It’s Sunday as I stand on a London Overground train between Hackney and Dalston, sardined by the most people than I have been in two years, my nose safely tucked into my own armpit to escape the humid wet-dog smell emanating in the carriage. I smile to myself about both being in such intimate proximity of other humans and the fact that, if things had gone to plan, I would have at that moment, been 1,222 kilometres south racing through France and into Spain in Punto-baby on a 24-hour visa.
But “not on your timeline,” the universe said.
At the start of September, I do something out of character. I sit down and plan my trip to Mallorca. I write down dates and book ferries and hotels and mentally start packing my things. This is kind of fun, I think, I get why some people love planning. And that’s it. I feel ready.
A few days later I receive a call from the lady whose flat I’m subletting. She tells me she is going to come to Brighton for 10 days to organise and pack some of her things, clean the flat, and handle the handover to a friend of mine that I’ve arranged to take over the sublet. Great! I say. Where are you going to stay? I am shocked and outraged as she tells me that she expects me to sleep in the living room while she takes my bed and bedroom.
The conversation intensifies as I tell her that does not work for me and she refuses to look into alternative arrangements. After half an hour of back and forth, I end the discussion and feel my body fill with holy rage. My boundaries are being crossed and I am quietly furious. I want to know what my rights are and contact Citizens Advice where someone assures me that she has no right to request to stay in my flat while I am living in it. They send me legal documents that I forward to her in an email with a calm and formal statement that she is welcome to access the flat at agreed-upon times but may not stay there. She does not reply.
I am unaccustomed to having to take legal action and hold such strong boundaries. My body feels tense and apprehensive at this new experience. I know I am doing the right thing and also rewiring the parts of me that would have once allowed me to be subjected to such overextensions. I feel it in that quiet place inside that shows me the way.
Halfway through September, I take Danger to the vet for his Animal Health Certificate required for international travel. Inside, we wait 45 minutes until she sees us and then tells me that she can’t do the health certificate because his rabies vaccine isn’t compliant with the brand they accept. You’ll need to get another vaccine and then have to wait an additional 21 days before you can travel. She says. I look at her with disbelief. We are leaving in 10 days. We have ferries booked. We have nowhere to live. She looks sorry in that polite way that British people do, big ‘it’s not my fault’ eyes. She gives Danger new rabies shot and as the chemicals hit his bloodstream he wets and shits himself. Poor baby. We both have a nervous system collapse and drive back home.
It takes me a few hours to collect myself and self-regulate through reframing the situation, rest, handing it all over to the Universe and taking tangible steps to accept these changes. I cancel all our hotel bookings, reschedule the vet appointment and the ferries across the English Channel and the Balearic Sea. I also take to Instagram and ask my community for help. I need a place to stay for two weeks until I can attempt my trip again. Within 24 hours Danger and I are generously re-homed. I feel deeply grateful and so supported.
Twelve days before my move-out date from Brighton I hear back from the lady I have been subletting from. An excessively long, emotionally charged email lamenting me for not allowing her to stay in the flat and accusing me of having destroyed it and inviting strange people to live in it. It’s so ironic. I think to myself. The flat is cleaner and nicer than it was when I moved in and she’s suggesting that I’ve turned it into an opium den. It’s ridiculous. This woman is clearly mentally unstable. Again, I go to Citizen’s Advice who advocate that I acquire written accounts from my neighbours who have visited the flat and see who comes in and out, to affirm that her suggestions are untrue. As advised, I respond shortly and formally with legal statements.
A week later, she replies, again trying to assert her control and dominance with a novel-length email that I skim-read to learn that she will no longer come. She requests peace and time to do an inventory of her things before she returns my £1,000 rental deposit and requires me to give the keys to her friend who will then give them to my friend, instead of me giving them to my friend myself. Fine. I’ll give her to the end of the year. I have all the legal documents ready including information that she is receiving government benefits while being out of the country and will destroy her if she tries anything. My fury with her disrespect and lack of common sense is high.
I spend a week packing and cleaning until on the final day my lower back aches so badly I have to lie down in between washing the floors. I promise to book an appointment with an Osteopath as soon as I have arrived in my temporary home in London, the house of a friend of mine that is empty for a week while she is away. They are fully booked on Saturday and I have plans to see my friend on Sunday, the day I find myself in a fully packed overground train, and walking on the Heath for so many hours I have to support my back with my arm on the way home…
On Monday morning I find myself on an osteotherapy table in my bra and leggings underneath the gentle warm hands of one of the most attractive men I have ever seen.
