Thursday, December 9, 2010
Thursday, October 21, 2010
Wabi sabi...embracing imperfections. Big Sigh. Yes! A word, a philosophy, yes, a philosophy, a train of thought, a shared idea embracing imperfection.....embracing...No...Celebrating the cracks in life.
Who couldn't, who can't , who wouldn't want to embrace, hug, squeeze the livin daylights out of a philosophy that rewards, celebrates, appreciates our faults.
Balance...alot of the conmmunication I am receiving from the Source latley has been encompassed in a mesage stressing balance....balance and duality.....appreciating both the light and the dark. For is the dark not necessary to see the light?
Moment by moment, i am reassured that i am closer if not bang on the path that is calling to me.
In yoga this is darhma, what one is meant to do. Life's purpose.
Constant moments of reassurance lately that i am where i am meant to be... but how could I or you be anywhere else?
We are all exactly where we are meant to be along the path at each moment.
I thought going to see Po'Girl live at a small private venue would be enough creative juice to get back to writing but no, it was showing up at a yoga workshop that i knew I wanted to be at even though I had no real idea what it was about....it was showing up for that that reinforced my place among the stars.
Thank-you to those of you who walk this earth and reside within their own centres....for you i am grateful...for you I look to mimic in hopes of walking this earth from my own centre....
Thank you for wabi sabi...thank you for the gift of seeing perfection in imperfection...for relishing the flaws and knowing that they are so so necessary for growth....for loving the stretching even though there may be growing pains...thank-you.
In gratitude, Tricia
Monday, October 4, 2010
Did you miss me?
Did you notice this empty space?
Do you want a recap or should we just move forward? From right here, the right now, this most recent moment in time/space?
I think I will share with you some of the journeys that took place but not today...we'll save that for another post (or two) altogether.
My most recent adventures include a weekend that just wrapped up of intiation into the world of shamanism.
Does that word immediately conjure images in your mind ? Do you hear that word and feel yourself tense up anywhere or do you feel your eyebrows raising?
I think the word holds alot of energy and attached meanings to different people depending on your upbringing and experiences in the world thus far.
I have to admit, I was skeptical of those who called themself "Shaman". Kinda like how anyone can ordain themselves online and suddenly be a Minister of any church they invented. I thought "Where's the authenticity?" You can't just choose to be a shaman...you have to have been chosen or born into the position.
But what if we change the word "shaman" and call it practicing the "Art of Shamism"....now we are getting closer I think.
I have always craved a "teacher". A "guru". A "guide".
There are things I know about myself and so much more that I don't know BUT my desire to work one on one with a spiritual companion has been strong since childhood.
Raised in the Catholic tradition I sought comfort and companionship in my statue of the virgin Mary. She was protector at night and she was who I prayed to when I prayed.
I was critical of my Catholic upbring early on...I hated the hypocrisy, judged the faith for building grand churches and not giving enough to the poor. The pomp and circumstance disgusted me rather than strengthen my faith. I was young mind you and interpreting this through a child's eye but I couldn't relate to what was going on and my journey to find something that resonated began.Now, don't misinterpret my misgivings about the church....I have reconciled my differences and find peace in many of the traditions and pagan origins of the catholic faith.
So now, I think I may explore my celtic heritage. It is a rich culture steeped in myth and magic and lore and has called to me for some time but I am yet to claim it.
The term for my new adventure will be "domestic shamanism". Yes, balancing family life with spiritual pursuits....
Journeying with ancestors amongst or between the dirty dishes and piles of laundry.
In peace, Tricia
Friday, July 2, 2010
Definition of groove : (noun)1. a long narrow tunnel
2. any channel or rut cut or worn in a surface
3. a habitual way of doing something; settled routine
( verb )1. to take great pleasure or satisfaction
to enjoy oneself
to be affected with pleasurable excitement
2. to react or interact harmoniously
Since I totally suck when it comes to routine, I think I prefer to view the word "groove" as a verb. I definitely lost my "groove" the past few weeks. The end of the school year ... which didn't end soon enough. And the end of our so-called 'routine"...a quick trip to Vancouver thrown in there...a few illnesses throughout the family...the onset of summer, only drippy and soggy and cloudy and the beginning of a full time wear me out, break me down job at the liquor store.
Yes, my groove will be temporarily interrupted as the new summer groove falls into place. Most people look forward to the easy, breezy, relaxed, sun, sand and salads of summer but for me it is a stressful dance to balance childcare, a full time job, friends and family....
So, my new groove will allow waaay less time here. Boo.
Always reminding myself to be gentle...this too shall pass. Embrace the now.
Peace out, Tricia
Monday, June 21, 2010
Friday, June 18, 2010
Isn't this a lovely story with incredible illustrations?
Ok, it has been almost entirely a youtube week....no time to sit and contemplate.
No time to be still and quiet while sitting in front of the computer.
And it's friday already...which is more like my tuesday cause i worked last night, again tonight and on saturday.
Weekends don't feel like weekends when you are working them. Mabe I will get lucky and get called in for a day shift on sat and still make it to the bbq....that would be nice....
with love, Tricia
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
Just a few minutes here to remind myself that we are all connected to the Universal Mother. That we are all embodiments of the Goddess and the Sacred Feminine. Reflections of the Divine.
