Since October I've been working on a personal and deeply vulnerable story about my life. I've been held in this process by a group of nine other women... all doing similar work. We're writing our stories of being women... of our own little slice of what it means to be born female. It's called the YoniVerse Monologue project.
My story is finally written and I'm beginning to memorize it. And then... when I thought I'd done the hard work... and that I was at the easy part... the resistance set in. I felt like I didn't like the story anymore. It had been through so many iterations... and I was feeling sad to edit certain parts out in the interested of condensing a story that took 27 years to unfold, down into 7 minutes of dialogue.
And there... wriggling at the end of the rope that resistance handed me... I realized that I had an opportunity. I am at a choice point. I get to recommit or give up. And hell no I'm not giving up! So... the resistance became my invitation to find within me what I REALLY want... to find my direction... to rely on my own wisdom...
Where to look for the wisdom? My body. Resistance is too much holding... too much tension... not enough flow. So I looked to my body to show me where things were tight, sore, slow. And I began to move them, to pay attention to these places, asking them what information they had for me.
And my heel, where I tore ligaments recently... told me about foundations... and being true to myself as I edited my story. It spoke of feeling solid and grounded in my story. And my lower back reminded me to get support, to not do it alone... as that had been one of my deepest wounds in this story... trying to do this alone when I had no idea what to do. They reminded me to address these things every day.
My Body Wisdom is my mentor. It is the structure, the framework, by which I understand meaning in my life.
If you'd like to feel more connected to your Body Wisdom, this is a perfect time to join us in the Body Wisdom Healing Circle. It's a monthly (totally free) call-in gathering for turning toward ourselves to find the answers that we seek. In fact, we've modeled this year of calls on the Hero(ine)'s Journey. March's call will be all about locating our Body Wisdom, what it means to cultivate that relationship, and to begin to reorient our physiological pathways toward connection and sensation of our selves as we prepare to Meet Your Mentor!
I've had the great fortune lately, of getting a chance to look at my internal dialogue in a new way. I found that the story I told myself, that I always assumed to be true, was actually false. It may have applied at the time it was created... or maybe it was only created to justify something I felt I needed to do.
When the story got wrapped in shame and betrayal and isolation... it solidified itself... like some kind of rock. And then it was impenetrable. It just wasn't possible to notice it as a story anymore. It was too overwhelming to address all of the emotions at once. So it sat, emanating its lies... inflicting more damage... as I pretended it didn't exist.
But, these things have a way of continuing to insinuate themselves into our lives... they refuse to sit quietly in the corner... despite all hope that they will. We always cross our fingers and hope we can leave it behind us... don't we? I did.
And as I've been gloriously held in the unwrapping of this story... and the dismantling of the rock that seemed to hold it all as one story... I have found so many personal truths. And one of the truths... is that this story, at it's core, is false.
It means there's room inside of me to write a new story.
In holding myself to unearthing this rock... and in the being held as I saw and felt the things that went into its creation... I've been able to find within me a Fierce Mother. She is the one who cuts to the chase, speaks the truth, and she's always fought for the light... even when the light was the tiniest glimmer. She never gives up. She knows that life is complex and messy and that she can find love in it somewhere. And she is relentless in her pursuit.
She has the trust, the certainty, the clarity, that I felt I lacked. And I'm so grateful that somewhere inside of me the thing I needed but was sure I did not have was actually there.
So the new story begins... what do I want it to be? I know I want it to be more fun... I want it to contain connection and love and laughter and truth. I want it to contain healing tears and words. I want it to be about standing for humanity and desire and meeting needs.
I'm ready... to recommit to the Hero(ine)'s Journey! It's time!
Last night, playing a family game of Clue, my nine-year old ran right straight into her own story. She’s the youngest, and had a story in her mind that she wasn’t capable of winning this game up against two adults and her older sister.
But there was a moment where, by luck, she realized she had learned two of the three things she needed to know to win the game. In her surprise, she gave away part of what she had found out. Her world fell apart. She was so close. But with her slip, the possibility of winning had evaporated.
I know this place. The one in which the untrue story that I believe in comes into direct conflict with what is possible if I believed in something else. It’s a direct challenge to my world view… it’s painful… and confusing.
I’m actually deep in the throes of writing that story down. In fact, I’m going to be performing that story live in Santa Cruz at the YoniVerse Monologues in March. It’s the story of my conflicting experiences of myself as a mother.
And so, as I sat with my girl last night, and she felt all of her anger and frustration and sadness about the story that she wasn’t capable… she ripped paper into little pieces and told me about how much it hurt. My heart ached for her… and I sat with her as she tore the paper and felt the feelings.
And then we talked about the stories she believes about herself… and we talked about what was really true… and we talked about how which story we put our attention on matters… and I told her my story about motherhood. While I talked I tore some of those tattered pieces of paper into hearts. Pretty soon… she was helping me… and organizing them into a larger heart.
She understood my story, and I understood hers. It was so amazing.
Truth is that we’re both still sad about the truths that exist in our stories about how we’re not perfect (because we’re not perfect… we’re human). But, we both found a bigger landscape for truth and possibility. And best of all, we got to feel human together.
As we came to our sense of humanity she made a “snow angel” in the remaining scraps of paper… and we brought greater definition to the angel… and made her “real”.
And so when my daughter crawled into bed we marveled at how the anger and frustration and sadness had resulted in an angel and a heart on her floor.
I’m humbled by her wisdom and her ability to feel her feelings. I’m still worried about how easy it is for her to believe that she’s not good enough. And I’m heartened by our ability to be present with each other.
Ram Dass said “We are all just walking each other home”. The key implication is that we’re in this together. And I think the together part is the healing part.
I'm an explorer of inner realms, a pattern observer, and an invitation maker. I believe that healing the world starts within.
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