Maternal In Memorium & Mother’s Day Manifesto

IshtarToday marks the second anniversary of my mother’s death.

Ours was an unusually complex relationship, with  complete estrangement over twenty years ago. Despite the common cry of making amends by well-meaning acquaintances who do not know the depth of the family’s dysfuncionality, I have no regrets when it comes to this relationship, or lack thereof.

My mother was a victim of her times and of abuse. She was the poster child of body loathing and repression.  I grew up surrounded by women’s magazines, and I confess, I still regularly take Woman’s World for their feel-good stories and their little strips of inspiration. It reminds me of a simple time when my paternal grandmother would clip the posts and pin them to the fridge, or tear out the Ziggy comics and pin them to her inspirational bulletin board in the sewing room.

My paternal grandmother was in touch with her power as a woman. She was wise, fierce, kind and strong. She lived fully and taught me what it meant to be my own person.

ziggy Times have not changed so much, and maybe even for the worse. Not only are we expected to manage our homes, but bear the burden of less feminine roles as well.  We are still surrounded by racks full of magazines, air-brushed images of the female form, with covers that imply we are flawed; how to be thinner, how to be happier, how to please our men, how to de-stress so we can be all of the above. We are ingrained in a culture who continues to devalue the natural life-affirming work of women.

You may wonder what this has to do with the anniversary of my mother’s death. Everything.

I was raised by a woman who was  estranged from her own beautiful, glorious and powerful self. I had a choice as a young woman, continue the trauma, or claim my own glorious divine feminine. I chose the latter.

So many of us hate our ankles, our bellies, our hair or our skin.  We punish our bodies and ridicule our own needs. We ignore the call of primitive intuition, and we diminish the great power of fertility and motherhood.

We live in the world of magazine promises; to create a common, submissive self that perpetuates a world where our value and spiritual gifts are damned.

As the years passed and I healed into my own femininity, into my own woman, forgiveness came. My mother was not a bad mother as such, she was  truly a victim of her times, of her inability to seize her own power, and grow into her own, always determining her own worth by the praise of abusive men.

On this Mother’s Day weekend, I hope that all of the women in my life,  spend some quiet time, reflecting on their own beauty and how their body has served them well, their own natural, intuitive intelligence, and their own power to embrace the fullness of what it means to be a woman.

More than that, I hope that whether maiden, mother or crone,  that all of the ladies reading this live each stage of life and every transition fully.  I believe that is the secret to a well-lived life. That is the secret to having no regrets.

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Grace: Not Just a Popular Name for 8 Year Old Girls

grace-and-imperfectionGrace is a practiced art. It is a quality of character made up of a unique combination of natural poise, and practiced during the most difficult of circumstances.

As it so happens darling, yours truly was born with little grace.

I was launched into the world among a family of women who were either unstable (read; bat-shit cray-cray), or fiery as hell. I thank my lucky stars that my character was forged on the fiery side. Although passion does not ally itself with grace, it is more conducive to being trained to appreciate it.

During my lifetime as a working adult, I have had the privilege of journeying with people through times of crisis. Even though this tends to bring out the worst in people, it also brings out the best. Grace is a quality of character that I aspire to nurture within myself, and admire greatly among those who already have mastered the art of living with grace.gracewater

Being graceful is a cinch when the world is on your side, not so much when you’re experiencing crisis.

Suffering gracefully does not mean suffering in silence. It means suffering openly with those whom you can trust to honour your feelings without question. It also means knowing when to disengage with those whom have not cultivated the same quality of character.

Grace is a beautiful way of being in the world, and I have yet to master it.

With each challenge I recognize the opportunity to practice; to open to the world and accept gracious guidance, or seek shelter from the overwhelming amount of superficial advice and ill-informed opinions.

It has been a challenge for me lately, but I recognize my struggle for what it is, and it’s been a tremendous learning experience.

Wishing you the strength to carry yourself with gracious dignity, and friends who have already laid a path for your journey toward finding the strength to be  kind, gracious and loving.

