All posts by yogahs

Embracing the Grey

I spent a few days last week feeling grey. It was grey outside, the energy I felt both collectively and personally felt grey. A bit stuck and uncertain how to make decisions given our shared pandemic.

I reached out to Holly Ramey for a Reiki + Tarot Session and she helped clear out a bunch of old stuck energy. Which helped it all to move. Helped me remember that not only was this a temporary grey it was also part of a larger internal process that has been going on for some time. That process needed me to rest.

A few days later, my vitality returned and I started to write you this newsletter. My heart laughed because in that place of grey I forgot just how much new growth is happening. Just how many new offerings have been coming through too. So focused on what isn’t, I forgot what is. I forgot to honour those blah days and grey times just as much as the bright spots.

So what are those new offerings?

Holly hosts an excellent podcast called Tarot Talk and she invited me to be a guest. It launches here today and you can listen to it on SpotifyApple, or wherever you listen to podcasts. In it we discuss various forms of working with our unconscious Self through the dream, bridging that world with our physical one, and why the dream world is so important to our wellbeing. I also share some of my own journey and how my work has evolved through yoga nidra, dream sharing, and dreaming with the plants.

Dreaming with Sumac: A Plant Spirit Short Read also launches today! It’s funny to realize now because right before I had those four days of grey I had just finished sending Sumac’s eBook off to Amazon. Sumac embodies the sacred masculine, the stag, and the energy of action. Among many other special gifts (and potent Vitamin C), Sumac’s fire-y energy helps you manifest what it is you would like to create in life and help you balance your inner fire. I adored spending so much time with Sumac while we were writing. I even created a short video with a beautiful antler made of her berries. Part of me felt a bit sad that our time together in this way was over.

Each one of these eBooks is a birth of sorts and as something new is birthed, something is also lost or dies. So those times of grey spent in between are necessary. To grieve, to nourish and to just let yourself be.

After any time of expansion or time spent in the solar/masculine energy of “doing” we need too the lunar/feminine energy of “receiving.” It reminds me of a yoga concept of spanda. Spanda is the expansion and contraction of absolutely everything. Part of the practice is in not being attached to one of these states or the other but knowing how to flow through the entire pulse of being.

To surrender any attempt to control and instead work with the energy of the moment, whatever it may be.

***

This post was originally a newsletter. If you’d like to sign up, you can do so here.

city meets nature

Screen Shot 2020-08-05 at 9.35.05 AMAfter four and a half months spent at home during the pandemic, I had the opportunity to stay at a friend’s house for a week in Toronto. Since I’ve been nomadic for the last three years, I leapt at the chance to feel that sense of movement again. To reclaim the traveler within.

I did what I always do after arriving at a new place, I went for a walk with my camera.

As I walked down an empty alleyway half scanning to make sure I was safe, half feeling as though I was, I felt a magnetic pull towards a concrete wall. Then saw that there were plants growing right out of it. The plants snapped me out of my internal dialogue and I paid attention. Noticed. There they were, bursting right out of this human construct.

What did it take for those plants to arrive there? The earth that must be present in the cracks, the wind or water that landed the seed in just the right place where it could break through. Not only did these plants arrive there, they survived and thrived.

As I spent more time with the various different plants I felt their wild nature. Their power, palpable.

It made me wonder more about the meeting of city and nature. This wall, as walls are apt to do, contained, protected an area, separated. Sometimes those are necessary aspects of walls. Sometimes they are harmful. I started thinking of the harmful aspects not just of physical walls: the separation of people by race or gender or religion or anything really, the physical walls countries have built in the name of politics, the walls we build within our own minds and selves. The beliefs we carry as truths.

The destruction of nature.

The plants have occupied the wall. They put themselves somewhere they aren’t supposed to be, dug in their roots, and by that very nature created change. Something in the wall had to give to allow space. Something had to shift and a bit less separation became possible as a result.

Will these plants eventually break down the whole wall?

Will someone put up another or let it transform into rubble?

Breaking down is necessary.

Then I started to think of what we pave over. In the natural world and within ourselves. What parts of you are so constructed by another that you aren’t really sure of your true nature? Can you remember what it is? Before it was divided and developed? Contained?

What is the natural world that was once here? What did it look like? Does the imprint remain embedded within the city?

