began to pick out colors of the clothes people were wearing, and some of the styles. I noted art on the street that I could appreciate. I saw many dogs who brought a smile to my eyes with their sweetness and innocence.

I continued that for the entire trip and when I got off the streetcar, my grumpiness had left me.

I continue to find that the right questions are truly magical and offer us a solid way forward in this maze of life. If you find that that the track you’re on isn’t quite what you want, I invite you to look at the questions you are asking.

Where do you really want to go? What are the answers you really want to know?

Ask those questions.


What if you just can’t have some things now! now! now!

Art: Dawn Harrell

Art: Dawn Harrell

Someone made a request in an online group I’m part of asking for resources on how to help heal and clear womb issues FAST.

Ah, yes.

I understand this tendency and desire to have something immediately. Probably you do too. I’ve done it often and continue to catch myself still. I want or need X number of dollars right now or to drop some pounds immediately.

We have become somewhat accustomed to getting things quickly. And sometimes we get lucky. Even in healing, we hear stories of instantaneous transformation. Miracles happen. Everything and anything is possible. So why can’t it happen for me in this situation?

In reading this woman’s post, I felt how at odds this request was with actual womb healing. In my experience, womb healing is a process. The healing happens in that process. It’s likely never fully over while we’re alive and what we need to do is allow it to happen and take the time that it will.

The nature of the womb, and the feminine, is to be more on the slow side of things. We may experience it as kind of  passive, kind of held back. Diffuse. There is no rush about it, no force that can be applied.  I’m talking here about energy, but you could look at it from the point of view of the physical for example. A baby requires 9 months to gestate. It may be born sooner but it will be premature and require special care. It may even die. The 9 months can’t and shouldn’t be rushed.

Again, this is difficult not only because we are used to gratification coming to us quickly but also because we’ve identified qualities such as ‘slow’ and ‘passive’ as somehow negative or not as good or worthwhile as ‘fast’ and ‘active.’ As opposed to seeing these as simply qualities and acknowledging all exist for good purpose. What may appear to us as passive for example in yin yoga has a lot of healing going on underneath the surface as the held posture releases stored up tension.

Consider also that we acquire and store trauma in our womb over our entire lifetimes. Add to that, we also come into the world with an accumulation of what our ancestors before us carried within their wombs. This is to say, a lot of ‘stuff.’ When we understand and feel the full weight of this, it’s imprudent to think that this can all be resolved quickly or even that this outcome would be the best one for us.

Because…

The slow healing journey is what brings healing to the womb. If it were fast, it wouldn’t be healing. Do you understand?

Ultimately what I have found to be true, whether specifically womb work, or healing and spiritual life in general is that the journey is the point. The uncovering and discovering of what we’ve been holding within us is the key to forging a new and strengthened relationship with ourselves. This is what we need and crave.

It is ongoing.

At the end of the day, the world will continue to throw misogyny at us; it will continue to offer toxicity. It means that our womb healing journey asks us continually to be connecting, purging, releasing, composting, creating newly. It’s not a one-time, open and shut event.

Womb clearing and healing is an ongoing journey full of riches. So just get started without trying to control the pace of the outcome or the outcome itself. This is beyond our scope. Bring openness, curiosity, compassion, and kindness. Patience we can all learn.

You’ve got this.

P.S.  – If you’re interested in getting started in this work, download my Womb Clearing Handbook & Manual here.


The Amplification Time of the Mother Archetype

And ideas on how to make the most of it.

Art: 'The Passion' by Helen O'Sullivan

Art: ‘The Passion’ by Helen O’Sullivan

In the northern hemisphere, currently the earth (summer) and moon (full) are in this corresponding phase we can call Mother. Are you ovulating in your cycle? Then you are synched up too.  I’ve been exploring throughout the year how this overlap of energies may offer some deeper connection or even portal to experiencing these archetypes fully.

The Mother archetype is one that we all have some experience with and may confuse with the role itself. The energies of the Mother archetype are very expressive, nourishing, fruitful, warm, flowing, loving

Some of what I’m noticing or feeling strongly in this time:

~ nature beckons, envelops, warms, loves us up; is primordial Mother to us all.