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Sometimes you know without a doubt that you are exactly where you are suppose to be.
I had that intense affirmation as I sat amongst a drum circle, a visitor within a community, happily anticipating what was in store for the evening.
The "teacher" was a kind, compassionate, forgiving soul with a passion for music. Those who have sat next to me in a singing circle or who have recovered drums from my hands and replaced them with shakers, know that I am rhythmically challenged. That acknowledged I was a bit nervous about the "voice toning" aspect of the evening, that is, until we actually began the evening. All trepidation dissolved. Once again I was in the presence of a "teacher" who believed in the process and finding joy in the process, in taking the risk to try, in the journey not the destination.
He started out the evening getting everybody to stand and just step from one foot to the other until the whole room was entrained in this movement. That was the first sign, this was how my initial birthing From Within workshop got started as well. Entrainment is a powerful thing. Basically, getting into the same rhythm...the same current....it's chemistry, it's biology, it's nature. It's being pulled by the strongest force in the room....thus the relevance to birth. For a woman-centred birth she must be allowed to be the strongest force in the room around which everyone else becomes entrained. This must be taught in our culture today otherwise the caregiver (doctor/midwife) will be the strongest force around which the rest of the room becomes entrained. So there we were, stepping from side to side and you could feel the current, the energy, the pulse in the room. Then he added some sound (at which point the thinking brain steps in and it is harder to stay entrained unless you can shut off the thinking brain and resort back to instinct (again, like birth)) and from there the night was wonderful.
He talked about the cycles in music, in life, and how everything is just one big cyclical event and i was thinking how this might be a profound thought to some people but how in tune woman are or can be to these cycles because we are forced to live them whether we acknowledge that or not. It's one of the things that bothers me about our culture regarding menstruation and the pill and all the effort to make cycles shorter or non-existant....we loose touch with out natural rhythm and in doing so fail to see or feel the connection to nature, to the Mother Nature, to Mother Earth. It's so sad in many ways. But anyhow, I was there, listening and thinking about all the beautiful women in my life who honour their connection to cycles.
And then the chanting was so powerful for me in the moment that as I have said it moved me to tears. I knew I was where i was suppose to be. And I was so in the moment. That's what I love about chanting . Especially sanskrit, which means nothing to me but carries it's own energy just by the vibration the sound creates. Abnd everything else dissolves into that moment. Big sigh.
Empty your lungs. Let all your breathe out. Push it all the way out of your lungs.
Deep breathe in. Up through the diaghram, up through the chest, up, up, up and bog breathe out.
Synchronicity. Simple. Beautiful. It happens.
with love, Tricia
Saturday, June 12, 2010
By Gale Berkowitz
A landmark UCLA study suggests friendships between women are special. They shape who we are and who we are yet to be. They soothe our tumultuous inner world, fill the emotional gaps in our marriage, and help us remember who we really are. By the way, they may do even more.
Scientists now suspect that hanging out with our friends can actually counteract the kind of stomach-quivering stress most of us experience on a daily basis. A landmark UCLA study suggests that women respond to stress with a cascade of brain chemicals that cause us to make and maintain friendships with other women. It's a stunning find that has turned five decades of stress research---most of it on men---upside down.
"Until this study was published, scientists generally believed that when people experience stress, they trigger a hormonal cascade that revs the body to either stand and fight or flee as fast as possible," explains Laura Cousino Klein, Ph.D., now an Assistant Professor of Biobehavioral Health at Penn State University and one of the study's authors. "It's an ancient survival mechanism left over from the time we were chased across the planet by saber-toothed tigers.
Now the researchers suspect that women have a larger behavioral repertoire than just "fight or flight." "In fact," says Dr. Klein, "it seems that when the hormone oxytocin is released as part of the stress responses in a woman, it buffers the "fight or flight" response and encourages her to tend children and gather with other women instead.
When she actually engages in this tending or befriending, studies suggest that more oxytocin is released, which further counters stress and produces a calming effect. This calming response does not occur in men", says Dr. Klein, "because testosterone---which men produce in high levels when they're under stress---seems to reduce the effects of oxytocin. Estrogen", she adds, "seems to enhance it."
The discovery that women respond to stress differently than men was made in a classic "aha!" moment shared by two women scientists who were talking one day in a lab at UCLA. "There was this joke that when the women who worked in the lab were stressed, they came in, cleaned the lab, had coffee, and bonded", says Dr. Klein." When the men were stressed, they holed up somewhere on their own. I commented one day to fellow researcher Shelley Taylor that nearly 90% of the stress research is on males. I showed her the data from my lab, and the two of us knew instantly that we were onto something."
The women cleared their schedules and started meeting with one scientist after another from various research specialties. Very quickly, Drs. Klein and Taylor discovered that by not including women in stress research, scientists had made a huge mistake: The fact that women respond to stress differently than men has significant implications for our health. It may take some time for new studies to reveal all the ways that oxytocin encourages us to care for children and hang out with other women, but the "tend and befriend" notion developed by Drs. Klein and Taylor may explain why women consistently outlive men. Study after study has found that social ties reduce our risk of disease by lowering blood pressure, heart rate, and cholesterol.