The plants presented themselves for these photos. It wasn’t until that night a thought arrived to share them in some way. Secretly, I’ve always wanted to offer a photo exhibit. I spent some time with each photo, feeling into the contrast of concrete and nature and seeing how even they aren’t separate. The plants wanted to become brighter, the concrete darker, to highlight even more of the conversation.

So I welcome you to a virtual gallery exhibit, city meets nature: a study of resilience. Take your time with the images and see what surfaces for you.

Each one is also available for purchase on Etsy until December 2020.

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Uncovering Authenticity

103960711_10158294067358377_633393602685344456_nHow are you?

How many times are you asked that question? How many times do you answer authentically?

Years ago, when I was still working in a corporate environment, I started an experiment.

I started answering that casually asked question honestly every time I was asked. Even in the elevator or walking in past the coffee machine in the morning. Any response ranging from, “I’m actually feeling amazing today, thanks,” to “I’m exhausted,” or “not so great, really.”

Sometimes the response on the other side was confusion, or hesitancy and, more often than not, it’s met with an authentic exchange. I let people know about the experiment which usually put them at ease.

This is a practice I have continued and it’s now so embedded I now forget to hide how I really am from others.

Last week I went out for one of the first times since the dawn of COVID. I had my new mask and was in a place following all of the proper protocols and still I could feel my entire nervous system stress. When I got to the checkout the friendly man behind the counter asked, “how are you today?”

“Stressed,” I responded without thinking.

His heart opened to receive that answer and he said, “yes, it’s stressful, isn’t it?”

This helped me take a deep breath and find some relief.

We chatted back and forth a bit and, as he handed me the receipt, he said, “let me tell you what I tell my kids every night before bed. Tomorrow the sun will come up again.”

I felt my heart well up with tears of gratitude and let them flood my eyes as I thanked him. Reminded and awed in the beauty that can come when we are able to be with what is.

Last week I subbed a yoga class that was recorded. I didn’t realize it was being recorded and it led me down a similar path of acceptance and love, by offering a window into my heart and Self that I had never let myself see before. A window for me to witness the path of authenticity we have been co-creating together through practice. I wrote a bit about it here if you’d like to read more in case it might resonate with you.

Let’s try again: how are you?

Take a moment and feel into your heart. Notice the sensations there.
Scan your body and feel into the places that bring you discomfort and those that bring you pleasure.

Without judgment, check in and see what is present for you right now. Whatever it may be.

***

This originally came through as a newsletter, posted here a few days later. If you would like to sign up for future newsletter updates, you can do so here. No pressure of course.

With What Is

Screen Shot 2020-06-27 at 5.46.34 PMI don’t offer yoga classes in order to produce content.

You would be hard pressed to find a photo of me in a yoga pose, though there are a few (mostly done for fun and in the moment). For me, these are conscious choices as I’m sure they are for everyone. I don’t record videos of my online classes either. I do write these posts with the spirit of offering, not one of forcing content through a tube.

When I first stepped onto the mat in October 2005 it was only because my Naturopathic Doctor prescribed yoga for me to help heal my gut. I had tipped significantly out of balance in many ways and my body was showing it through excessive candida overgrowth. It ripped through my entire system and every part of me was compromised, exhausted, leaking, and foggy.

Yoga was the last thing my beleaguered body wanted and it was what, unbeknownst to me, my spirit craved.

I went to one class a week for years. Held in community halls and church basements around the town where I grew up and where there was only one yoga teacher at the time.

When I moved to NYC in 2010 it took three months before I was called to go to a class. I went one January night to a studio that became a home for me as a student and then as a teacher.

I had no intention to teach when I started my teacher training. None.

In my mind I could barely “do” yoga and so what right did I have to teach it?

The first time I offered a guided shavasana, I knew. I felt something energize within my heart as I watched my partner relax. I could see her energy settle and lay down. It felt magical and powerful and humbling.

Little by little, I gained the confidence to teach family, then friends (two at a time in my Brooklyn apartment) until one night spirit orchestrated an opening. A teacher didn’t show up for a class I was going to take. I shyly offered those who had assembled that I could… try. Completely unprepared (or so it seemed) the class came through me. Details I would never remember again. It all simply appeared and unfolded and then fell away. My heart soared! The kind students clapped! I was initiated.