~ this time of year offers an incredible abundance. It is an enchantment to contemplate the heavy, dripping fruit on the trees and branches. The raspberries in my yard are ripening these days. The fruit grows plump and full and simply awaits release with any effort and I can’t help but meditate on how this can translate in our lives.

~ these are days offering much in the way of a potent and charged sensuality. Nature offers so much in the way of sensual delights:

  • the sights (infinite variety of flowers, blooms, colours, leaves, shapes, etc)
  • the smells (the fragrance of so many flowers, herbs, sea or ocean, etc)
  • the tastes (so much fresh food)
  • the sounds (birds, rustling sounds of trees, lapping of waves, etc)
  • the feels (breeze on the skin, grass under bare feet, rain on your skin, etc)

~ earth and mother is our primary, physical nourishment. In a climate like the one I currently am in, there is a tendency to want to grasp these times really hard and hold on to them. Life is easier, supportive, and more pleasurable in the warmth and the sun and the summer is relatively short compared to the rest. If we are grasping, we can’t be relaxing nor opening up to it. In our grasping and trying to ‘make the most’ or ‘squeeze every last drop’ we are in some states of lack or desperation. This phase is one in which to begin to explore release and surrender. We know nothing lasts forever and we know that the fall and winter must follow.

Below are some suggestions for utilizing these current energies for a deeper communion and experience with the Mother archetype. Use what works and ignore the rest.

~ explore some ways to bring softness and gentleness into your life, and your body in particular. Stop to take some deep breaths and notice where there might be tension. Good places to check in are the hips and jaw. Use some movement (wiggle, massage, yawn, sigh, etc) to keep relaxing these spots.

~ find ways of allowing the natural world to enter and nourish you through ALL of your senses. I listed some of the ways above but the possibilities are endless. Even if you live in a dense city are there trees (or a tree) you can seek out for communion and appreciation? Or find a spot to gaze up at the full moon?

~ consider where in your life you might be grasping and holding on too tightly when you could relax and let things unfold in their own time. There are things we want but worrying and grasping actually never guarantee that we get them, just make our lives stressful and compromise our health.

~ spend some time meditating or attuning to the energy in your heart. Does it feel tense, guarded, or closed? Or soft and open? Can you use some of the communion with nature and your senses to open and feel into your heart more? Even as this means feeling the grief that may be stored there?

~ do you have people in your life with whom you would like to spend more time or share more love? The capacity of the Mother archetype to nourish and love is immense but in order to do it in a healthy way we need to be filled up ourselves. If we are allowing the opening and sustenance of our own hearts and souls, we will naturally want to give it to others. This may even be a time when forgiveness might come easier. Or even just having a difficult conversation that we may have been avoiding.

We are living in a time of great information, great awakening, and great destruction. The plethora of abundance I see in my own backyard isn’t the experience of all, as so many places on our earth are being scorched, many are flooded, many are being clear-cut of their ancestor trees, and so much more. Many are suffering.

These are some of my personal questions in this Mother phase – how can I love more? Can I be more of Mother now to offer the sustenance the earth and her species need right now as so much is ravaged and suffering? How do I do this?

As always, I love to hear about your experiences. Thank you for reading.


Can We Begin To Find the Temple in the Place We Call Home

Goddess of the Mountains by Laurie Crain

Goddess of the Mountains by Laurie Crain

And why it’s vital now more than ever.

In conversation with a dear friend the other day, we shared some personal pandemic ruminations. He said there are some things he is in no rush to do once restrictions lift. Like drinking in a bar.

I understand that, I said. That particular activity isn’t one I indulged in often so I haven’t missed it. I’ve missed being able to throw parties and have people over; I’ve missed rummaging through thrift shops for treasures. I have missed most having a sense of freedom and being able to go somewhere and travel.

Despite not even having a budget for travel, there is still something of a ceiling on even my imagination that I have felt. The right word to describe it is probably ‘depressing’. As in this stark reality, pressing down upon me: you are trapped here, you can’t go anywhere.