"There's no doubt," says Dr. Klein, "that friends are helping us live." In one study, for example, researchers found that people who had no friends increased their risk of death over a 6-month period. In another study, thoseh who had the most friends over a 9-year period cut their risk of death by more than 60%. Friends are also helping us live better.
The famed Nurses' Health Study from Harvard Medical School found that the more friends women had, the less likely they were to develop physical impairments as they aged, and the more likely they were to be leading a joyful life. In fact, the results were so significant, the researchers concluded, that not having close friends or confidantes was as detrimental to your health as smoking or carrying extra weight!
And that's not all! When the researchers looked at how well the women functioned after the death of their spouse, they found that even in the face of this biggest stressor of all, those women who had a close friend confidante were more likely to survive the experience without any new physical impairments or permanent loss of vitality. Those without friends were not always so fortunate.
Yet if friends counter the stress that seems to swallow up so much of our life these days, if they keep us healthy and even add years to our life, why is it so hard to find time to be with them? That's a question that also troubles researcher Ruthellen Josselson, Ph.D., co-author of "Best Friends: The Pleasures and Perils of Girls' and Women's Friendships (Three Rivers Press, 1998)."Every time we get overly busy with work and family, the first thing we do is let go of friendships with other women," explains Dr. Josselson. "We push them right to the back burner. That's really a mistake because women are such a source of strength to each other. We nurture one another. And we need to have unpressured space in which we can do the special kind of talk that women do when they're with other women. It's a very healing experience."
Taylor, S. E., Klein, L.C., Lewis,B. P., Gruenewald, T. L., Gurung, R.A.R.,
& Updegraff, J. A. (2000).
"Female Responses to Stress: Tend and Befriend, Not Fight or
Flight",Psychological Review, 107(3), 41-429.
Thursday, June 10, 2010
Once again another joyous escape into the ecstatic pulse of the drumbeat.
I was moved to tears as the whole room vibrated and resonated with the pulse and beat of not only the guitar, drone, and drum but also of the power of chant. Tears...i fought them back. I was overcome with emotion, with feeling, with being alive, with getting in touch, with release.
Big sigh. All the air out. Blow it away. again. return to centre. pause. Exhale. Breathe in. deep. forceful out breathe. close your eyes. listen. repeat.
Ahhh, it has been a week. I wanted to melt right there and blubber and sob and let it out. If it were any other gathering I would have. I pictured the leader of the workshop as Pam (England, BFW) and I know if she were there she would have welcomed the tears, she would have known another layer had been peeled away...finally...she would have looked me straight in the eye and challenged me to go deeper, to get in touch, to get angry perhaps. But it was not the time or place. So I talked myself down, I told myself what i was feeling was only a story I was telling myself, that it wasn't the real story...that eveything was a story.....
The pulse, the beat, the rhythm, the unity in a group of strangers. The energy, the beauty, the symetry, the syncronicity, the heartbeat.....
The muck, the mudiness, the struggle, the hurt, the fear, the future.....disolved for but a moment.
Thank-you. More. More. More. Enough.
with love, Tricia
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Yep. right again. I used the word the. The mom. Not a mom...anyone can be a mom but in each family there is noone that can replace, duplicate, fill in the shoes (no matter how big, how small or how crappy) of the mom.
So we went as four moms sans enfants. With big purses filled with all kinds of chocolate, snack mix, fuzzy peaches and natural gummy things plus one smart cookie had a water bottle full of gin. We sat in the very last row...four seats...perfect.
And the movie...well, it was kinda enjoyable. There were some really good scenes in that flick.
Today was one of those days (again) where the scene with the "true confessions of mommyhood" (take a sip) rang true once again. It seems like it should be simple. I just need them to get up, get ready, and go to school. Not so easy. So we ended up in a stand off once again. This time with Chloe locked in the bathroom, not coming out, actually getting cozy in the bathtub. This after I chased her around the kitchen with a scary look on my face and the closest thing possible in my hand, a piece of wooden train track...and I thought "move faster,get motivated, get out the door". She didn't try to hurry up and catch her ride, she leisurly stood there packing her bag, listening to the horn honking (huge irritation) and didn't attempt to speed up. UGH. So frustrating and I snapped. And she ran to bathroom and wouldn't come out. She later transfered to her room.
Where is my all expense paid trip to Abudabu when I need one? With friends and a private bar?
There is no Abudabi in my future. Thank goddess the friend part makes up for that! And the private bar? Not so much, but there are clothing swaps and full moon singing circles and potlucks to make up for it and to dip into too much sangria and more. There are open ears and open hearts and reflective eyes. There are lots of hugs and open arms. There is alot of "how can I help or what do you need".....
It just doesn't take the the from in front of the word "mom"...I'm still the mom. Dammit some days.
And the days not over yet.