He tells me that the acute back pain isn’t actually structural but rather a physiological response to the internal organs on my left (feminine) side contracting so tightly to protect themselves that they have pulled my spine and posture out of alignment. He asks me if I’ve been eating anything differently which may have cause inflammation but I instantly know it’s not physical. It’s emotional.
My finely-tuned super-sensitive system has been slammed with abnormal emotional challenges all month long and this is how it has responded. By curling into a fetus position within my own body. He spends an hour working through the tight muscles between my organs in my stomach, hips and back.
I feel relief and release and watch his gentle face concentrate on his work. Tall, dark and handsome, I wonder if it would be inappropriate to ask him to marry me. Come back in a week. He says afterwards. I’m leaving on Friday. I smile back regretfully. And you’re never coming back? His right eyebrow arches quizzically. Probably not. I laugh. At least not until after winter. I leave feeling much lightened and saunter across East London to meet up with a friend who jubilantly reveals that she’s pregnant. I cry, in part because I am genuinely so happy for her, but also because the emotional release from the opening of my cramped-in organs has begun. I find myself in tears from the smallest things for the rest of the day.
A full day of sitting down with private clients leaves me feeling stiff and sore. I book another osteotherapy appointment at another clinic, 90 miles from London, in the town I will spend the remainder of my extended time in the UK for the following week. A sleepless night of progressing aches and pains in my stomach and back bleeds into another full day of private clients. Moving, walking, bending shoots crippling pain through the left side of my body.
My movements begin to resemble those of Gollum as the gurgling protests in my stomach and acute pain that even seldom-used painkillers don’t offer respite to. By mid-afternoon the way I feel alarms me so much I call the osteopathy clinic seeking comfort. The girl who answers the phone looks at my file and assures me that it is expected that I would be unable to do anything but rest for up to a week as extraordinarily deep work had been done. I wish he would have told me.
I cancel the rest of my calls and the next-day yoga retreat that I had been given as a PR gift. Disappointed I find the only position that I can be comfortable in, lying down flat and straight like a sardine with my head propped up. From this place, I can watch films, type on my laptop and drink tea.
The next day, today, I just lie there and type. I type email after email until every email I’ve needed or wanted to write has been written. I write this. I pack up my life once more. Tomorrow we are moving to a new town. One we’ve never been to before. With a lighthouse and sandy beaches and an Osteopath who tells me to meet him outside of the rugby club that houses his clinic.
The month of September has been an extreme rollercoaster of tests from the Universe, recalibration, growth and healing. Landing me in this position here, right now. I know there are many gifts and lessons for me to learn. Lessons around flexibility and flow, around having humour when things change. Lessons around having a strong backbone and supporting myself when someone tests my boundaries, a sign of my growth and evolution as a human, woman.
It awes me how, over and over again, the body shows me that human existence is one interconnected system: thoughts, emotions, experiences, food, actions… everything you do impacts the whole. It’s a classic example of my reticular activating system in action. And if we zoom out and apply that same perspective on the world at large, there’s no question why the planet is facing the difficulties it is right now.
Photo by my delightful Brighton neighbour Fern Edwards.
There are times in life where extraordinary things happen in an ordinary way and all the pieces of your life fall apart and then rearrange themselves like a cosmic puzzle piecing itself into place. The past week has been one of those times. I don’t have answers but I’m trusting the path my heart is being pulled, the kismet tug I’ve lived my entire life by.
It’s been 18 months since that pull brought me to Brighton, but it feels like a lifetime has passed here, living through the most unfamiliar oscillation of our current existence. These 18 months have had me see the world through new eyes. And fall in love with it in an entirely new way.
On one of the first sunny days in late June, sitting on the beach with a group of girlfriends, I turned to them and say “I have some news… I’m leaving Brighton at the end of September.” Sad faces and well-wishings came with the question “Where are you going?” “I don’t know yet… I have friends in France and Greece and Spain and Portugal I want to visit. I think if I go see them the answer will come. Somewhere sunnier and warmer”. Mallorca, an island I’ve never been to, kept tugging at my sleeve.
