There is no picture for this post. Only words. Thoughts. Potential. The sharing of stories. Over the past week I've had the honor of sharing stories with many women, in small groups and in women's circles - the taking in and letting out breathe to remind ourselves that we are not alone, that others share our understanding and we are forever witness to the beauty of she-tribe.
Here is one such story. May you find yourself exploring what you are conceiving in this season and what you will birth down the road.
We sank into the comfort of an old grey couch facing each other, passing her new baby between us for snuggles in my arms, then back to his mother to nurse. We caught up on the moments of our lives leading up to the birth of her new son, and the end of my nine month job, each relishing different births. Hers produced a child, an old soul with deep knowing eyes and mine brought forth a release of how I thought things should be, to embrace a life of creativity.
Birth is a magical thing. It's cyclical. I often find myself thinking in terms of 9 month intervals, perhaps my own internal clock asking the big question of will I mother children and how soon? That question becomes louder in the 30s, as the window of opportunity becomes seemingly smaller.
Pregnancy is an experience in waiting. In recognizing that we are never truly ready for the unknown, but leaping wildly into a nine month period of expectancy. There is the moment of conception when you know that change is about to start, your belly swells and grows and eventually you feel the movement of new life in the safe cavern of your womb. Esoteric births, or the kind where idea meets reality, are no different. You feel the transitioning start in the pit of your stomach, and it grows, carrying you through transition until you can't contain it any longer and you push your greatness into the world.
She held her baby to her breast to eat, while we read animal medicine cards across the cushion between us. I watched her comfortable knowing of motherhood, well practiced from her two older daughters, to her comfortable way of being in her body: her femininity exposed, authentic, raw and full before me, nurturing more than just the child in her arms. Would I be so comfortable with the addition of new life looking to me for nourishment?
We've read medicine together before, sipping on wine or kombucha and talking about what it means to be in community, offering our gifts to those around us, as she did to me last night. I'd talked with her before about the sacred art of knowing what the soul longs for - mine has longed often to use my gifts and passions for the creative to be a change maker, a community builder, a creative and I've shyed away from it for the safety of working for someone else, with a semi-secure paycheck and the promise of benefits. I'm no safer working for the corporate than I am working for the divine.
The promise of birthing soul work, of nourishing it from the core of my being with strategy and hope is building a community that not only celebrates soul work, but also honors self-care and our awareness of asking for what we truly need. I believe it's possible and it starts within. It starts by recognizing that tiny idea in the pit of your stomach and allowing it to grow, to be nurtured off your body, to labor to push it into the world and nurture it for life as a tender part of your family.
What if business was less mundane and more life-giving? What if society stripped away our facade of uniformity and allowed ourselves to live business, relationships, community differently? How would you change? Would you dare to step outside of the box that says life should look like xyz? Would you give in to fear and seek the same route, or would you be so bold as to walk away, a pioneer on the high desert, following rumors of another life?