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
Last night the kids played outside till bedtime and I gave them a snack, helped them brush their teeth and Lola just crawled into bed and was asleep before I turned the light off. Astrid was a little more determined to stay up, so as she lay sprawled on the recliner, head on the footrest, the rest of her body laying across the seat and arms of the recliner looking like a cat....she tried to stay awake. I went in the kitchen for a moment, walked by a few minutes later and she was hanging there, cat-like, upside down in the chair, asleep. I moved her to her bed shortly there after and began to dig through the pile of dvd's.
I settled on The Jane Austen Book Club. I am so glad I did! It was one of those wonderful little movies that had me grinning the whole time. Yes, it was delightful.
I love that kinda easy to watch, feel good, chic flick. Although, I think even the guys could appreciate this one. It was just good.
I realised, not that it's a surprise to me or anything, that I have never read a Jane Austen novel.
I know, shame on me( as my Catholic mother would say, not that she's ever read on either).
I think I will choose one for my summer reading.
Any suggestions from out there?
I may just start with the first one that shows up at the thrift store....or I could be more specific and choose one and hunt it down at the second hand bookstore.
I havn't decided yet.
with love, Tricia
Monday, June 7, 2010
Not so much.
I am still on borrowed time whilst I sit here and type. (one handed I might add because I learned to type and breastfeed or hold a babe and thus the one handed typing thing)
So the meditation thing.....sweet story.
Yesterday I was bound to the usual routine of hunting and gathering the groceries for the week and Saige needed to clean the yoga studio. So off we went. She was in a good mood perhaps from reeling in a good haul of babysitting cash over the weekend. For whatever reason she decided to be uncharacteristically generous and bought me a blended coffee from Blendz. Then we started to drive and she cranked, I mean CRANKED the Lady Ga Ga on the stereo. She danced and sang in the passenger seat beside me and I could feel her exuberance like rays of sunshine.
It was loud. Real loud. I just drove. I didn't reach to turn it down. I didn't comment on how loud it was. I found myself meditating to Lady Ga Ga. I moved my shoulders up and down to the beat a few times, I might have sang along with a chorus or two but for the most part I just didn't try to change it. I just noticed my thoughts and my daughter enjoying herSELF and we drove home vibrating with the rhythm.
It was a good moment.
It is a small town though and I was wishing that I had been wearing a pair of dark sunglasses.
with love, Tricia
Saturday, June 5, 2010
Friday, June 4, 2010
Thursday, June 3, 2010
Hmmm...always interesting. I never peek ahead to see what the next four lines will be...
Wouldn't it be fun to copy some of these out on paper and start leaving them around the city for people to find? Not quite hidden between stones and mortar, but kinda....
with love, Tricia
Wednesday, June 2, 2010
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
I found this cool demo and wonderful art site....
I love the idea of the zendala...
I wanted to show you the one I did but, the batteries are dead on the camera and they have to charge before I can upload it.....
So, give it a try....I used a dvd that was sitting her beside me to start and a piece of blank printer paper...and a fine point sharpie.....
It is fun! And medatative!
I simply decided we would follow friends to the park to enjoy the sunshine and the whining and fighting began!
I can definitely see some days how it would be easier to have half the kids I have....
Oh, the stink eye and attitude from the Big Girls because I choose to zip over to the park so their sisters could enjoy some play time. The whining and complaining and effort to be miserable.
The worst part : the witnesses. Yep. It is at times like these that I would prefer to throw them all back into the van (whining, complaining,fighting) and drive home and LOCK MYSELF IN MY BEDROOM. Perhaps even enjoy a bit of a pity party over the lousy behaviour exhibited by my children...in public, no less. And mabe even stroll for awhile down that path of "where did I go wrong?"....and then eat some hidden lindt easter eggs....and get ready to emerge from my cocoon of denial. I said I would prefer to do this...what I did was resist the urge to throttle the two oldest kids, let the younger kids play (when they weren't being harassed by their older sisters) and stayed a few minutes longer than I might have if they had been cooperating. And I just kinda "noticed" the feelings that were coming up. In my head I was having a full on temper tantrum to match the full on teenage tantrums I was subjected to. Subjected...sounds victim-ish...it is...I was feeling that way...I just didn't respond that way...outwards.
Yep. Other moms at the park with their still "controlable" kids under the age of....7...or so. Most likely thinking to themselves that they will never let their kids behave like that...let alone in public. I've learned never to say "never"....there may always be a first time.
And really, are my on the "way to adulthood" kids not responsible for their own lousy behaviour by now....How long am I held responsible? Just wondering.
Things seemed to settled down once we were home but i am still searching the internet for an exchange program (minus the exchange) that I can send them on to experience a different culture. Preferably one without internet, cable, plumbing or readily available food. You know, something that would help them realise how good they've got it...even when forced to enjoy a few minutes in the sunshine at the park.
with love, Tricia
Monday, May 31, 2010
I would wipe her hands every now and again and she would continue on....
I just don't get riled up over melting, squishing, frozen blueberries if my child is happy.
But...the other moms were needing some therapy after witnessing that, I can tell you that.
Of course, some of them were actually wearing white and there were definitely some heels in the room.
Mabe that says something about my standards.....mabe it says something about our priorities as a society....you choose.
I am definitely suspicious of a very tidy house...you know the one....everything has it's place and it's ALWAYS in it. Always...even when you stop by unexpected....except, honestly...I don't know any of these people well enough to stop by unexpectedly.