13 sunny days in the past 3 months is the disappointment that some people call ‘Summer’ has etched my decision into my heart even deeper. I keep buying summer dresses on Depop under the pretense that it would encourage summer to finally start, but that did not work. I wasn’t thriving here anymore. At the start of the year, I had entered some kind of lackluster stagnation, a sensation I refuse to be a willing participant in. I don’t know how people live in a tiny box enclosed by the same four walls year in and year out. I am not those people.
My loose plan was to put my 3 bags that contain my life possessions in storage, leave Danger-baby with a friend, and travel for a month or three, while I let the cosmos move me to my next steps. Then, like dominoes falling, all my potential cat-carers pulled out, the place I might have stored my things was no longer available and I was left with a question in my mind. “If not this, then what?”
In my distant past, the not-knowing would have made me feel tense and uneasy. But the years I’ve dedicated to retraining my central nervous system to soften, relax and trust when the emptiness of the unknown arrives, have paid off. Ultimately there’s an opportunity for redirection and undiscovered answers here. When things aren’t flowing, I pull back and let go of any plans and ideas. This is the space where the extraordinary can happen.
Returning home from the 3rd festival in a month, satisfied and tired, on the 2nd day of my moon, I let my mind wander back to the topic haunting me, What are my next steps? My inner voice replies, You need a car. I can feel some resistance in my body. Ugh… a car. I don’t love driving and I’m slightly traumatized from the last time I bought a car, 8 years ago, that blew up after 3 weeks. This time is different, she says. That was the past. Let go of the past.
This feeling in my body, I know it well, alive with inspiration. It’s one of those times where I am transported to a realm where I am not in control and everything happens to me, for me. I love those times. It’s one of the reasons I love to travel. I get to access it more often in the spaces between. I type “used cars” into google and find a place with the best reviews. There’s a cute car there that looks brand new and only has 10,000 miles. I feel drawn to it immediately. I go to Facebook marketplace to compare prices and models from the same year.
I return to the original listing… there’s something about it, I don’t know, but I trust the feeling and leave an inquiry about it. The car dealer calls me back and answers my questions and I tell him I’m going to sit with it and then come see it if it feels right. I text my most practical friends to find out about buying cars in Europe vs. the UK in terms of quality, price, and ease of driving left and versus right-hand drive. In unison, they tell me that the UK is the best place to buy.
That night, sitting on the floor having a picnic with a group of girlfriends, I ask them “Does anyone here know anything about cars?” Most of them shake their heads, two of them nod and give me their best tips. “I am thinking about buying a car…” I continue. “What do I need to know?” The circle of women looks at me wide-eyed. “Where did this come from?” “I leave you alone for 24 hours and then this happens?!” “What? Why?”. We laugh and I tell them about the inner guidance I’ve received and show them the car I am thinking about. They oooh and aaah in approval. I’m going to go look at it tomorrow, I’ve decided.
It all happens really quickly. The car salesman whom I spoke to on the phone guides me to the car and as we walk I vibe him out. His energy is pure and clear. I can trust him. This is the only way I know how to make decisions. I feel everything and I’ve learned to trust my intuitive feelings unreservedly. He leaves me with the car to check it out while he moves some cars around the car center. The car feels solid, gentle, safe. A blue Fiat Punto owned by a grandma for 10 years who drove it to the high street once per week. We take it for a test drive while I ask him all the questions I pulled off a google search titled questions girls should ask when buying a car. It passes all the tests and I take it to a mechanic for a final check.
I buy the car. A new plan unfolds. It feels fluid, graceful, fun, easy. This is how I know I’m on the right path. Punto-baby, Honey Bear, our things and I are going on a European road trip across France and Spain to move to Mallorca. There are moments in life that I know will be extraordinary before they happen and this is one of those moments. I breathe in deeply as it comes.
I’ve been 40 for 1 week, today. It’s so strange, this counting lives lived by the number of spins we’ve spun around the sun. What if we counted, instead, maturity levels and wisdom and capacity to hold and heal the hard things and find love and joy in all the little things. Some people with 50 spins might get a rating of 15 and some with 17 spins might get a rating of 89.
The electricity in my seaside flat went out yesterday morning. Being a Sunday no one could come to fix it until midday today and so I spent 30 hours with my books and thoughts and watercolour paints and an evening writing by candlelight. I wish the electricity would go out more often. The quiet humdrum solitude gave me space for words: a new article, 3 poems, and some deeply insightful journaling came tumbling out of me bringing me a peace I had wished for because words from under pens and tip-tapping fingertips are the only balms that reach me under my skin.