Yet, to be honest now, I am not feeling in a hurry to travel.

Home has been Toronto (Tkaranto, the traditional land of the Huron-Wendat, the Seneca, and the Mississaugas of the Credit) and during this time, due to poor leadership and mismanagement, we have had one of the longest lock-downs in North America. I am fortunate and privileged in having a place to live and food to eat and still it has not been without challenges.

I have taken myself out for daily walks in my neighbourhood. I have reminded myself of my fortune and privilege in living both close to the city’s largest park and the waterfront — which has always factored into my decisions when choosing where to live. I will gladly sacrifice some comforts for nature and beauty at my doorstep.

I prepared myself mentally for a long-haul winter but the early spring, as per usual, was the challenge. Especially with no prospect of escape. Here I was walking the same old streets like a crazed mouse in a maze. Where was the reward? When, freedom?

We are still locked down being taunted with things slowly re-opening. Soon. Soon. I, like many others, like my friend, are watching places from afar opening up again. It’s unsurprising to read of flights selling out as travel resumes in some of these places. While obviously I understand this, I’ve come around to feeling disappointed about it.

What is it about our ‘homes’ — cities for most of us — that we relate to as pit stops or perhaps just ‘good enough’ that we have to escape from as soon as the ticket queue opens up?

Is it possible or desirable to begin to relate to ‘home’ differently?

Has it become clear that cities are difficult places for humans to live in happily and healthily for extended periods of time? Here in Toronto, we have seen one of the largest condominium booms in the world. On and off for the past decade, I have worked in one of the most condo-dense areas in the city. There has never been a single time in these past 10 years that at least one hasn’t been construction literally surrounding the building I work in.

(Meanwhile, the number of people pitching tents they call home in the city’s parks grows.)

I have watched and felt how these condo-dense downtown areas have become darker and shadier as more of the sun is blocked out. I have noticed how the green and open spaces have disappeared to be replaced with scraggy random token trees not given enough soil and space to grow so they die after a few, sad years.

I understand that if you live in such a dense area, you are likely experiencing more of this itch to escape. I would be too, I don’t blame you. But it highlights why it is important to look at where we are living and how our environments may support or harm us. I also understand not all of us have a lot of choice in the matter. It’s complicated.

Once upon a time not so long ago, commercial travel was expensive and it was rare. People did (and many still do based on ability) live their lives in one relative space without ever traveling very far at all in their entire lifetimes. Travel was a luxury and a privilege. It’s disappointing, though again unsurprising, that many of us want to pretend that everything was great and okay before pandemic times and that we can seamlessly go back to cheap travel and the way things were.

Pandemic times have not erased the reality of climate change and the cost of cheap travel to our environment.

So in good faith I am not in a hurry to travel. I will not be first out of the gate in booking a flight out. Part of what has been illuminated in this time for me is how important and possible it actually is to see where I live with ever new and appreciative eyes.

So we come back to how I titled this piece. How to find the temple, and the sacred holy ground in the place where we call home, where we lay roots, the place where we spend most of our lives. Ask:

  • Where is the holiness to be found here?
  • Is there more to be seen and known beneath the surface of this familiar and ‘known’ space?
  • What have I not opened my eyes and heart to?
  • Should it be that I’m never able to travel anywhere again, can I be happy and content here?
  • What can I create?

What I increasingly know to be true is that, while it is special and wonderful to be able to travel and experience different climates and cultures, it can be borne of a restlessness and search for meaning that will never be quenched. If I can’t be happy and fulfilled and whole in the place I call home then I will not find it by roaming elsewhere. I will, at best, distract myself for a time.

I keep at it. It isn’t always simple or easy. I step out from my house and it can feel as though there is nowhere new to go, nothing new to see. So I search. The sky is always different, the way the breeze feels on my skin. Every day brings new growth to the plants and the flowers, the trees. In the park there are so many, how could I have ever thought to know them all?

Walking this familiar maze of streets, I’ve been able to open my eyes and melt my heart into seeing the pulsating life, the ever-changing yet eternal renewal, growth, and decay of the earth. It moves me to deep reverie and a growing connection to this place.