A messy house is a sign of comfort...a sign of priorities....my missing sock pile.....ok, that's a bit much BUT my kids know the "magic" of mismatched socks...You do know they are magical when they aren't matched don't you?
Sunday, May 30, 2010
Saturday, May 29, 2010
This time I was biting my fingernails...I know, bad habit...that'll teach me not to bite them...ah, no, I've been biting them since I was five...my dad used to put black electrical tape on my fingers to discourage biting them...didn't work...my mom tried putting on this bitter tasting stuff...didn't work...It's habit and it's not on my list of things "to change about me"....(I would like skinnier thighs...but that's another story)...So, anyhow, crunch, gasp...look in mirror...gasp...the horror...my front tooth is chipped again. Seriously.
Last time it chipped...five months ago...yeah, that's right...the damn tooth didn't even last six months...it cost me 200.00 bucks out of pocket cause our dental won't cover that tooth for another two - five years....
But the alternative...hillbilly smile (not that there's anything wrong with that) but seriously!?!
Now, I'm not a very vain person...I really , truly, don't spend alot of time on personal grooming...although, I will admit that since my kids aren't sitting outside the shower in their carseats waiting for me to finish showering....that i do enjoy having a shower, conditioning my hair and even blowdrying it. And because I can, I sometimes take up to 30 mins to do all that from start to finish....it's been years coming though, trust me.
But, I'm not the mom with manicured nails (obviously, if I bite them) or polished toes...my toes are sore from wearing steel toed shoes at the liquor store (ouchy) and my make-up...non existant for the most part...I think my kids wear my make-up more than i do....why do i think that? Because i seem to break out in itchy watery eyes every time I wear eye stuff....yup, I think they've highjacked my make-up.
Speaking of make-up...it's my ultimate useless splurge sometimes...the splurge because...i'm a woman, I'm old, (mature-ish) and I might as well try to look my best now...cause this is my prime...apparently. I only buy it sometimes, and not that often and I usually don't know what to do with it once I get it home...but I feel grown up.
So, back to my chipped tooth. It just reminded me how low on the priority list my vanity is until it's my front tooth...then I want it fixed...no matter what the cost. Seriously.
It's got me thinking...I might even shave my legs.
Friday, May 28, 2010
My newest armchair reading material is the book The Wonder of Girls by Michael Gurian. Here is a good article http://www.michaelgurian.com/seattle-p-i.html . It is never too late on the path of parenting to explore new therories and put good wisdom to the test...so, I'll let you know how that goes....Either I read the book or it ends up on my shelf with all the other parenting books that just seem like good ideas.
Have a great weekend!
with love, Tricia
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Oh my...that is a looong web address link...I hope it works...
If it does, it is a link to Mango Mama's original web pages...there is some interesting stuff there. In fact, alot of really good stuff.
It reminded me too that this web stuff lasts as a testament to a "moment in time"... it will be here in the bowels of the cyberworld long after we are!
Mango Mama started a blog a few years ago but it has not been updated lately. There are a few gems here as well and for me...it completes the story. My obsession with rise and fall of the Perfect Natural Mother can be put to rest. I'll still search out "great women" bloggers and whatnots to inspire me, help me raise my bar (of standards,not drinks), encourage me to be creative, and to love this life!
I must admit though...my greatest inspiration...it's you! Yes, you! The friend/mother/sister/woman who has stopped by here to lurk, to browse, to compare, to check in, to show interest, to be present...it is you who inspire me. I love that the world is at our fingertips each waking day...and what a big, wide world it is...but it is the tiny cubby holes and the prescence of good people that really make me want to sing (even though I sing badly)! The beautiful people in my life have brought more beautiful people and I hope that will continue and I am grateful for this! It is the simple woman, the mother who will bake a friend a casserole when she can't bake one for herself, the woman who says.."let's share a bottle of wine or if that's too ambitious...let's just steal a moment here together", the woman who's home you never feel like a stranger in...in fact you rarely knock (except to give her time to put a bra on or not), the woman who gives you a hug upon each greeting and in her arms your heart expands....cause there's just not enough hugging going on out there.... because we are all sisters and we're enough! It's the little things we do and do for each other that inspire greatness.
So, Mango Mama's blog http://jennifervanlaanen.blogspot.com/
Happy full moon!
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Ever heard of or remember Mango Mama? She was around on the net in the nineties...before blogs, before facebook, before twitter...before I was handy with a computer. I was introduced to her through a friend who was good at surfing the net and finding useful or interesting information.
Mango Mama was the poster mom for natural parenting. In fact, she and her family were pictured on the cover of the book Primal Parenting written by Hygeia Halfmoon. She was radical, she was opinionated, she was Mother Superior of Attachment parenting. And then, as life continued on, as it always does, she disappeared. Well, her web prescence did anyways. Like I mentioned, I was introduced to her through one of her followers (kinda cultish, but that's what it's called, right?) and I didn't really notice when she wasn't there anymore....but years later, I remember someone saying "Remember mango mama?" and it was then that I reconnected with the net to search out what had become of mango mama.....and well, I was surprised.
