Today, some things to play with. To play with your wild side. Have fun with this. Go with it. And learn to let go!
The Sacred Journey, Wisdom for the Soul.
Discover, uncover or create a wild space of meditation.
Perhaps a park, your back yard, in front of an open window with a breeze in your hair, or a closed window with the sun on your face, at a table with a vase of bright and fragrant flowers, or a safe, silent, still place deep in the woods.
Find this space. Acknowledge its wildness, its nature, its beauty, its primal power. Honor your place within, your connection, the wildness allowed and nurtured and cultivated within you when you are here.
Sit there for five minutes.
Do nothing but breathe…
Allow thoughts to come.
Like sticks in the water,
And let them go.
Hold onto nothing
But your breath.
And over again.
See what comes.
Watch it go.
Hold onto nothing.
What’s the rush?
Are you bored?
Things to do?
Stay with it.
And hold onto nothing.
Just be there.
The Sacred Journal, Writing from the Soul.
This week, let yourself go.
Do not hold back.
Scratch and scribble.
Go, grow, flow.
Connect and collect and ease and move and see where your mind and hand bring you.
Try this a few times.
Sit with your journal open, and no intention in mind.
You and the page.
See what happens.
Give the page the space, and it will become.
Give the hand the chance, and it will flow.
Give the word, the image, the symbol the opportunity, and it will reveal itself.
Do what you want.
Do something. Do nothing; you will not remain contained for long.
Allow yourself to be free.
Pour forth yourself on paper!
Find your freedom.
Release your wild side.
Unleash your inner beast, simply by giving it space and place.
You’ll see, you know, it will naturally unfurl, release, burst forth, fly free.
An empty page onto which it can express it self.
Feeling blocked, restricted, resisting or inhibited?
Let it go.
No one is looking.
Don’t hold back. Let it move.
Go with it, and enjoy the journey.
Feel the freedom.
This week, dear Mamas, I suggest a book not so much to teach you, but to connect you.
Rediscovering Birth by Sheila Kitzinger “… explores the universal experience of pregnancy and childbirth…With an intimate, informative style that both enlightens and engages her readers, Kitzinger looks closely at feeling and emotions in pregnancy, the physical and spiritual experience of giving birth… the fundamental humanity of giving birth.”
This is a celebration of woman and birth and life.
If you have not yet read any (or all) of the books by Sheila Kitzinger, please put them on your list. From the back cover of this book, I quote:
Sheila Kitzinger is known and respected worldwide as a social anthropologist of birth and leading authority on women’s experiences of pregnancy and motherhood. She is the author of twenty-three books and has been published in twenty languages. Her books include the groundbreaking “The Experience of Childbirth” and the classic bestseller “Pregnancy and Childbirth.” For more information on Sheila Kitzinger and her work, visit her web site at http://www.sheilakitzinger.com.
Though Ms. Kitzinger passed away and left us year, she has left us with a strongly enduring bounty of beautiful words and expressions on women, birth and life. She is a woman I wish I had the honor to have met. This is a poem from her website:
After the soaring, a peace
like swans settling on the lake
After the tumult and the roaring winds,
Here are two balancing exercises to practice for tuning into nature, and your nature, and for letting go.
The first is simple.
The second is even easier.
Start with this. Take a walk. It you’re already doing that every day, great. This is just then one more thing to do while you’re out there. If you don’t usually walk, please do. Walking is one of the greatest – and easiest ways to honor your self, your body, your baby… and nature. So please, if you can, if you can make it happen, get out there and walk. For this exercise, please be out alone. No friends. No conversation. No destination, goals, priorities, important things to do, places to go and people you just have to talk with. Just you, out there. Five minutes, fifteen, whatever you want. It doesn’t matter. This is a walking meditation.