I have seen in the Bosnian mountains shades of Oahu. There are times here in Toronto, in the park, where I’m brought back to the feeling of being in Sedona. I gaze at the vast pines, their crowns high in the distance of the sky and I sense that I’m in British Columbia.

It is all one Earth and the holiness and divinity of this place can’t but be everywhere if we allow ourselves to soften and see. We don’t have to go anywhere to find it, it is already always where we are.

As the world begins to open up, many of us will like, or expect to, jump right back into the familiar ways of living (and let’s face it, consuming) we’ve known before. This may be possible for at time but for how long? The reality is that many places in the world are still struggling to contain this virus. Nothing is assured for any of us.

Which is why it makes the most sense to cultivate this connection with ‘home,’ wherever it may be. To touch and commune with the ground underneath our feet. We don’t know what awaits around the corner. Most of us could never have conceived of enduring the situation of the past year. Anything is possible.

But to feel connected, nourished, and held exactly where you are without need to escape…that is an immense gift. It needs nothing added, nor can anything be taken away.

Will you try it today?


A free Womb Clearing Manual & Workbook for You!

I am honoured to be able to offer all Womb Bearers this gift of a Womb Clearing Manual & Workbook.

While it was originally borne out of an idea to help recovery from miscarriage, abortion, and stillbirth what I have discovered in my years working with hundreds of women and womb bearers over the years is that this is the space where we tend to store a lot of trauma and ‘stuff.’ Some of it isn’t even ours to hold and it weighs us down!

Over time, this ‘stuff’ can create problems for us on an emotional and spiritual level and on a physical one as well. Consider all the womb related problems there are and the few ‘cures’ that are offered by the allopathic model of care.

This manual contains instructions, reflective questions, and links to audio meditations to help you safely and gently begin to clear out anything within your womb that is not yours.

It is offered as a gift though you are more than welcome to make a donation if you find the work beneficial to you, or you may like to book a one-on-one womb healing session with me directly to go deeper into this clearing process.

Blessings and blessings to you and your womb!


A Special Portal for Crone Energies

Screen Shot 2021-02-08 at 4.21.14 PM

Art by Michelle Maiden Art

If you are bleeding this week, and you live in the northern hemisphere, you are going to be in a phase of triple Crone energies around the days of the new moon on February 11, 2021.

This is because the moon in the dark/new phase is the archetypal energy of the Crone and the winter season is also identified with the Crone. When you are bleeding, you are in this Crone energy as well. Voila,  triple Crone!

It is rare that we experience this triple alignment, which is why I highlight it as a special time if you are bleeding this week. It potentially offers some very special opportunities and what I would distinguish as a portal to enter into, if you should choose, the deep mystical powers of the Crone.

(If you have stopped bleeding, and are in menopause, this applies to you as well as keeper of the blood wisdom!)

Ok, so what does this mean and what I can do?

First let’s look at what some of the archetypal energies of the Crone/Dark & New Moon/Winter are: darkness, night, cold, depths, descent, going within, death & rebirth, bleeding, solitude, stillness, inner reflection, wisdom, prophecy, the underground, earth.

The Crone archetype is also sometimes referred to as the Witch, the Hag, Hecate, Kali, Grandmother, the old Wise Woman.

She is the superheroine offering for us right now. (and what better time; winter is a challenge for many of us in a regular year. This year we have a pandemic and all of its impacts thrown in)

To enter into the realm of the Crone is to tumble into the underworld. It is the time to drop into the depths of our bodies especially into the womb, the legs, the feet. It is to intentionally go into what has been buried… This may sound scary but consider she has the answers for this time we are in.

This is an invitation.

(It may take some courage. Trust you have that.)

The Crone wisdom holds all the other archetypes – think, Grandmother holding the younger ones at her bosom. She is boundless wisdom; there is nothing she does not know, there is nothing she can’t be with. She offers safety to us. We return to her again and again and we emerge from her again and again, reborn. Alight with transformation. We are her.

When we allow ourselves to speak and listen to the Crone (and our bleeding time), we set ourselves up for a better cycle ahead of us.