It seems mango mama kinda snapped. She reached her tipping point, it had been teetering for some time and when she fell, she fell hard. It would be like Soulemama abandoning her handmade life, take up cigarette smoking, eat process foods only and work at (gasp) Walmart.
Mango Mama, the organic, no mother substitutes, unschooling, militant breastfeeding, family bed advocate, fruitarian had an afair with a married man, put her kids in school, left her husband, abandoned her children and got a job.
She came back on line to years ago to explain what happened. I am fascinated by her story I think because I was in awe of Mango Mama way back when, and I guess her humaness is reassuring cause I certainly wasn't adding up when compared to Mango Mama. I don't take delight in her fall...I feel deep compassion and empathy for what she must have been going through. And it reminds me of the moments when i have reached the breaking point. When the thankless, underpaid, under-appreciated job of Motherhood almost swalled me whole. Somehow, I was able to belly crawl back up to the light and reconnect with what it's all about. Remind myself that Motherhood is a spiritual journey for me, not in the flaky, it's all bliss kinda way but in the nitty gritty, where the hell is my centre, my minivan is my temple, find the gems, remember it's about the journey not the destination, pull up my boot straps and accept myself for who I am, Mother and all in THIS moment.
And reach for balance....Mango Mama now wants you to know that she wasn't balanced. She urges you, pleads with you to reach for balance. Easier said than done but the old adage "When mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy." is pretty true. We can't do it all, nor should we have to. Finding my tribe has been key to rejuivanating myself as a woman first, then a mother...or is it the other way around?
And what next, what happens when my tribe stays the same but I am heading towards transition? What then? I'll keep you posted.
And so, this is a cautionary tale in part. Be good to yourself. You deserve it. You're worth it. your children will thank you for taking care of your wants/needs/desires.
There are many resources out there to inspire you...
http://www.karenmaezenmiller.com/ of Cheerio Road
http://www.kindredcommunity.com/ interesting site, good articles, very interesting
Book The Mother's Guide to Self Renewal by Trudeau
Monday, May 24, 2010
This ad was shared with me from another BFW mentor. Seems like we have a long way to go over here in North America as far as natural birth goes.....
Compare this to the images we see on t.v., magazines, movies. Wow!
I love the sibling involvement here too.
The Cracked Water Pot
A water bearer in India had two large pots,
one hung on each end of a pole which he carried
across his neck. One of the pots had a crack
in it, and while the other pot was perfect and always
delivered a full portion of water at the end
of the long walk from the stream to the
master's house. The cracked pot arrived only half full.
For a full two years this went on daily, with the bearer delivering only one and a half pots full of water in his master's house.
Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments, perfect to the end for which it was made.
But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it was able to accomplish only half of what it had been made to do.
After two years of what it perceived to be a bitter failure, it
spoke to the water bearer one day by the stream.
"I am ashamed of myself, and I want to apologize to you."
Why?" asked the bearer.
"What are you ashamed of?"
"I have been able, for these past two years, to deliver only half my load because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your master's house.
Because of my flaws, you have to do all of this work, and you don't get full value from your efforts," the pot said.
The water bearer felt sorry for the old cracked pot, and in his compassion he said, "As we return to the master's house, I want you to notice the beautiful flowers along the path."
Indeed, as they went up the hill, the old cracked pot took notice of the sun warming the beautiful wild flowers on the side of the path, and this cheered it some.
But at the end of the trail, it still felt bad because it had leaked out half its load, and so again it apologized to the bearer for its failure.
The bearer said to the pot, "Did you notice that there were flowers only on your side of your path, but not on the other pot's side?
That's because I have always known about your flaw, and I took advantage of it. I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back from the stream, you've watered them.
For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers
to decorate my master's table. Without you being just the way you are, he would not have this beauty to grace his house."
Each of us has our own unique flaws. We're all cracked pots.
But it's the cracks and flaws we each have that make our lives together so very interesting and rewarding. You've just got to take each person for what they are, and look for the good in them. There is a lot of good out there.
Isn't this so true in Motherhood as well? There are so many standards to live up to, or not. So many Soulemama's and Farmmama's and Perfectmama's and Livingsimplymama's and Ecomama's and Organichighpriestessmama's and Workinforalivinmama's and Followingmyblissmama's and Yummymama's and Mainstreammama's and Hipmama's and Spiritualysuperiormama's.....it's hard to be a DoingthebestIcanmama since the women's liberation movement. Not that I don't support equal rights or women's rights or women's right to equal liberation, I do. Sometimes it seems that as far as Motherhood goes anyways, there isn't really equal....the Mom will always be the Mom and being the mom requires a different sort of sacrifice, a different sort of surrender, a different meaning to the term "parenting". It's good to have those role models or "standards" to inspire us and help us set new goals and I believe it helps us find our tribe as Mothers. We align ourselves with others that think like us, live like us, parent like we do...it re enforces our values and sense that we are living well or doing a good job.