My guiding anima visited me at 4 am this morning. She only comes every so often when I have things I need to know and hear, often after I have beseeched her for guidance in my waking life. Knowing that at 4 am I will listen without retort pinned down by the heaviness of slumber in my bed. She told me to get the battery in my laptop replaced to give it a second life. She’s much more pragmatic than I am, the voice of a loving grandmother, filled with practical magic. She told me to stop replying to the man who keeps messaging me proclaiming words of love that dissolve into thin air unsubstantiated by gestures. She told me that all the familial healing I’ve been doing for the past decade is done. And that I can finally turn to larger issues. She told me to write a poem about it.
I still have tendrils of that poem floating about in my mind but am yet to put them to paper. The boy I unfriended and unfollowed and archived all his messages determined not to respond the next time he calls. My laptop has an appointment with the Apple Genius Bar this Thursday.
My friend Petra said something to me today that really laid my heart to rest. I was bewildered by my inability to “settle” that I speak to in ‘finding home‘. She said that ‘nesting’ isn’t the comforting necessity that people make it out to be but an illusion to soothe the sense that life hangs in a delicate balance. I resonate with the sentiment as I have noticed that since ‘settling’ in the UK I have found myself being increasingly measuring and inflexible compared to how I normally am to allude myself with a sense of control. I miss my fearless ability to rest in the uncertainty of living in the world.
But now I have a fluffy Mexican fur friend whom I feel I owe some kind of home. Sometimes I wonder if I am projecting all my maternal instincts on him. More than is healthy or natural for an untamed feline. But his soft, gentle love has made me this way.
I yearn for a return to more natural living and am counting the weeks (five) until I find us a home in a gentle Mediterranean bay where I can dig my fingers into the soil and have my bare feet balance over rocks, seashells and sand, diving my sweating brown body into warm salty seas and writing moments at a time in the cool shade of early mornings or evenings. Where my work and art are the fruits of a life lived and not the contents of it.
There are two white hairs in my left eyebrow, eyebrows that I now get tinted every now and then to hide those white hairs. There are a couple of white hairs on my head and in my pubes but I don’t mind those much. It’s the two in that eyebrow that bother me. There are two frown lines between my brows from frowning over fervent words, over broken hearts, over bright sunshine, over things that frighten me, my entire life. There are soft lines next to and under my eyes as well but I like those. They feel genuine and vulnerable and raw. But the ones from frowning too often annoy me.
These simple mementoes that the human body is transient, that everything dies one day, that the blossom and bloom of life are followed by dissolution. The physical aspects are just one tiny part, I am so much more than what I appear to be on the outside, but a reminder of the physical decay in physical life on a physical planet. I think about death often. I always have. My moon is in Scorpio, it’s in my human operating system, and also death has accompanied me from a young age, a cherished reminder to live each day well, fully, wholly, because tomorrow may not come.
What frightens me more than death is grief. Life implies death. Death implies life. But grief implies the cycle of love and loss and grief and joy that makes up life. The journey between the two portals. I have spent most of my life in devotion to words trying to pull together the fragments of the human experience into something beautiful, something I can hold on to. In grief, we taste our own fragility and in love we drink in the raptured, breathing joy of life being a miracle. This magic-making interlaced by words like spells is running stronger and stringer through me and I wonder where it is taking me.
The past year I have found myself in the grief of a world as I had known it ending. I have been grieving all that I have never been taught, all that has been lost to my diasporic living and a craving for a home that I have never known. This is the grief of the spiritual orphan. There are no road signs or directions teaching us right relationship with ourselves and our lands. We have to find these answers within ourselves through remembering the sacred words and rituals that run through our bloodlines. There is a voice inside my body that always tells me right from wrong. All I have to do is ask it. But sometimes I wish someone would just tell me. Not that I would believe them.
My 30’s were about reparenting myself. I worked to heal generational trauma and heal my broken heart and turn that into art in the hopes that it would in turn inspire and heal others and move the needle of our evolution forwards. My 30’s were about digging deeper and filling the cracks with the moist richness of a life lived and loved at its edge. I look around and see myself banded to a generation that is raising itself. Fostering and nurturing the inner children that weren’t given the parentage they needed because those parents were, for the most part, not entirely available.