What I love about teaching yoga is being present with what is. The energy that each person brings and contributes in the room (or now, on the screen) is different every time. As is mine. Yoga then becomes a co-creation or union between us. Feeding one another. Seeing what will emerge. Playing with energy and helping it to shift. Transform.

A great improvisational, intuitive dance of tapestry flowing, being tugged, shaped, left alone.

What is needed in this moment may not be what is needed in the next.

To me, part of the artistry is in not looking back. Not grasping. I’ve learned through time about my own internal chatter that used to eat me alive, tying my gut up on knots, after a class (or life moment) when I didn’t do something “right” or well (according to my own internal measure). Through repetition of noticing this response after teaching, I’ve learned self-forgiveness. Learned how these “mistakes” are often helpful teaching moments.

I’ve learned that every time I get into my head, worried, assuming that student over there didn’t like class. Caught up in my own stories of not being good enough or unable to meet unspoken needs. Sure enough that person would always be the one to say, “that was exactly what I needed.” Offering yoga, of course, isn’t about being liked. It isn’t a popularity contest. Or a performance.

Offering yoga isn’t about me at all.

The more I can step out of the way and let spirit come through, the better.

The few forays I’ve had into creating meditation and yoga nidra recordings were strong heart-pulls to offer in a wider way. My Heart Connection album was the first attempt at creating something that could reach more people in an accessible way (provided people had access to the Internet). For me, it was a crucial first step in letting my voice be heard. To allow an opening to help others while also facing my own fear of criticism.

When I offer in that energetic co-creation in person or on Zoom, everything just flows. There’s just one take.

I like that there’s just one take. Whatever happens, happens. It’s spontaneous, intuitive, creative, and focused. It comes through my heart, my gut, my whole being. We all take what we need from it, incorporate, release, and move on. This affords me a chance to practice non-grasping.

To trust in the energetic imprint of class that remains and shifts as its own being.

To not look back.

My vibration changes as soon as there’s a microphone and the thought of an “audience”. Suddenly that flow is choppy and I record and edit until it feels “good enough” to release into the world. It’s different.

For these reasons, I’ve always chosen to not record my Zoom classes or to create online classes either. To me a class offering is meant to exist only in the moment.

This past week I got the chance to offer a class via Zoom through a studio. I didn’t realize until halfway through class that it was being recorded. I felt a moment of panic, then laughed internally at myself, immediately feeling grateful that I didn’t know ahead of time and continued with the class. Since I didn’t expect to do anything with the recording, I remained in that co-creative spirit. Class flowed. What came through was unplanned, inspired by the moment. It was authentic. Not forced.

When I looked at the video afterward I had a chance to see a reflection of myself I’ve never seen before and was shocked to feel love. My heart flooded over with love for that person who was just being herself. The person I’ve been so hard on so many times before and in so many ways. There was no measuring stick. No criticism. No pain. I had a chance to see myself doing something I love and standing in my truth. I had a chance to witness and accept myself fully without judgment. This is not something I have done before.

It was an unexpected gift.

I allowed myself to receive it.

Then, from this loving heart, I let myself share it too.

Nature Connection: Love in Emergence

Nature Connection Album

I spent the other weekend in my closet.

On a Wednesday I had an idea appear during my yoga practice for a new meditation and yoga nidra album. I jotted down the idea and names for the recordings that night before bed. Spent the next day dreaming with it and then set to work over the weekend, fueled with an unusual amount of powerful, strong, focused energy channeling through me. Filled with inspiration and radiating, full of potential and excited with a clear undistracted mind.

Using my closet as a sound booth and pretending that I know how to sound edit on my laptop (I learn so much each time). At 11:46 pm on that Monday the album was complete and uploaded for distribution.

It happened so quickly that afterward, I wasn’t sure exactly what had happened. I felt confused, empty, a bit lost for a few days, and tired. After a such a charged active birthing experience, uncomfortable with the pause.

The pause of waiting for the work to appear out in the world vibrated through me with worry. How will it be received? Is it “good enough”? What if I made a mistake? I can’t fix it now. Will people get something from it? Will they even listen? Am I creating “too much” lately? Maybe I should hold back… What if the stores reject it? Was it too soon after the last one? Will they like it? What if they don’t?