So, the only downside to all those role models and examples out there would be when we judge ourselves or others based on idealism's. Often when we are judging someone else it's not about them...in fact, it's never about them...it's about ourselves. Always. And so, ramble ramble, back to the cracked pot....my kids will always have something from their childhood to discuss with a therapist....but they are my flowers, each different and unique. And mabe one day they will appreciate my weaknesses as "gifts" that helped shape them into the wild and crazy flowers that they are!
Even if they never have socks that match and a billion others to sift through.
with love, Tricia
I love drumming...we started the evening off on the right beat with an energizing drum circle lead by the Great Bobby Bovenzi of Nankama (www.nankama.com) a leader in African and world drumming and a good friend. There's something magical about a room of people, children crawling around the circle, babies on laps, friends and strangers mingled together creating a pulse, a beat, a rhythm, a VIBE! It was great! It reminded me how much i love to be a part of that beat, even though this pale faced girl from Northern Ontario can hardly keep a beat....all is forgiven in the drum circle and when I loose the rhythm as I inevitebly do...I know to come back to the heartbeat...boom, pause, boom, pause....wait, listen....boom, pause, boom....
There is a book out called When the Women Were Drummers by Layne Redmond which I have yet to get my hands on but it tells of the history of women and drumming. I will post the video next. I have also been inspired by Nikiah of Redmoonkeeper (www.redmoonkeeper.com) who offers Red moon drum making workshops in Vancouver.....I'd love to attend.
We don't need the straight line to nowhere. We need the circle to hold us.
We don't need the solitary confinement of modern life; we need the embrace of community.
We can't lose sight, lose faith, courage, forget who we are. We have to remind each other.
We don't need to be warriors. We can be dancers.
~Karen Andes A woman's Book of Power
And so the rest of the night...we danced like noone was watching.....
with love, Tricia
Saturday, May 22, 2010
The four lines read as follows:
Thrice now, thrice again and thrice before retiring.
Now, have you given thought as what it is you require clarity on? After the sixth day the reader may have discovered a greater sense of awareness and focus. Therefore any decisions to be made can now be acted upon.
What has been puzzling you lately?
Friday, May 21, 2010
Here are a few links for online resources and more fun labyrinth stuff...
Again...if the links don't work...it's me...not you...try google
Happy Meditative friday!
Thursday, May 20, 2010
Already....how time passes. So, yesterdays four lines were interesting. Let's see what today brings. One moment while I read the page....
Today's four lines are as follows:
THAN JOIN WITH
Thrice now, thrice at noon and thrice before bed....
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
I did. We'll check back in six days to compare notes. For today here is the four lines :
I will probably have to wikipedia the word "mummer".
Pause....I looked it up...it has something to do with old english folk plays usually performed in the streets...but you should look it up for yourself.
Well, I was all dressed up ( I had decided to wear my new thrift store score...a beautiful A-line green skirt and my new jewellery from Mother's Day) and had no place to go...so I went.
So, here is a little bit about this group...www.okanaganbreastfeedingcoalition.org is the website and the goal here is to promote and advocate for natural, normal, healthy breastfeeding communities. Here's something that made my jaw drop.....did you know that there are actually people, communities, people who think breastfeeding in a public pool is a health concern?!?
I was shocked...I guess because I have been a breastfeeding mom for 16 years (oh, gasp, I know, hold on) and never considered this a possibility....a health concern? I consider the urine and feces that might be in the pool more of a health concern or of a concern....I never considered breast milk. Admittedly, I do have my own biases about public pools, bathing suites and public pools...and I basically consider the hot tub people soup (ewwww) BUT my kids LOVE the pool and I have been known to "suck it up" and go in from time to time. (Generally I wait till they are old enough to go in lessons alone, ahem)
So, for you breastfeeding moms out there...you may be interested in this document that explains what it means to have a "breastfeeding friendly" community centre. www.okanaganbreastfeedingcoalition.org/pdf/CommunityCentreProposal.pdf if this link doesn't work...it's not you, it's me. Try googling it.
As a woman, this stuns me that it is even an issue anywhere...but, sadly it is. The healing properties of breast milk are astounding ....
Anyways, this whole issue, the fact that it even is and issue led me back to the natural age of weaning...cause, yeah, Astrid is not a quitter. A good friend once brought some info to my attention about the natural age of weaning for our closest mamal relatives...gorillas and chimpanzees...this is an interesting article...www.kathydettwyler.org/detwean.html again, if you can't find it, it's ,me not you...google natural age of weaning and her article will appear.
So, again...more snippets....breastfeeding is still a part of my life....
Oh, we have so far to go....sometimes I wonder about the whole "women's movement" thing...we are so far removed from our true nature it seems....but that is another post.
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
I am an admitted thrift store junkie. I have always loved treasure hunting. Possibly because I had an active imagination as a child. I can remember a day from my childhood quite clearly...we were on St. Josephs Island just outside my home town of Sault Ste Marie. I don't remember why we had stopped, I think there may have been a wild apple tree my mom wanted to forage...but on the property was an abandoned house. I was aching to go in and explore....my imagination was running rampant with the possibilities of the treasures left behind. I'm not talking gold and silver and jewels....the treaure would be the odds and ends...the pieces of the past that would reveil something about the story the people that had once lived there. But I wasn't allowed anywhere near the old house. I will always wonder.