My 40’s are a mystery to me. I’m curious where I will be guided to next. Over and over I find myself divested from mainstream society. I feel a deep desire to walk away from and reject the linear path of capitalist culture but I don’t know where to find a life that acquiescences to the wildness beauty creativity nature community that I seek. I am tired of the anxiety that follows me like a shadow within the well-organised cities of this modern culture. The rivers of my body craving movement after having been stagnant, a sure sign of grief cut off from the natural fluidity that it knows best from a year contained with four walls.
This is not the first time I felt disenchanted. But I do not know yet where my path is taking me.
I don’t know. I don’t know. I don’t know. Please show me. Please show me. Please show me.
My devotion, further, is to keep picking apart the old programs quietly running my life from the basement of my consciousness. The comforting old beliefs keep trying to rule with notions that belong to generations past suffering and struggling to survive but they are not my stories. I smile whenever they rise up and gently close them out. “Thank you,” I tell them. “You are no longer needed here.” as they go to die. Another death amongst many in this life.
My devotion, moreover, is to keep creating space. In my mind. In my heart. In my body. To keep tuning in to the quiet whispers that land like breadcrumbs for me to pick up and follow as I wander along a forest floor where I cannot see more than a few feet before me. That is another thing that has changed. My eyesight has become more myopic and I blame the endless hours I have spent in front of a screen these past 10 years. I digress…
What I’m learning, more recently, is that it’s less about wanting and more about allowing because when I get out of my own way and listen there’s always a much better path beckoning me. What I’ve discovered, this year is that my body holds the answers accessed most easily within movement.
There are two things I do know.
1. I am at the leading edge of my own existence.
2. The best is yet to come.
Some years are made for fighting shadows, some years are made for dreaming dreams, some years are made for wholly living, some years are made for falling in love, some years are made for heartbreak and some years are the dark, rich spaces in-between that tie all the other years together.
I read somewhere that astrologically we are in a kind of limbo: the old world has come to an end, but the new world has not begun yet & so we hang in this strange in-between liminal space not knowing quite what to do. A world is ending. The way we used to live life no longer fits. Breathe out. But we have no map for what comes next. Let it go.
There is a new way of life and a new world rising. But in its emergence, we are meeting the parts of us that have been broken and our old stories of pain and separation are cracking. We are simultaneously activating higher states of consciousness while surrendering the illusions of control and power as well as shedding old beliefs and feeling a sense of emptiness and directionlessness. It’s hard to know how to navigate the in-between…the limbo we are facing.
The answer is to commit to the frequency of your desire…The how comes as a byproduct of you being in connection with your creative life force.
Everything I am calling into my life, everything I want and desire the universe requires me to become a slightly different, higher version of myself to get it. I have to upgrade as a human being to meet my next level of desires. That means practical earthly things like having a more relaxed nervous system, being more in tune with my body, feeling more nourished and hydrated and flexible and strong, choosing habits that offer financial stability and comfort.
Practical magic to open up to a whole new set of dreams. As I come to the end of one huge chapter of my life and a new one I am getting clear on the shifts within me that the universe is going to require me to make in order to fit into the new life that I want. I have to shift the inside first to become the embodiment of what I am calling in. As I am becoming it is materialising.
The past few years have been the culmination and expression of so many desires I had for myself and my life, once. In the meantime, I have lived and loved them all and while living them I forgot to take the time to build new ones. I’ve partied and travelled the world, I’ve had great lovers and awful ones, I’ve built a business out of thin air that extended anything I had imagined, to begin with. I moved to the UK on an intuitive whim and then immediately lockdown happened as if conducted perfectly. I came to soothe my soul, to settle in a home for a while, I came to turn Plannher into a real thing which I seeded a solid address for.
The gifts that the past year+ in the UK I have been given are the opportunity to sit with myself in stillness and willingly move through the uncomfortable in ways that have emotionally matured me. I am now able to stay with hard things in ways I never have before. I used to have an addictive need to default to positivity in every circumstance and while yes, it’s valuable to be able to find the benefit in every challenge and experience, if done as a default, it creates an inability to fully support and hold space for suffering, challenges and growth. I have become more sensitive, compassionate and resilient all at the same time as a result and have developed a grounded discerning optimism at the heart of the ups and downs of life. I am really enjoying and appreciating my newly integrated levels of maturity.
It’s time to call in some new desires: a (more permanent) home, a conscious relationship within a masculine container that feels both safe and expansive, writing books, maybe starting a family, more nature, still travelling but perhaps in a different way, more in-person experiences, more devotion to the pleasures of life.