All these thoughts interspersed with a love of creation and what had come through, trust in the process, and hope. Hope that this experience of channeling and being cast in the role of the midwife is to be of service in some way. Hope that these offerings will help someone somewhere somehow. Love in the experience itself.

As the recordings popped up in different places over a week later, I felt a sense of stability and then, with a deep breath I came back to center and remembered… to get out of my own way and ego, try to listen, and let go of the outcome. Always, to love. To love the parts of myself that call out within those surfacing questions because that is really what they’re asking to receive and to offer that love to others as well.

To love in the nature of being and connection inherent within us.

My heart now is truly ready and joyful to offer to you…

Nature Connection: Guided Meditation & Yoga Nidra. This new album includes four unique practices to help you connect with and access the world of plants, trees, and lunar cycles while simultaneously traveling deeper into your own inner world. Discover the support you need right now, what helps make you feel connected, and the beauty around and within you while building a deeper relationship with the natural world, your own true nature, and what you would like to manifest or create.

The entire album includes the following:

Connect with a Tree Meditation
This short seated meditation helps you merge with a tree quickly on a deep level. Finding a connection with a tree at your center helps you build a relationship to the tree world and to embody and feel into the nature of our fellow tree beings.

Tree of Support Yoga Nidra
A yoga nidra practice designed to help you explore what support means, feels like, and looks like for you. Connect with a tree for guidance and receive the support you need at this time.

Dreaming with Dandelion Yoga Nidra
A yoga nidra practice designed so that you can enter the world of the plants and dream with Dandelion. Enjoy an adventure and find out more about what community and connection means for you.

Full Moon Yoga Nidra
A yoga nidra to connect you with the energy of the moon, lunar cycles, and the beauty in nature here on earth, beyond, and within.

You can listen to or purchase the entire album or any one of the tracks that calls to you.

Available now on iTunesApple MusicAmazon MusicGoogle PlaySpotifyYouTube, and all other digital music stores.
(International Release)

Your Creative Power

Your Creative Power Yoga Nidra (1)

All of a sudden I am fueled with tremendous amounts of creative energy. It’s been like a force from outside moving through me. I was reminded that now is the time of Bealtaine or Beltane!

Beltane is an ancient sacred ritual and rite of passage marking the cross-quarter point in the year between the Spring Equinox and Summer Solstice. A time of that bubbling up of potency from the land below and showering down from the stars above, culminating in transformative, sexual and creative energy ready to start fertilizing any seeds in need of growth. I wrote about this co-creative energy last year while in Glastonbury.

Healing the creative part of myself has been a big aspect of my journey. From being terrified to pick up a pastel and draw to listening to fragile parts of myself that want to write a book and unknown creative yearnings of my voice that I never would have considered until they appeared.

I’ve started to understand more and more how the nature of creativity isn’t just those “creative arts” that many of us put on a shelf as adults but it is the fabric of life. To create a life means to also nourish the energy of creativity within you. To build trust in your intuition. Your voice. Whatever it may bring forth. Whether it’s how you design your day, energy, meals or contemplating the best outcome or solution at any point in time.

The more you build your creative muscles, the more options you have to choose from and the more possibilities you can imagine. As this grows within you, it is shared out into the collective and others also grow their creative potential. The more this happens the more we all start to co-create with one another and with other forces, elements, sensations. If we want to participate in creating a future world, I believe we must each start by healing our own creativity first.

It’s from this place that I am so delighted to offer Your Creative Power: Yoga Nidra Album.

This album includes four unique practices to help you connect with your creative life force (or to just enjoy some delicious time for yourself).

Your Heart Spirit Guided Visualization
This short seated meditation is designed to help you feel into the sensations at your heart, see the elements within you, and connect with your true spirit.

Guided Deep Relaxation
A practice done laying down where you scan and relax your physical and energetic body. This is useful at any time and, in relation to creativity, it can help you find release so that creative energy flows more.

Book of Life Yoga Nidra
A yoga nidra practice designed to help you see the stories in your life you’d like to shift or release as well as the new ones you’d like to create.

Your Creative Power Yoga Nidra
A yoga nidra practice designed to help you discover more of your creative voice, gifts, power and specifically see something you’d like to create in your life or bring into the world.

You can listen to or purchase the entire album or any one of the tracks that calls to you.