Below are some suggestions or inspirations on some activities, questions, and places of focus that you can experiment with at this time. Take what strikes a resonant chord with you (as with all of the ideas in this piece) and leave what doesn’t.

I would love to hear what you uncover.

Suggestions & Ideas for Exploring the Crone energies:

  • Rest deeply in ways that are very nourishing. Take care of your bodily needs with presence, compassion & gentleness. Drink earthy teas and eat baked root vegetables. Don’t wait until you are overrun and burnt out to rest and take care of yourself.
  • Unplug from your surroundings – meaning phone, netflix, news, other people, etc. We are bombarded by information and energy from the outside world, typically at a pace beyond what we can process in a healthy way. This can cause a lot of anxiety (it may be low-grade and something we’ve become so accustomed to; we may not even realize it). See if you can quiet your surroundings to be able to be with yourself.
  • Find soothing light especially as the sun goes down. Lower bright lights and use candles instead.
  • Spend time with your breath. First, notice the quality and the depth of it. See if you can deepen it and in this way commune with how your body is feeling. If you meditate regularly, you may find this time very amenable to dropping into your practice in a very deep way.
  • Read something nourishing. Be guided by what feels right, put down what doesn’t.
  • Do some free writing or sketching without thinking about what you are putting down. Allow things to spontaneously arise.

Going even deeper…

  • Drum. There are many different ways to play with this. It could be tuning into the rhythm of your heart or the rhythm of your womb. I often feel pulsing in my womb when I am bleeding. Can you begin to explore and connect with your rhythms with some drumming? A physical drum isn’t even necessary; we can tap and use our hands and fingers to play out a rhythm with anything.
  • Allow your waking mind to drift and daydream. Notice what you see – even what seems the most ridiculous or meaningless can hold important information for you. This is a potent time for visions.
  • Feel and explore your emotions – whether through tears, movement, sound. If you feel pain at this time, it may be useful to look at any anger you may unwittingly be repressing. I’ve made a video speaking to my own experience here that you may find useful.
  • Pray if it feels good to and ask questions of your Crone. Be open and content in not receiving an answer in the way that you may expect.
  • Pay special attention to your dreams. Give yourself the time to explore them by journaling, sketching, dialoguing, researching symbolism.

Lastly, view any insight and wisdom that you receive in this time as a gift. If there is something you know you need to pay specific attention to, or take action on, make some note for yourself to do so or make the proper scheduling in your calendar. Personally, I make it a habit to regularly read my journal (I treat it like a real ‘book’) so that the wisdom channeled at this time doesn’t get forgotten and lost.

What I know is that we each have access to our own specific wisdom, inspiration, and guidance. And a lot of our vision and purpose, which may seem missing in our lives, can make itself available at this time. Especially because it’s hard right now. Especially when we need somewhere to pull strength from.

So work with the gifts you’ve been given and share it! The world needs feminine wisdom at this time and this is how we begin to access it.

P.S. – there will be one more triple Crone available to us this year around the days of the March new moon on the 13th. After that we will be into the Maiden energies and I will write more about that then.

For those in the southern hemisphere, you are in the earth’s summer season so your triple alignment occurs on the full moon on February 27th – which is also the next Worldwide Womb Blessing. I will write more about the Mother/Lover phase later this year.


Welcoming Being Lost

louis-maniquet-hXHe80zZZYk-unsplashOn three occasions this past week, I found myself lost in the world.

Twice in my neighbourhood and the third time a bit farther out, though still a place with which I am well acquainted.

In one, I turned a corner onto a street I had walked many times before and it appeared utterly different to me. I even stopped and muttered ‘where am I?’ My brain needed a few seconds to sort itself out, recall what we were expecting and then began to see a few of the familiar things – signs, buildings, landmarks. ‘Oh, yes. OK…I see.’

Then this experience repeated twice more within a matter of days.
knock! knock! knock!

Has this ever happened to you?

The quality to this experience for me is disorienting, even dizzying. It doesn’t last long, a handful of seconds. But in that brief time, something happens…

…a crack breaks open in the code of my life.