The more we lean into our body-lead desires the clearer it is where our actions, thoughts and beliefs are out of alignment with those desires. This is how we lead ourselves into the new way, a new world.
Your current reality is the expression of what you accept to be true for you right now. The only way to show up for the new way of life is to choose a new perspective, one that reaches towards the reality you want to be experiencing. To engage in change and create a new version of self and create a new world is to be present and witness yourself without judgement and examine what of the beliefs you hold are serving the new version of self and the world you want to experience. We want to live in integrity which means that our actions, thoughts and words are all in alignment with our dreams and visions. You show up for the new way by taking responsibility for your current belief systems and choose to change any that are out of alignment. Through repetition and practice, you create new neural pathways in the brain and the nervous system thereby creating a new reality.
If we all do that on an individual level, at the micro, if every single person who reads this does it, we create enormous pragmatic change, together. Of course, this process feels terrifying. It requires a shedding of old skin, old identities, old thought patterns, old worldviews, old assumptions. It can feel like a betrayal of the you that’s gotten you to this point and the grief of leaving them behind can feel overwhelming at times. Nonetheless, every part of you will meet you where you now find yourself in a newly emerged way. It takes tremendous self-trust and courage to build a new world, your new world but your desires, determination and hope will see you through.
Most mornings I wake to an aching heart. I place a hand sometimes both, over my heart and remind myself that I am love, that there is limitless love around me, that I am not alone. I’m not even sure anymore what I am mourning but there’s an unbounded deep sadness in me. I just want it to end. I feel fragile, vulnerable and sensitive, there’s a cynicism creeping in and I resent it. I want my innocence back.
I spend the weekends in London with one of my best friends. Her company and way of being are soul-and-heart soothing. I feel so safe and content when I am with her. She has recently gone through her own kind of heartbreak. We are healing side by side. I am so grateful for her.
There are fine lines collecting under my eyes and a frown that is becoming more permanent and I refuse to buy into the idea of ageing. I know I can rewire any belief system and I recommit to my own vibrancy and wellbeing. I ask my intuition what I need and devote myself to it. She says: Vitamin C, Zinc, Vitamin D, exercise every day, vegetables, eating light, passion, creativity, relaxation, harmonious relationships, honouring what I want and need. Most of those things I’m already doing. I start putting Castor oil packs on my liver and reproductive system in the evening and see so much shift and move out of me. A gorgeous Russian woman teaches me face massage and I learn face yoga and begin sucking on little sachets of Vitamin C. Feeling good is my priority.
My relationship with myself changes. Perhaps I have never loved myself in this way before. There is a nuanced subtlety to it. A sensitivity and honesty that is new. The heavy heart, sadness and grief start to melt away and are replaced with anger, disappointment and confusion. I want it all to go away but I hold it close knowing that the only way out is through. Every now and then it overwhelms me and I weep. Big, ugly, noisy sobs shake my entire body until everything inside me feels loose.
One morning I eat a warm croissant and four tiny blue-veined mushrooms and spend the day drifting through a myriad of realities asking each one to bring back to wholeness what has been lost. I scribble endless pages in my journal and draw a card that tells me to restore greater harmony to our Earth. I have nothing to give but my words, I think and hope that this is enough as I write poems and stories and feelings that are meant to soothe and calm and soften the gaze inwards. I walk beside the English Channel over the pebbles until the sun slips behind the clouds transforming the day’s warmth into biting cold. I am restored.
There is an unexpected softness to the beginning of this month. My work feels inspired, fulfilling, joyful. I film and present a free 28 Day Journaling Challenge and receive the sweetest notes from women who feel held and carried through this practice. I develop a new program called HER WAY and sense that it is one of the best things I have ever created. I go to the farmers market every Friday and take time to touch, smell and choose local, organic produce for the week ahead. My body craves movement like never before and I blend pilates with yoga or running every day depending on what I am drawn to. I feel balanced, vibrant, satisfied. I make a new friend but crave community in the form of a village. I am excited and scared because I can feel myself embarking on a whole new way of living. It is unfolding before me even though I cannot yet make sense of it.