Available now on iTunesApple MusicAmazon MusicGoogle PlaySpotifyYouTube, and all other digital music stores.
(International Release)

I hope that these recordings serve you well and nurture your creativity.

(If you’d like more information about how Yoga Nidra helps shift beliefs and heal creativity, Yoga Nidra for Everyday Life shares even more about the benefits of this practice).

Plant Spirit Medicine

Screen Shot 2020-04-09 at 10.42.05 AMAlmost exactly a year ago I completed a 3-year Apprenticeship with Carole Guyett at Derrynagittah in County Clare, Ireland. The final step was a ceremony where many of us claimed the medicine we are meant to be/bring into the world. My heart brightens now thinking of the ceremony and experience and what a momentous step it was. My Medicine is threefold: teaching, healing, and writing. I had been offering all three prior to the ceremony and, afterward, continued transformation from this ceremony led me to step even further in and commit more, especially to writing.

What to write? That was the perennial question. I searched and struggled and doubted and self-criticized and feared judgement of others up until this ceremony and afterward something shifted (and continues to grow). I continued to search for what the story was.

How could you be a writer without knowing what the story was? Like most things, it has been a process of discovery. I started many poetry projects, a novel, and then seemingly “out of the blue” a new vision appeared. A new vision that incorporated all three of my Medicines as well as my previous life working in publishing. Plant Spirit Short Reads!

The idea to create mini workshop-esque eBooks. Longer than what you would read online or in an article and shorter than an entire 300 pages on one topic. Enough to allow someone to have the foundation to explore more deeply their own relationship with a plant. From inception of the idea to execution was a matter of days. Before long I had tested the waters by converting some audio workshop scripts about Reiki and Yoga Nidra into eBooks and then set out to write the first original Plant Spirit book.

Dandelion came first and quickly. A true ally since childhood it was Dandelion who led me to Carole and all of you from the very beginning. So a natural friend to help launch this project. The writing flowed and felt effortless. It all just made sense. Before I was even finished Mugwort was (very strongly!) insisting that she be next and then Violet quietly yet firmly appeared. The plants are finding their way through and each book is a true co-creation with the spirit of that particular plant.

Aside from encouraging and guiding someone through a personal connection with each plant, a unique offering included within each book is a journey with the plant to receive a message, some internal wisdom, or vision. Just as you might if you were journeying with a drum or in meditation.

If you feel called to reading these Plant Spirit Short Reads you can do so on Amazon Kindle. Books are available immediately on your computer, a Kindle App on your phone or other device, or on a Kindle Reader. They’re available internationally in all Kindle stores (links below and on this eBook page).

More are sure to come through and you can always sign up for my newsletter and follow me on Amazon if you’d like to find out when they do. I feel some “Tree Spirit” books on the horizon, starting with Hawthorn.

Accepting Retreat

I usually walk directly into the eye of the storm.

My autonomic nervous system responses of both fight and freeze are strong. I can map this back at least as far as childhood and, quite possibly, past lives. Not only am I prone to walking into whatever danger is emerging, for a long time, I had no sense of needing protection and often came through scathed.

Part of me wore these marks as badges of honour. My pride and ego boosted in some way because I could do it (whatever the “it” was). A big part of who I have thought I was, and how my psychology operated was built on the earliest sensations of responding (mostly to emotions of others) in this way in order to try and control what was happening around me. Hoarding and denying my own emotions along the way and attempting to look brave to the world. To look like I know what to do and can “take on” whatever comes.

The flight part of my autonomic nervous system response has never been my go-to. Internally, perhaps, in ways of denial or trying to get away from the onslaught of those emotional and psychological scars. Not in action, though.

As COVID-19 started to enter New York at first it didn’t feel like much of a risk. Things then changed very quickly and the sheer volume of decision-making had my nervous system re-triggered to allow past trauma to surface physically in my body. The fragments of a decade-old trauma that had not yet been processed reared up and had me in hyper-drive for a few days. I could feel my legs wobble, my sacrum move like jelly, and my energetic cords along my spine spike, flare up, try to get away – out. A solid chunk of energy became lodged with a dull pain in my left thigh. It felt wild and uncontainable.

It was a lot to manage and, luckily, I knew how to reach out for and was able to receive the help I needed to move through it.