I also loved playing in my grandparents basement as a child. It was an old house and had been my grandfather's house which he was rumered to have purchased from him for $1.00. The basement was cool and damp and the walls were stone or perhaps concrete. Grandpa had his tools down there and there were things we not suppose to get into. It had a low ceiling and we were watchful for spiders. i remember their old ringer washing mashine....
And then there was the basement of my other grandparents house...we weren't invited to play down there. But, one day, I was a bit older...in fact I think I was a young adult with a child of my own and was home for a visit...and the door was open to the basement. I asked if i could see what was down there and my uncle obliged. It was full of stuff. Not neat and organized like my other grandparents basement but II was sure there were treasures there. I emerged from the basement with an old bean pot....grandpa said it was his grams...which means it is my great, great grams and that he remembered it sitting atop the stove when he was a kid. It sits on my counter today with my wooden spoons and other utensils tucked into it. It has a small chip around the lip...but...my grandpa remembered it sitting atop my great, great grams stove.
And so, recently I noticed on mondays that it is "pick your discount" day at the Salvation Army thrift stores!!! Hooray! They have a little basket waiting under the counter and after they've rung in your purchase...half price items included...you dip your hand into the basket and pull out a little folded piece of paper that when opened gives you a discount of anywhere between 10%,15%,20%,or 25%. I have been pretty lucky so far getting a good discount.
So, what I found yesterday may interest you. It is a little book I almost didn't buy because I didn't need it....
But, I bought it and it is so cool. It is called the Oculatum and apparently it is a book compiled of wisdom collected after a great fire in the city of London the year 1666. Originally passed down through word of mouth, The Oculatum became a collection of wisdom that might be read in time of need. It has no beginning, no end, no middle. It may be opened from the front or the back, the reader decides which is the top or bottom of the page.
Instructions : It is suggested that the four-line phrase that comes into view be read six times,
silently or in voice. Repeat this action three times during the day...The following day the process is repeated for the next page and so on for a six day period. It is of ne consequence for the reader to remember, understand, or comprehend the phrase; it matters only that it be read. For it should be upon the completion of the sixth day that the reader may discover a greater sense of focus and awareness. Any decisions to be made can now be acted upon. If the reader desires, the process may be repeated in the same section or in any other as described above.
The Oculatum : may offer clarity, strength, and awareness for the attentive reader in his or her daily life.
AND THE CALM
So, this is the phrase you must say six times today...write it on a piece of paper....tuck it into your pocket.......three times right now, again around noon, and thrice at bedtime.
Monday, May 17, 2010
planting two placentas
painting my belly cast from my last
losing 30 pounds
Things I have been doing :
potting vegetables and flowers for this season
visiting with family and relatives
driving in circles around town
Things I hope to do soon :
spend 10 mins on the eliptical
undo the 10 mins with a piece of birthday cake
use the new mini watercolour set
1 small tub of ricotta cheese
1 package of oven ready cannelloni
This is an easy-peasy, crowd pleaser that takes very little effort.
First, mix ricotta and egg in big bowl. Sprinkle in some italian seasoning.
Next open a jar of tomato sauce or pasta sauce and spread over bottom of baking dish. I use the next size up from 9 x 13....then using a butter knife stuff the cannelloni and place in baking dish on top of the sauce. Then cover with more tomato sauce (you can add a bit of water to thin it out) and cover dish with tinfoil. Bake at 400 for 45 min. Then take out and top with cheese and bake again for 15 min (no tinfoil). Let sit for 5 min or so. Enjoy! Some garlic toast and a garden salad complete the meal.
Sunday, May 16, 2010
Here's a snippet from my paying job at the gov't liquor store....paying as oppose to "unpaid" work, which I have been doing for 16 years now and will continue to do for many more....ah, a woman's work....
So, anyhow, I had the most surreal experience cashiering the other day...the cab driver in town that seconds as an Elvis impersonator (at least I think he's an impersonator) was in my line up....not unusual...what was unusual was the way he seemed preoccupied as I was ringing through his purchase. I told him what he owed and it was at that moment that I noticed why he was preoccupied...his wallet was stuck in the pocket of his jeans and he was trying desperately to get it out. He was standing there, Elvis side burns and all kinda jumping on the spot and trying to retrieve his very snug wallet. "my jeans are too tight, I can't get it out." he said to my straight face. Paid by the hour, I patiently waited without much commentary other than "hmph." while he succeeded in dislodging his bulging wallet from his front pant pocket. It was quite a sight.
At least I didn't have the hysterical cat lady that had come through the busy line ups earlier in the day....I don't think I would have been able to keep a straight face for that one....
Seriously, she came in wahooing and sobbing and I was sure it was a domestic violence issue and was glad to see a supervisor approach her and ask if everything was ok....obviously it was not...but he then came up to the front and whispered to me in a serious tone that she had to put her cat down. I know, I know, that's sad and I seem a bit cold hearted here but it was just so very "liquor store regular" type behavior....yeah, we get some pretty wild ones. Anyhoo, poor gal. Thank the universe she didn't go through my line up...I would definitely have broken out in an inappropriate smile. Not cause it was funny.....it was just very liquor store-esque.
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