Wednesday, December 19, 2012


Birth is a miraculous play
of blood and bones, energy and breath.
Set on the stage of our body,
birth resounds in songs of
prayer and profanity.

Nothing can prepare us for it.
Everything has already prepared us for it.

Birth invites us to make peace with pain.
By enduring this particular pain
we draw pure love from the mystery to our loving arms.

Birth takes us to the precipice of
our life as we have known it.
Dance on that windy cliff.
Dance your most primal and powerful dance
to the rhythm of each contraction.

Roll your hips and scream.
Undulate and moan.
Breathe and spit fire and,
above all else,
Lose yourself in the pain.
Curl your toes around the cliff's edge.
Then jump.

In an instant all that you have known will be no more.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Tap Dancing and Domesticity

Some women don’t have to think about making the bed, tidying up, or lighting a smelly candle to to enhance the mood in their home.  They don’t have to say aloud to themselves, “Wipe down the counter after you prep dinner“ or “Hang up your dress after taking it off.” 

I do have to say these things to myself.  A lot.  And the acts of tidying, organizing, folding and sweeping are truly a revolutionary ways of engaging daily life.  Until now it's fair to say that I have avoided domesticity.

Before leaving the states my life was lived outside of my house where I was always on the go as an entreprenuer-yoga-teacher-type woman.  I also lived a lot of my life within the creative space of my heart and head, dreaming up ‘what’s next’, writing curriculum, expressing myself on the page and in the classroom.  I didn’t give our house much thought.  Honestly, our house was more of a “crash ‘n launch pad” than a “home sweet home”.

With a baby on the way I’ve had to train myself into new habits.  Habits that involve domestic organization, putting things back where I found them, cleaning up after myself in real time.  It’s like everything they taught me in kindergarten only I’m 33 and I have to make my own snacks.

Perhaps I avoided domesticity in the past because it reminded me of that happy-but-miserable 1950’s housewife.  Or perhaps it was the driving focus on career that steered my attention away from the home space.  Or maybe, regardless of any images of ‘domesticated women’ and their silent suffering or my focus on 'career', it’s just that my mind has never been that interested in external order, cleanliness, organization or smelly candles.

My mind prefers to play with philosophy, psychology, and the subjects of emotional intelligence, behavioral sciences and self-awareness.  None of those subjects you can touch or see or smell.  My mind has always played more in the abstract world of feelings and with non-material plains of existence.

Until now...until a very not-abstract baby started growing in my very not-abstract uterus. 

Suddenly all the things I can touch and feel and smell are standing front and center while philosophic reflections and entrepreneurial aims take back seat. 

After sharing these thoughts with my mother she told me about a conversation she had had with her mother-in-law, Mimi, just after marrying my father.  My mother was feeling uncertain about all things “wife” and “home” and “mother-to-be”.

In response to my mother's concerns Mimi replied, “Oh, Honey, don’t you worry.  All I knew how to do when I got married and had kids was tap dance.” 

Friday, April 27, 2012

On the Horizon...

One of the greatest gifts of pregnancy has been my increased capacity to sit still.  Sitting still has never been a strong suit - not even after practicing yoga for 12 years.  My father always said that I have two speeds:  really fast and off.

Now, 20 pounds heavier than my normal weight and using most of my energy for growing a human in my womb, I find that I have very little interest in hiking 6 kms in dry sand every morning to get a good workout.   Instead I’m sweetly content to walk 1/2 km to my favorite shady spot, sit down and watch the changing shapes of ocean waves breaking repetitiously, sounding off like a giant liquid metronome.

This stillness has introduced me to previously unseen details:  the way our seven-year-old black lab’s ears flop forward when he digs contentedly in the sand, making him look like a four-month old puppy again;   the way the morning clouds move across the sky reminiscent of giant airborne downy swan feathers;   the sharp line of the distant horizon that appears so concrete from here, but, like the elusive end of the rainbow, will never be touched.
My eyes linger on the horizon.  I’m reminded of the phrase, “as above, so below”, a phrase that acknowledges two aspects of Creation, the un-manifest and the manifest.  The horizon then represents that most unique point of existence where the formless and the formed merge.  My Trantrika teacher calls this meeting point maya.

Unlike the classical definition of maya, which suggests that maya means ‘illusion’ (as in the manifest world is an illusive projection of Consciousness as compared to the 'real' world of pure Consciousness or God), the Trantrikas suggest that the world of form is teaming with just as much Consciousness as the unmanifest world.  Tantrikas suggest that the manifest world is not at all illusion at all but rather a denser version of a Consciousness that manifests in infinite forms.  Therefore maya, the horizon between the unmanifest and manifest worlds, is not described as the point where 'illusion' begins, but rather as a magic mirror, the thin line veil, that makes visible to our human senses the embodiment of God.

Seems so perfect to remember this as our birth approaches.  After all what clearer way for the Divine to manifest than through birth and new life? 

Monday, January 23, 2012

What We Focus on is Directly Related to Who Become

(The following 'purposeful outcry' was inspired by an online 'push' from Miranda Pleasant, founder of Origin Magazine, after a conversation regarding 'body image' lit up Facebook.)

What we focus on is directly related to who become. This is why I suggest that every woman who has been silently or overtly attacked or diminished exclusively for her shape and size simply, loudly and with total joy REBEL!

REBEL against the very idea that we must be so many inches wide or tall. REBEL against the very idea that we should have a certain silhouettes or thickness of hair or sizes of breasts. REBEL against the notion that we or our mothers or our daughters need be different to be loved. REBEL against the notion that only until you 'change' can you be of value.

For these thoughts are like chains to the soul. A mind that focuses on not being enough will lose the gift her luminosity - the very seat of power in a woman.


Release the unattainable images. Open to the beauty that is here and now, the beauty that is you!


Start by seeing and sharing the beauty you see in others. The gift of the feminine is how she is animated from the inside out (not how she looks from the outside). Notice the gifts, the expressions of service and kindness, movement, dance, laughter in your sisters and your female tribe. Observe and share the beauty you see! What you focus on is what you become.

Liberate yourself from the influence of a male-dominated media system. That system is designed to sell, sell, sell in a country that places so-called "economics" above health, vitality, and the very planet that supports us. Unleash yourself from the unattainable images that peak out of every billboard, magazine and T.V. station.

As the bumper sticker says, "Kill Your Television."

Revive your rebel & save your soul.

Let our rebellion be a celebration of WHAT IS! Our hips, our thighs, our vitality, our sheer strength of a woman raised in a free nation! Be free! Think freely! See yourself as a very force of Divine Intelligence. Promote discussions! Celebrate other women doing the same thing.

It's time to shift the conversation from "body image" to the SOUND OF YOUR SOUL SINGING! Change the focus from form to feel! We can throw our heads back and laugh and start a new conversation.

This is coming from a former bulimic who healed her self through the practice of YOGA, MEDITATION and AUTHENTIC SELF-EXPRESSION.

1) The yoga provided a consistent outlet to fully feel the gift of my body and my breath.
2) The meditation revealed the constant chatter of my hyper-active mind, and offered tools to guide it to its natural, loving cadence.
3) Authentic self expression gave my mind (my beautiful strong mind) a new focus and an opportunity to practice fearlessness and to listen and share my soul’s song.

This is also coming from a woman who is nearly 3 months pregnant, watching her belly and breast swell like sweet rolling hills. Our bodies are designed to change, like seasons change. We are such intelligent creatures - let the focus be on the miracle of our being and nothing less.

Who was it that said that it is the women of the western world who save the whole planet?

Let's place the focus of our minds consciously in life-affirming soil.

REBEL in love...for Love.