Thursday, January 17, 2013

Cold and still...

I imagine it's colder where you live than where I live (coastal California)... but we've had unseasonably cold weather lately.  So, since it's been cold, and I've had a cold, I haven't been out to my "spot" lately to check on what nature has to tell me.  In an effort to muster the necessary willpower to get out there, I decided to buy myself a new notebook to record my "nature reflections".  I finally took it out there yesterday and sat.

I looked around for some time... and nothing caught my eye.  I saw some small birds (juncos for those of you who like birds) at the feeder... but really nothing else.  That's pretty unusual... so after awhile THAT became the thing I noticed.  Nothing was going on...

No leaves were sprouting... no flowers blooming (not a huge surprise... but I do live in California)... no clouds in the sky, no breeze moving things around...

Here there are often things growing in winter because it's our wet season... but what I noticed... was that my barren veggie garden didn't even have weeds in it.

Everything was deep in the stillness of winter... drawn inside... things held close... resting and waiting.  That made sense to me.  I had horrible congestion that I hadn't been able to kick... but I wasn't resting and taking care of myself.  I wasn't being still and resting.  Why not?

So... I wondered... what am I avoiding by not being still?  What would happen if I just rested... if I acknowledged that I was trying to avoid something?  I know now... the sadness I would feel over a lost relationship would surface.  I would have to face having lost a dear friend that I had hoped to know for a long time... to acknowledge that things had shifted and that we were drifting apart.

Sadness... that's what I would feel if I sat still too long.

Funny thing?  I sat down and felt the sadness... acknowledged it... nodded to it.  And the very next day (today)?  I was like 95% better... no congestion... no aches... feeling good... just a little tired.

I do believe in the connections between our emotional states and our health.  In fact, it's generally well documented... stress predisposes you to heart attacks and a bazillion other health problems, a lack of meaningful social connection is associated with depression... so I'm not shocked that I started feeling better as soon as I addressed how I was feeling.  And, I'll agree that it was day 5 of the cold... and a likely time for the old immune system to kick in and oust the invaders... so there's that too.  Just wonder how it chose today... hmmm...

Friday, January 4, 2013


OK, so here's dipping my feet in the swirling waters of 'emerge'...

I'm working with a really fabulous group of women on a new project.  It came from a discussion I had with one of these collaborators... where we talked about how nice it would be to have a wise woman as a friend... someone who would come over and help us straighten out our lives, be our true selves, and encourage us to simplify.  My friend said, "well, I do have that... in my friends.  I call different friends for different things... but they are wise in their own ways".  Of course!  Yes!... exactly... me too!  And then we thought... what would happen if we pulled these friends together?  Would we have a virtual wise woman in the group?  YES!
So, we decided to call on more and more wise women to join us.  You're not wise, you say?  That's what we all thought too.  Each and every one of us who are collaborating to bring Blue Stocking Salon to life said, "oh, but I'm not wise".  But the truth is... that we all have wise women inside of us.  She is your intuition, your muse, your inner sense of what is right.  Sometimes she just takes a little finding... posing her questions and listening to her answers.

If you feel called to connect to your wise woman... if you would like to learn more about her... please consider joining us.  Our eight week e-course starts on Monday, January 7th.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Word for 2013

Hot on the heels of the Butterfly post (well... hot for me... it's only been two weeks since my last post!)... my word for 2013 is... EMERGE

It fits.  I've been steadily plugging away for years... addressing myself and my belief systems... where they feed me and where they do not.  I've been accumulating knowledge of healing arts, herbalism, and deep listening.  I have applied them to myself over and over, learning something new each time.  In a way, I cocooned years ago and reorganized my academic mind into something open enough to embrace my intuition.  I allowed flow to happen when I'd only ever been taught to hold.  What was once taught to me as "the way it is" was disassembled, assessed, and either let go or replaced freshly cleaned up.  I dismantled so many webs of entanglement with my family, my culture, my Self... and now... now it's time to acknowledge the framework for living that really belong to ME... and to emerge from my cocoon.