It is as if I have to be broken in order to become new again. I am creating a new perspective on what my reality looks like. It all takes longer in the physical world — like wading through molasses — than it does as the lighting-fast synapses activate these transformations that occur in my mind. The old ideas and paradigms around what formulates a happy, successful life are falling away and something new is revealing itself. I am left with a sense of curiosity and wonder and an imbued knowing that I can only give all of myself from a place of fullness and wholeness. I want to speak to this more but it requires a page of its own. I am awakening from tight bud to blossom, from maiden to mother, from immature girl to emboldened woman. At almost 40, I realise I have always been a little behind my time…
One of my lessons this month is that I am equally as eager to be loved as everyone else. The human in me sometimes neglects my integrity by way of my yearning for deep intimate love and connection. I wonder if I am a love addict. Then I wonder if it’s helpful to label it this way. I make a pact not to throw myself into love as easily next time.
The test comes soon after. My new friend begins to demands an unrequited intimacy from me that I do not feel. His approach is gentle and hopeful but skillless and artless and leaves me reeling. I want to find a way to maintain the friendship and connection without the promise for more but fail and hurt him with my refusal and lack of reciprocation but fail. Formerly, I would have let myself be swept away into the romance of it all but this time I stand steadfast and centred in my knowing that the love I truly want is spectacular, and not mediocre.
90 women join me for an emblazoned month-long journey in HER WAY. 90 women that formed the most powerful alliance, supporting, uplifting, cheering one another on and created a fertile yet safe space for growth, vulnerability and expansion. Very quickly it was apparent that, when given a chance, women will rise most profoundly through alliance and collaboration. Each olive call left me more exhilarated than the last and I thought this, this is it. I can create the community I am yearning for. As we nudge towards the end of our month together I started receiving emails and messages from them. “I’ve never been in a group before where I’ve felt this kind of energy from the group. I’ve been in other group programs and they have been nothing in comparison to this energy that I felt from HER WAY.” “I’ve never felt so uplifted and supported before in my life! More, please!“. “I miss meeting with everyone every week already! Can we do it again?” “Can we keep this going?” I start wondering if we could find a way to create an even more intimate space for women to grow, develop and rise within their businesses. HER WAY. I listen to what is asked for: smaller groups, more 1:1 time, more support and guidance, more intimacy. And so the HER WAY — 7-Month Women’s Business Cocoon is born.
My days a full and fluid and lighter than those of the months before. I find pockets of joy in everyday things and reasons to smile and celebrate. Then suddenly things take a turn and the gods initiate a whirlpool in my little corner of the universe. Within 48 hours, I receive an actual letter (via email attachment) from my mama after not hearing from her for 6 years, a lover from the past asks me to come to Mexico, the love of my life ex (whom I thought was dead) finds me on Facebook and informs me that he has been released from prison and really needs to talk and I am left questioning the meaning of my existence. A calm seeps over me when I realise it’s all part of the closing of cycles, making space for the new way that is unfolding in my life, and I relax into the chaos of human life again.
My body always wakes before my mind does… I notice it start to slowly extend an ankle, a toe, palm out. I stretch and remind myself to take my temperature before I move much more and then sit to pull the blinds up. The morning light is hazy outside even past 8 o’clock. I lean my pillows up against the wall and read about Circe the Greek goddess, sorceress and witch. It’s Sunday. I don’t have to do anything. Hours later with several trips to the kitchen for water, coffee, tea my limbs feel restless. I feel restless in my life and in my body. A year of confinement to a small corner of the world is unfamiliar to me. I keep remembering that I chose this. That it’s good for me. That it has already taught me so much. And this too will pass. It’s the last day of lockdown in the U.K. and I will myself to go outside. I pull on leggings and layers, Spring has not warmed this part of the world enough yet, and tie the laces on my trainers. No headphones, I want to hear the world today. I walk to the sea and turn left. Past crowds of people in their Sunday best and worst, past a cute skater girl in baggy jeans and a tie-dye t-shirt, past a dozen fish and chip stands, past new outdoor seating and eating spaces prepared for the new world that begins tomorrow. The seafront feels like the day before a festival, the carousel being tested and repaired, the restaurants offering tents set up with carpets to provide outdoor dining options. I walk until my legs start to ache and the walkway runs out at a hidden car park filled with mobile homes and caravans and gypsy girls in long skirts eating from metal plates sitting on the black asphalt. They remind me of a decade past when I used to live like them and give me heady nostalgia for a life filled with freedom a few cares beyond the next meal and the next place to sleep. Here, I smile at them and wave, I spin around to return to the new life I call my own right now. I wonder what will happen next, I think to myself.