In the name of rigorous honesty, September was a paradoxical month filled with great challenge and celebration. I was rocked deeply by the perceived chaotic events in my life.
Autumn, a season of transition, has a way of weaving growth opportunities into my midst every year. As our evenings elongate, I notice the metaphorical inner shadows stretch from slumber. It’s the season of assessment that asks me: Have I learned Summer’s lessons? What inner development is outstanding?
Caught up in each moment and event, I forewent processing and reflection. I find myself now, a month later, observing the emotional high tide at my feet, the shoreline fading.
The program started at the end of September. Transparently, I stressed about how I was going to manage my full-time career, the program, my personal life, and my own needs (notice how this is last). I didn’t follow all of the steps in Module 0 to prepare as advised. As a recovering perfectionist, I started to relapse, getting caught in ripples of shame. How could I enter into a program where I haven’t even marked every box off the preparatory check-list?
More questions flooded in: What was my reason for enrolling? Can I really juggle it all? How can I optimize my time to maximize my learnings?
I realized this was the sole purpose of my enrollment: to re-establish a connection to my true nature, to set myself free.
I looked at my hierarchy of priorities and where was I? At the bottom! In these first few weeks of the course I’ve been indirectly guided to analyze my personal priorities. The only way to be a truly impactful healer and steward of the earth is by tending to ourselves first. Such a simple and yet profound lesson that seems to require repetition to get our attention. How else could we possibly tend to others if our well is dry?
This was the outstanding lesson. This is Autumn’s call to action, to tend to the mind, body, and spirit before hibernation.
This revelation made me reflective of all the ways we allow ourselves to be tossed into the currents of our lives; spinning ourselves away from our values and our dreams. There is bravery in becoming a student. You’re taking a stand in your life to pursue what your heart and soul desire.
If I had more space and this were a spoken conversation rather than writing, we might go into all the ways we could create more awareness to not get tossed into the currents. Alas, here we are in this virtual space. What I will share is how I’m learning to make the program work for me.
In these first few weeks, I’ve been maximizing the program’s flexibility by making my reading and practice schedule my own. I’ve also leaned into this new sense of community. I recently connected with another student one-on-one and was able to share my September story. What a gift to be listened to and to be surrounded by like-minded, nurturing folk.
As I continue to observe the emotional high tide at my feet, I feel reassured that I have exactly the support I need with the practices I’m learning. For instance, I’ve been mothered by Mugwort in making our Mugwort Dream Oil on the full moon and I’ve received direction by the dreams I’ve recalled through our dreamwork practices.
I dreamed of a neighbor of mine one evening. In the dream, he was helping me prepare the house for an oncoming storm. I took the dream as a sign to see him and decided to invite him over to spend time together. That evening we dove deep into a nourishing and vulnerable conversation about our lives. By the end, I realized I received the exact medicine I needed to weather the metaphorical storm: a hug, to be understood, to feel protected and cared for. It may be safe to say that through dream recall, I made a decision that helped me meet a need in waking life.
For those of you interested in honing in on dreamwork, I invite you to visit Creating a Nourishing Sleep Environment for Dreamwork, Vol. I and Vol. II
I’ll close us off, kind reader, with this quote from author Gina Greenlee to ruminate on: “Sometimes we have to break down to break through”
What a pleasure walking down our shared path.
With love and solidarity,
Oct 13, 2022