Personally I enjoy this kind of disorientation. It’s not unfamiliar. I welcome it as a gift.

In those seconds, I feel like a kid again; the world looms so large and mysterious and unknown before me. I feel like I have no body, I experience myself as a kind of floating nothingness. Where am I? Who am I? What’s happening?

Those seconds of disorientation offer a portal, a glimpse, into all-that-I-don’t-know. It is a potent reminder that I am just an experience, of many, in an infinite, mysterious world.

Even the most basic, elementary things I think I know – perhaps I really don’t. Perhaps there is nothing at all that should be left off the table; what can I really be sure of?

And can I be okay with not being sure of anything? Where does that leave me?

This is a breaking apart, and allowing, that’s been happening for many years. Where it is nudging me towards is more permeability, more flexibility, more curiosity, less attachment to who I might think I am and what I think I know.

I receive this as a gift.
Especially now when I think it would be good for us to question all we think we know. I think this would be a gift most especially for people who think they do question everything already. Because this is ultimately not about questioning what is outside of ourselves.

It’s questioning what is inside.
What is the realest of the real for you, and could it be false? Or something else entirely?

Are you willing to even entertain the question?

Photo by Louis Maniquet on Unsplash


Where freedom is found

IMG_0997Some days send me a gift. Like this vision of the water at the end of the street around the corner from my home. I turned the corner and, here, suddenly it feels like I’m in California.

I gaze at the water on the horizon… I pretend it’s the ocean and I’m walking westward.

I drop myself fully in the feeling of being in California walking toward the Pacific Ocean a short distance away. I feel myself melting, relaxing.
I consider why the flavour and the feel of the west coast soothes me in ways that Toronto seems to fall short. It comes down to a feeling of freedom and so the gift of today is to show me, freedom is a state of being, internally, either available wherever I am or, in fact, not at all.

This isn’t easy for me to fully embody at most times. I need to build this muscle of knowing and feeling myself to be free.

I walk down the street, amplifying California in my cells, and make my way to the water. This was not the original plan but I didn’t know setting out of my house today that I would be visiting the west coast.

This body of water is not the ocean, we call it a great lake but with the wind being what it is today on this vividly bright, beautiful fall day, it feels like the ocean. Waves crash onto the shore. To my ears the sound is music. The mist travels on the wind and gently sprays my face. I sit on the beach for a while and I watch the seagulls too, and they are a trip.

This is what they do.

In the air, wings spread, they are carried by the wind. It is all allowing.
A slight tuck, here and there, a slight re-angling, a slight withdrawing of the wings has them slip through the wind, drop down to a landing if they would like or be carried a little differently in the sky. All of them offer this allowing and surrender to the wind.
There is not a single one attempting to fly against the wind. They don’t do it. There is no imposing of will on the direction of the wind. There is no struggle.
Just a simple allowing of being carried by the wind. I consider how I’m witnessing intelligence and wisdom here.
And also, the most free of all creatures.


Nana’s Kitchen

gerald-a.-frank-crone-in-the-kitchen

Crone in the Kitchen by Gerald Frank

My grandmother stands
at the large wood stove
in her kitchen built of stone
at a time before the luxury of pipes and running water.
(do you remember to stop for her and see such as luxury?)

Actually, her kitchen sits unchanged
maybe for centuries
still not knowing such luxury.
Maybe just more broken open,
overgrowing, overrun.

9 years old
on the first visit here to her farm
Old enough to be aware
of where I am
Old enough to save a memory

the rural hillsides, a village called
Boljkovci

Her kitchen is always dark,
this little freestanding hut
built away from the main house (of 2 rooms)

It is ancient. It is cold. I have to get dressed and wear shoes to walk here, to sit here. Its smell all smoky, damp and barn-like all at once.

It is so strange to me, this kitchen.
Not what I have known a kitchen to be.
Their entire home not what I have understood a home to be….
like
something yanked out of a different era
that evolution had overlooked and bypassed just about entirely.

like
a place we could be visiting on a school trip to see how people used to live…
staged, stove & furniture roped off.

only it’s not.