While you’re out there, practice letting go. Let go while you’re walking. Let the movement go on its own. Flow. Go with movement. Focus on that, the movement, the breathing, the feet on the ground, the muscles moving, the landscape slowly changing in a gentle blur. Keep your focus inward, on your body. See how it moves? Your body is amazing. You don’t need to think about, and it’s going places, doing things. Moving legs, rolling feet, breathing, beating, growing that baby inside you! Wow… you are amazing. Feel what you feel like. No demands, no expectations, just be open and feel. Be open, receive. Feel the movement, your feet, your legs, your breathing, your arms swinging, your heart pumping and blood flowing. Can you feel that? Try. And feel everything you can that’s around you. Fresh air, sunshine and shade, wind, heat or cold, the different surfaces up which you walk. What do you smell? What do you hear? What do you feel beneath your feet? Be as present as you can be, experiencing it all, being aware of it all, soaking it all in, and becoming a part of it all. When your mind wanders onto grocery lists or appointments or things you need to do or errands to run or even thinking about the upcoming birth, fine, let them come, and let them go, and bring your attention back to where you are – walking. There’s so much going on with that alone. No need to look beyond. Stay present. Stay with this. Inside your body. And all the little details around you. Different with every step.
When you are done (seriously, this is harder than it sounds, and can be exhausting!) let your mind take you where you want to be. Let your mind regain its sense of importance and fill you back with the to-do list and priorities and appointments. Or not. Why not take this state of complete presence and awareness with you, carry it as long as you can. Even when you’re doing other things… like working on that to-do list! Try it at that meeting, at the grocery store, at the yoga class. Be present. Keep it in perspective. You can work and worry and stress and eventually get all that done or not. And meanwhile, your body breathes, pulses, grows a baby, and moves forward. And what do you need to really do but flow?
Second: lay down.
Doesn’t this one sound easy? Maybe it is; maybe it isn’t. It’s not a trick question, and it’s not that there is a trick to it. It’s just that completely letting go is not that easy. Most of us aren’t used to it. We’re told being busy is better. Really? Why? Are we actually getting that much more done, or are we just feeling that much more important?
Letting go, on the other hand, can be really uncomfortable. Weird. Like, what’s a girl to do? Surely there is something you could/should/would be doing. Is this okay? Am I allowed? Will anyone see me? Will anyone think I’m strange for doing nothing – and not pretending that I’m doing something?
That’s why you’re going to practice. Because letting go may just be your secret weapon, your inner guru, the wise woman within, the powerful guide and/or practical tool that empowers you through birth… and life… with the greatest grace, gratitude, humility and a sense of belonging within the bigger picture.
Yeah, it really can be that big. But let’s start small. Let’s just lay down and let go.
Okay here we go.
Find a clean place on the rug, or get out your yoga mat, spread it out, and lay down.
And that’s all your going to do for the next twenty minutes.
It’s a good idea to set a timer. Otherwise you’ll be wondering, “Are we done yet?” I know. I’ve done that too. So, set a timer, trust it, and don’t peak. It will let you know when the twenty minutes is up.
Now is the time to practice the complete body release. If you’ve been able to work on yoga and meditation, this will be familiar to you. Even then, lying down and letting go is not as easy as it sounds. Practicing does help. Your muscles – like your mind – have memory. They will remember what letting go feels like. So use this time a powerful practice for teaching your mind and body to release, let go and flow.
There you are, lying down. This time there will be no guided meditation, no instructions, no affirmations or visualizations. Nothing. You’ve probably been through all that other stuff before. It’s all good, but it’s not what we’re doing now. Now it is just you, your body, your mind. Allowing your whole self to settle, let go and relax.
Here are the simple instructions.
- Set your timer.
- Lay down.
- Let go.
See if you can fully surrender.
Get soft and loose.
If you fall asleep, fine.
See ‘ya when the alarm goes off!
This state of deep relaxation and inner tranquility will be your baseline to work with during birth. Feel it. Own it. Understand it. Remember it. Know it intimately. Know how to return to it, to be there when you need it. Know you can call on it when need be. Know her name. Silence, stillness, surrender. She is the soft voice inside you. Get to know her sound.
In this intimate connection with a part of your self, you’ll find that silence, stillness and surrender are a part of you. A natural part of your wilds within. Connect with this part of you now.