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Spirituality for Dummies

being a spiritual person

 

Bells went off when I read this. Every once in a while, I lose my cool, fall down, make a mistake, screw up…you get the picture. I used to berate myself for it, but now I just realize every time this happens, it’s an opportunity to learn.

If a relationship makes you angry all the time – get out. If your job makes you angry all the time – get out. If any situation, person or relationship brings out ugly qualities you try to hide, don’t just cover it up and move on.

Be with the discomfort. Be with your dark side. Learn that every emotion, even anger, fear, resentment and jealousy are part of what it means to be human. Take time to be with that messy stuff and learn from it.

Oh yes, you may also want to distance yourself from the people who turn you from beauty into beast.

Trust me, next time it will be easier, not last as long or cut so deep.

Being spiritual doesn’t mean attaining some bullshit ideal. It means being honest, real, emotional and raw.

Being spiritual equates to being fearless when it comes to holding a mirror up to your own expectations, and the reality that is your humanity in all it’s splendour, and with all of it’s scars.

Above all, being spiritual means trekking deep into the heart of your darkest emotions and confronting the demons.

So laugh, dance, kiss, make wild passionate love, throw out the odd f-word if you must. Be you. You’re perfect.

The Amazing C and her Memory

“Humor is the great thing, the saving thing. The minute it crops up, all our irritation and resentments slip away, and a sunny spirit takes their place.”~Mark Twain~

“Humor is the great thing, the saving thing. The minute it crops up, all our irritation and resentments slip away, and a sunny spirit takes their place.”
~Mark Twain~

The Amazing C strikes again!

After a long day at work I picked up the mail to find two magazines which I know I won’t read this weekend, and personal letter.

Although there was no handwritten, return address marked on the envelope, I knew from the writing it was from The Amazing C.

” I can’t remember what’s in this!” was scrawled in her big, bold, expressive (and kinda sloppy) handwriting across the back.

We often fill envelopes with letters and treats, and then set them aside to be mailed to one another months later.

I ripped open the envelope to find a photograph of me that was taken over 9 years ago.

We were at a cottage, and I’m acting like a doofus ( a refined, gin-sipping doofus) with glow in the dark bracelets shaped around my head like a pair of pink glasses, and a giant glow-in-the-dark-glow-circle a la Mr. Bill style in my mouth. Classic.

If I recall correctly, and I know that I do, we tried skinny dipping. It wasn’t until we ran out into the freezing, artesian well-fed lake (naked as the day we were born) that we discovered the water only came up to our knees. Oops.

Where did that goofy version of my fabulous self go? Money was tighter, my self-confidence was smaller, and my life in general was an exercise of flying by the seat of my stubborn and scared pants.

I’m a great believer in self-care; physical, emotional and spiritual. During the past month I’ve had massage therapy, reiki treatments, therapeutic touch, healing waters, prayer, and meditation.

When I looked at that photo today it reminded me that nothing is as holistically healing as laughter and silliness. They are the vehicles of joy.

The best place to go for a laugh is always anywhere that your friends are!

I can always count on the Amazing C to make me smile, and I can only hope she feels the same way about me.

What I Found at the End of My Rope

The other day I told Someone that I was at the end of my rope.  Someone said, “I don’t believe in ropes.” Hmm?

I wasn’t convinced, and I’m still not.

We all reach the ‘end of our rope’ at least once or twice. What’s important is what you discover at the end.

pendulum

 

This is what I found at the end of mine;

Chrysocolla

Lavender  blends with Geranium

Lapis Lazuli

Fearlessness in flower essence

Aquamarine

Bergamot

Rose Quartz

I fear no one.

I fear nothing.

Copyright 2013

*** A terrific resource for spiritual healing in the GTA is Wonderworks***

Finding Your Joy

tuesdayPerhaps you haven’t quite made it. Perhaps you’re struggling with a bruised past, a less than perfect present, and an uncertain future.

What? Is that right my darling? Me too. I’m not perfect either. I have something important to tell you though sweetie. Scooch over just a bit closer and lean in so I can whisper in your ear….

“You deserve this kind of  joy.”