I don’t entirely understand this…
I am uncomfortable.
I feel sad.
I feel anxious.
(I would like to leave now but know I can’t)

I am quiet.

Grandmother prepares some eggs for me.
I don’t know if I can eat it
but then
the plate is set down before me and
something in their presentation reminds me of my mother
As does her endearment spoken to me, my mom’s ‘peeleh’
eat, my little chick

Ah….my grandma called my mom peeleh
my mom calls me peeleh
how far back does it go, I wonder…
peeleh…
who started this endearment
and when?

Her eyes are kind
I feel I can trust her
though
so much of what I’m seeing kind of
scares me…
the harsh black widow’s garb…
this hunched back…the
profile of her head reminding me of the illustrations
in fairy tales of witches….

this is where i come from

her eyes are kind, yes,
and don’t mask the suffering beneath

is this mine too?

the deeply etched lines on her face
her inflamed and scabbed legs
the gnarling hands

I eat what I can of the eggs and the cheese
but they too
taste strange to me
and tough to swallow
as though
I’m ingesting this place with each bite

I go outside into the summer day
just beyond the yard
the green rolling hills beckon me
Warm and bright outside.

I run down a hill

out of breath
I collapse on the grass
looking up at the blue skies
and rolling puffy clouds

despite all,
elated in this place

there is so much beauty

Art by Gerald Frank


how my anxiety dissipated

Special Half-Day August Retreat Click hereIn these past few weeks, I’ve experienced an unusual amount of anxiety sometimes bordering on despair.

I think it’s been the consumption of too much of the news and current events in our world.

Of course, we’re in some astrologically turbulent times as well (if you follow the stars maybe you can relate) and I’ve certainly been visited by lingering fragments from my past seeking some resolution and integration.

Naturally I’ve been remembering to drop into my womb space in these times. When I feel unsafe, this is what I do. However this – in womb space – is actually where I’ve noticed quite a bit of this anxiety. The place where I’m accustomed to feeling safe and flowing and peaceful, had become just the opposite.

The sensations I encountered in womb felt like a painful stretching of the tendons and muscle to the point of physical pain. At other times it has felt like sharp boulders knocking around in there – weighty, sharp, dangerous.

It’s been a terrible feeling, made worse because I was experiencing it in my ‘safe’ space. Where was there to go then? When and how would it shift?

Well, it did shift and release and it happened in group, while facilitating two Art of Feminine Presence circles on back-to-back evenings. The safe space was still a safe space (!) but in this instance, with this depth of emotion, I couldn’t access the safety by myself. I needed the presence of others doing the same thing with me.

This is a real thing for most women – the need to tend and befriend. When stressed, we need other people – though, the right people for sure! We need community, we need to be safely held and witnessed.

(It’s humbling to have to learn this again and again but I am so grateful)

How much are you holding in?

How much are you dealing with on your own hoping it will go away, just pass, or that you’ll just figure it out?

Are you stuck feeling like you should be feeling happier with all the (on the surface) good things going on in life when underneath it all something just doesn’t feel right?

And when I think about the big issues in the world right now and what the antidote is, I think it starts exactly with this: women coming together to dig deep within, listen to, and support, each other. We need spaces where an authentic expression of ourselves, new and miraculous, can open up, be cheered and supported. So that we can live this authentic expression out in the world, no matter where we are. So that something new can be born.

This type of space and community doesn’t typically just happen on its own. It needs to be created, crafted, curated, cherished. In other words, it takes something!

It takes something for me too.

I’m holding a special 1/2 day Art of Feminine Presence Intensive in Toronto on August 10th, 2019. The early-bird special is on offer until the end of July at a very affordable $67. You may register here
(or send an e-transfer to lkevic@gmail.com and save on the eventbrite fees)

Whether you’ve participated before or whether this is your first time, this is for you. Together, in a small group setting, we will explore what it feels like to beginning tapping into, and living from, the Feminine Essence. Together, we are able to harness this energy and leave with a very special infusion of the rightness and holiness of the Feminine.

This happens every time. I hope you can join us and begin to relieve some of the discomfort, pain, anxiety of our turbulent times.