Then came the next decision. Whether or not to walk away from the storm and fly home. I didn’t want to risk getting my family sick and yet couldn’t imagine being away from them if something happened. My nervous system again responded – as if on fire, completely triggered and overwhelmed. I felt as though it might blow up. I could again map it back to the urgency of having to make a critical decision in the past (one that resulted in the post-traumatic stress disorder I’ve worked with and healed much of over years).

On top of this was the confusion of flight. Literal in that the flight itself was now deemed a risk. And also my personal nervous system response of flight was never one I relied on. Flight (as in leaving or walking away from) has always felt, to me, like failure. Which, of course, it isn’t. Flight can sometimes be the best possible option especially in cases of danger. I recognize that it is privileged to be able to flee in many cases, including this one.

I didn’t know the outcome of my decision – would I be infecting my whole family? Terror of the unknown outcome gripped me adding more past unprocessed “stuff” loose.

After a few conversations with my mom, I decided to fly home.

I cried a whole bunch, let all the emotions out and then felt oddly awake. Like there was nothing left to move. It felt as though I ducked into flight and surrendered. Letting go of my typical responses, ego, bravado, and also, the ways in which I have judged myself for decades. Letting go of the values associated with those judgments.

Sometimes, the best possible thing to do is retreat.

To retreat – to withdraw and surrender – requires the ability to no longer grasp. To no longer grasp to what is or was or what might come. To let go of expectations of what might be or would be or wasn’t. To also physically remove yourself. To go into the cave willingly for an unknown amount of time.

I’ve written a few times about aparigraha – one of the principles of yoga translated to non-attachment or non-grasping. I’ve looked at it in relation to a scarcity mindset or one of abundance, to the emotional psychology of letting physical objects go, mistaking attachment for connection and even the challenges in finding slowdom. Underneath each layer of letting go has also been a form of allowing my emotions to move.

As I learned more about how to feel and not hoard, contain, or use emotions in harmful ways, my ability to be with what was arising expanded. Now, I can see, that with these shifts my nervous system was also changing. Relearning how to cope and how to choose differently. I have been learning how to keep myself safe and protected. A concept I didn’t value as important in the past and so, grasped as if on a maniacal roller coaster for years, for ways to try and survive.

As I landed back home in Canada, and got to my parent’s place, I felt my nervous system immediately release. It was shocking how much better it felt and how quickly. All the heightened strain dissipated. By the next morning all that had flooded to the surface was gone because I was able to step into flight. Not only was my nervous system back to feeling normal, but it had it’s time to be seen, recognized and to receive a new response from me. It also received the message that it’s okay to go home. It’s okay to accept help. To not try to take it all on.

It was a great moment of healing and releasing past stuck “stuff”. Thanks to the internal work of making shifts over time I somehow (without knowing it) grew my capacity to accept flight as an option. Sitting with awareness, a self-compassionate heart, and a willingness to let go even more, now I know that there are more options.

Now I understand that to retreat is not easy or even a go-to response for many and can be a useful, valuable, healing action to take.

Sound Healing

77327799_2477980795783009_208840967996833792_oAfter a week of self-seclusion to focus on writing my body rejoiced at being able to practice yoga outside today! Under a brilliant sky and warming November sun I set foot on my balcony in Brooklyn, eager to be outside.

Immediately met by a constant screeching steel-cutting-saw-mixed-with-vacuum sound from the construction across the way I hesitated for a moment. Was this a good idea with all that noise? Then committed. The warmth felt glorious on my body as I sat. Taking the sounds in around me. The never-ending construction, sirens, planes combined together becoming neutral.

I started to move on the mat and as I did I let sound emerge through me. I joined the everything around me humming, grunting, grumbling in my throat, guttural, calling out, sending vibrations through my cells. Using my voice when I felt stuck guck in my hips and back that wanted to move. I could be as loud as I wanted! No one would hear me! And so my own voice grew with the backdrop of non-stop volume.

There I was toning. Sighing. Yelling. Louder!

Immersing in the sound of how my body felt as I moved. Sounding it out!

An hour later, as I rolled my mat I felt a different quality of vibration run through me and took time to delight in it. Nodding in thanks to the noise around, my heart smiling with delight.

My soul feeling well served.

Reflections on Relationship

Someone recently asked me how relationships work while living nomadically. I’ve spent the last two and a half years moving from place to place. It was a conscious choice and a privileged choice to be able to make.

