Sitting by the window sipping hot tea, I ponder and think about things. As the steam dampens my face, I notice the delicious burst of liquid in my mouth. It cascades down inside my body.
Immediately, the moment is forgotten as my mind drifts to other ‘more important’ things: ‘I am going to make extra effort to exercise and improve my body; after all, it is harder to keep in shape in your forties!…oh and I must get better at working on my business; it’s so small and I don’t think I have really achieved that much these last few years. Golly, if I compare myself to others I am soooooo insignificant; yes, I need to work on personal development more. I must stretch my comfort zones and aim for e-courses, Kickstarter campaigns, exhibit at a craft fair: aim for the stars! Shine my light and all that! Oh, and I must change my diet so that I don’t put on so much middle-aged weight..I cannot fit in any of the clothes I still have from 15 years ago; and I must get better clothes as I am looking shabby these days…I want to lose the weight to feel and look more beautiful. And the wrinkles! I must remember to buy that anti-age cream I have wanted for a while; Debbie said it’d work wonders on me. Oh and I want to be better at socialising and connecting with people; my social anxiety can really get in the way. I must make a point of learning new skills so that my art and craft-making can become more refined. When we move house in October, I must create a more organised and Instagram-friendly home…Particularly, I must get the lighting right and become better at writing blogposts a….and marketing…yes, I am pretty sure these things will help’ I drifted in and out of thoughts as my tea became cool and undrinkable….
Something has happened to me and I am feeling unwell. I have been overdoing things! I am unable to create or do the simplest of activities. I am a prisoner within my own body.
As I hobble and drag my feet (heavy lead-like) up the street, I notice my fatigue. I notice the burning though all my joints and the fogginess within my mind. I feel I will never get better. I notice the health anxiety triggered within my failing body. I catch myself pondering and thinking about other things: ‘ I wish I could laugh again at the smallest of things. I wish I could enjoy a walk with my beloved. I wish I could do the housework. I wish I could make my simple art and crafts. I wish I could be ‘me’ again.I wish I could sit comfortably and enjoy a delicious cup of tea…’
I sit comfortably and sip a cup of tea…I smile…
‘You will never set the world on fire girl! Look at you hiding in the shadows!’ (comment when I was 8 or 9 years old).
It’s funny how paying attention on purpose can reveal useful lessons in life. It’s funny how old memories can stick around in your mind.
Let me explain…
Archytypes to ponder
I have a monthly check-in with the supportive Amy Palko. She is one of my absolute ‘go to’ people for wisdom and guidance in my personal and business life: through the eyes of the Goddess Archytypes. Actively choosing to reflect through monthly archytypes can provide so much nourishment and reconciliation with aspects of self; overlapping with the benefit of using oracle cards. This month was no exception.
My archytype for the month is Amaterasu. She steps forward for women when it is their time to shine, and when they need to begin a process of reclaiming their light. I can particularly resonate with this as I am a regular hermit who will hide from any attention whether it is positive or negative. I can relate to the feeling of hiding in a cave. I have launched three card decks and make beautiful pouches and wraps. I have the most amazing community of people who support me. There are live video recordings of experiences working with my cards and products. And yet, I cannot watch them (when they are related to my craft). I dare not to look; I hide away. I acknowledge and then disappear into my creative cave. It’s an unhelpful pattern, but I still really appreciate and value my community and their feedback. I drink in the kindness and good will. Something around the subject of confidence in my past history and my passion for what I do, inhibits me from looking too closely. This month I notice I am particularly hiding away.
So what lesson has Amaterasu got to show me this month?
I wasn’t sure anything would manifest, other than a stark awareness of my behaviourial patterns around being in the spotlight. Yet, I made an astonishing discovery that floored me a little (in a good way).
I have been interviewed this month by a Book Detective Leda Sammarco. She has a healthy appetite for books and also the story behind creating them. After connecting with my Tree Wisdom cards in a face-to-face networking meeting, she purchased a deck. She could see correlations between the journey to being an author of a book and to the creation of a deck of cards. This overlap fascinated her, so she asked if I would entertain being interviewed for her Podcast. After a few personally awkward video interviews, I was a little apprehensive at first.
And yet I had nothing to fear, she was the most wonderfully relaxed interviewer and I could feel her genuine interest and curiosity about my journey. She teased out many truths that were also revelationary to me. You see, I may not have listened to the recording, but the process of being interviewed was a joy. I read her emails and her blogpost about my work etc. I thought ‘Wow, what a way with words she has. She really makes me sound just like the person I want to be and feel in my business’. Her response was that she was simply writing my words. Thats when I realised. I reflected on my answers to her questions, re-read my website, looked at the descriptions for my oracle cards and witnessed the truth of my work reflect back to me. Leda had been a very powerful mirror reflecting back those parts of me I am not claiming as my own.
I understand this happens a lot when we dig a little deeper into why we admire certain people more than others. But, this was a slightly different experience, as I saw my sparkling reflection through the interview with Leda. She provided the ingredients with the perfect divine timing, a comfortable space to actively listen to my answers, an inetrview without video and her passion for my cards.
If you would like to listen to the interview, then it is available through the link here. There may be things that I say that resonate with you too. I also highly recommend that you spend time listening to Leda’s inspiring Podcasts.
So what now?
I will most likely still feel awkward about watching video recordings in which I feature, or listening to my own voice, but I do know and feel one truth. I am living my life exactly the way I was meant to. I am living and evolving into an expression of my authentic self no matter how small a spark, or large a roaring flame that I may be at any given time in this world. I can shine. We can all shine!
I recently attended an event where Andres from Way of Nature spoke. I plan to write about it another time.
However, I was particularly moved by a poem that was read out at the start. Perhaps you know it? I will place it here as I think it is beautiful…
Stand still. The trees ahead and bushes beside you
Are not lost. Wherever you are is called Here,
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger,
Must ask permission to know it and be known.
The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,
I have made this place around you.
If you leave it, you may come back again, saying Here.
No two trees are the same to Raven.
No two branches are the same to Wren.
If what a tree or a bush does is lost on you,
You are surely lost. Stand still. The forest knows
Where you are. You must let it find you.
** The picture above is a cropped version of one of my cards from The Tree Wisdom Deck**
If my lungs are made of trees…
Highgate and Queens Wood, a clavicular breath to raise my shoulders high: a breath to remember who I am; a daily touchstone; a cosy haven.
Hampstead Heath, an expansive breath to fill my ribcage: an unfurling adventure; a journey of delight and enchantment; a pause in my weekly life.
The Open Countryside, a deep breath, with lush woods, open wildflower meadows, endless sky, caress of the sea with pebbled sands: a life-source for longing; an interconnecting web of wonder; a journey home forevermore.
Tell me about your story ‘if your lungs are made of trees.’