I guess it's no small coincidence that I cocooned very consciously at 12-12-12 (though I didn't realize the link with a long history of cocooning at that time).  I don't really know what it will entail to EMERGE.  Although, last night I had a dream of what is coming.  All of a sudden I have a clearer sense of the butterfly I am going to be.  I don't know where she will fly... but I am getting my first glimpses of those wet wings unfurling.

from the Merriam-Webster Dictionary (parenthetical comments mine)

1.  To become manifest : become known
2.  To rise from or as if from an enveloping fluid : come out into view (like from a cocoon!)
3.  To rise from an obscure or inferior position or condition
4.  To come into being through evolution (oh YES!)

Well... it seems that this will be an interesting year.  I'm excited, and nervous... I mean... I don't know where this is going... what it means I will face this year... but I do know that it's going to be exactly right for me.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Today is 12-12-12... what, for me, is the beginning of getting ready for a new way of life.  I don't expect anything dramatic to happen on 12-21-12... at least not at first.  Though we may be in a new astrological time, past the Mayan calendar, in a shift in consciousness... I imagine life is going to feel pretty much the same after 12-21-12.  That's just my belief, and where I'm coming from here.

Anyway, I'm seeing 12-12-12 as a time to begin my own shift.  From the life I've had... the alignments I've had... to a new way of living my life that's more satisfying.  Just like I don't expect much to change in the "outside" world, I don't expect my inner shift to be all that dramatic either.  I'm just ready to take the steps that need to happen for there to be less arguing and strife and drama in my life, and more enjoyable moments that feed me and my family.

With that in mind, I decided to align with butterfly for this season.  She's beautiful... that butterfly... how she can transform her body and life from that of the caterpillar to that of the butterfly.  Seemingly... it's a whole new animal... that eats different food, has a different mode of movement, a completely different body... and yet, is truly the same individual that she was before... her essence remains steady.  Each of her cells contained the DNA that manifests one way (caterpillar)... or the other (butterfly)... and a shift happens in between... turning on things that had been dormant... and turning off some things that had been active.  And the essence of her... it is on in both forms... her heart still beats... her digestion is still there... blood still flows.

So today, I did a ritual a bit like that.  I made a paper cloak that I wrote old things on that I no longer want to be part of my life... judgment, resentment, shame...

...and I burned it.  I released it to the power of fire to transmute.

Then, once it was released, I cleansed myself (my arms and face) to clean out the residues... to bring myself back to the essence of my center.

And then I sang and I danced... first in letting go and shedding... and then the other way... building my cocoon for the next 11 days.

I finished this ritual feeling hopeful and cleansed... open to what is building up to the equinox.  I have plans for that day too... my family included.  This cocoon thing... this is just for me... to be conscious of my own intentions for transformation, both within and without.

Blessings this transformational season!

Oh... and I had to leave this post to go get my kids from school... and I saw a rainbow!  Wow... what an afternoon!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Nature reflection... is autumn... time to introspect... to bring light to the darkness of the unconscious... to mine for gold... to allows the fires to burn... to transmute what does not serve...

I know because the sunrise told me so...

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Autumn... pulling in...

I went outside, as I have a practice lately of asking daily for nature to reflect back to me.  Today the fog sits low and cool... blanketing our little valley.  It's quiet... and introspective.  Seems fitting for autumn as the daylight wanes and we start to collect our sustenance to be stored over the winter.

It's funny... how perfect this is... I'm working on a self-care class with a colleague... so I've been spending lots of time thinking about what I do to feed myself... what I do to caring for my inner home... the place that sustains me and fills me up.  So, yes, I've been spending lots of time contemplating the "within" space.

From that place within... from home... I can see that I've been receiving gifts... and I can let the feelings of gratitude wash over me.  I've received a gift of insight... of inspiration... and from that space I am incubating an offering.  Home is full, even if I've been sick... and sitting and observing my within-space... I feel the abundance that has been created there.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Today... the wind...

One of my practices, of late, has been to ask nature to reflect for me where I am and what is going on that needs my attention, or compassion, or awareness.  I went outside, and here's what happened...

I noticed the wind... telling me that I'm in the middle of a lot of change (um... thanks?).  I noticed that the wind brings the clouds AND moves them away to let the sun shine through... that things continue to breathe and move and grow... even if the wind is blowing.  You can be blown around like a tumbleweed, or you can open your wings and soar.  The wind brings the cawing of the crow to my ears... reminding me to use my cleverness and my memory to know that I can ride the change on the wings of persistence... and from there I can see the horizon...

I choose to soar... gratitude to all of nature and her spirits...