At the beginning my intention was to practice opening up to impermanence. To practice the temporary nature of life and to jump into that fully.

In the beginning I wasn’t looking for a romantic relationship. If one happened to find me along the way, I’d be open to it, but it wasn’t my focus. I needed to do a lot more healing of my Self first – my own trauma responses as well as any necessary growth to actually have the skills of being in relationship without betraying myself. Without losing myself.

I also sought to develop the practical day-to-day skills of sharing space with others after living alone for a long time.

This question has been sitting with me since asked. What about relationships?

I have moved 144 times in about two and a half years. I have trusted that the next place will appear and, thanks to so many people, animals and spirit, it always does. Without fail. It has been a huge exercise in asking for what I need at all levels and being heard. To not know where I’m going to step next and trusting that as my foot steps out into thin air, another stone appears. That solid ground manifests out of ether.

Sometimes I return to a place I’ve been before and yet it is always different. If there’s a person I’m staying with, they have changed. I have changed. We have had life experience and grown and each time we become more and more compatible. Sometimes I’m in a place for just one night or may never go there again. Sometimes I’ve never met the people before who are taking me in or leaving me in charge of their pets and household.

Trust.

There is an agreement of trust that continues to unfold and it’s bigger than me. It’s bigger than this experience and it is through this way of living that I have learned to trust in trust. In myself and in others. In spirit. In so much more than I can even try to explain.

What about relationships?

When I sit with this question what I start to also see is a deepening. This process of living nomadically has required that I learn to let go. Instead of holding others too tightly – I used to try to hold them, contain them, control them into being somewhere or doing something because I didn’t know how else to relate or be “friends” and would be so very hurt if they didn’t come/show up etc. assuming they didn’t like me. I tried to hold onto many people in the ways I would never want to be treated or held. I used to do this out of fear of losing them, or that they would no longer want me/love me/need me. They wouldn’t come back. I would never see them again.

I would be lost.

Somewhere in the recent past, I loosened my grip completely. I can see the former clasp of fingers tight simply letting go.

Without fear. Without expectation. Without even really realizing that I had done it.

Trust.

In that letting go there is a huge swell of beauty and spaciousness. It’s an amazing sensation of opening up and trusting in fluidity of relationship. The shape-shifting nature of each of us. Community and love that is never lost and never scarce but flowing in abundance. Abundance without the weight of attempting to hold on. Without any force. Without expectation simply with being as present as I can be in the moment to whomever I’m with.

It feels phenomenal.

So, what about relationships?

In all of this process I shake my head and smile because without knowing it. Without intending it and as soon as I was able to let go… My relationships deepened.

My relationships have grown beyond anything they were before because my capacity to be with them has grown. To no longer try to limit them. To let go of attachment. To trust myself with others. To listen without expectation or need. To hear more. To get the chance to know what is going on for other people by being present. To give support when I can. To allow it when I can. My relationships have grown because others have shared themselves and their space with me and that is a true privilege and honor. To spend real time in the presence of others in any range of being. Especially in their home. To show up honestly as ourselves and to share with one another.

I have been in peoples homes when a loved one has passed. When I’ve been sick. When they have been waiting for test results that weren’t always good to get. Animals I’ve stayed with have since passed or have become ill. Other friends have grown their families and now there are new babes to visit. New jobs. New trainings. New lives have taken place within the span of these short nomadic years. I have been fortunate now to bear witness to so much of so many lives and it never would have happened if I had stayed put. Not in the same way. I never would have been immersed and enmeshed in life and in relationship to all that is in the same way as I feel now.

Thanks to this, to you, my heart has expanded and opened to more without the fear of loss. Loss of myself or others.

Within this letting go and deepening that honestly sneaked up on me comes organically what’s next.

In truth, I’m starting to feel ready for a place again to live. I have roots. They’ve grown inside of me and are a part of me. Now I seek a container. A container that feels completely full and empty at the same time in the best possible way. A container of possibility within which to do more writing, teaching, and offering. A container for that work to flourish. I dream of co-creating that container with a partner who also has his own vision of what he wants to create and cultivate. For us to learn how to facilitate that together. Now that I feel ready and I’ll ask now for that and trust that it will come. Knowing that I can’t be lost.