The transition into motherhood has not been an easy one for me.
Deep grief over the loss of my own mother bubbled up from places I didn’t even know existed.
Places deep down in my heart and body that I thought had been cleared of grief. Places that I thought were soft and open and ready to take on this new challenge. Places that I had already worked so hard to heal.
The newborn days were glorious. A necessary reprieve for what was about to come. For me, the newborn days were what dreams are made of. Me. My little one. Snuggled up on our cozy couch for hours on end. Basking in the divinity of newness and hope.
But at 5 months, when he started crawling fast and furious, I knew I was witnessing my new guru in action. A fearless little dude who runs gleefully towards crashing waves, speeding cars, and was “dropping-in” at the skatepark with the teenagers before his second birthday.
My giant unhealed fear of losing a loved one.
2.5+ years of night...
A while back, I was talking to a friend about how to let go of the need to control life which is often easier said then done - especially when we are dealing with stress. And perhaps even more so when dealing with the stress of loss.
We want to hang on to our lives as they once were, and at the same time, control what will happen next. This is a stress reaction from our 'reptile brain' - that old-school part of our brain that thinks it is responsible for keeping us safe. Back when we were cavewomen on the constant brink of death for any number of reasons, change often equated to death.
Thankfully, it isn't like that anymore.
But our reptile brain hasn't learned that yet. In our contemporary world, the "fight, flight, or freeze" auto-response leaves us trying to trying to control life.
The problem with this is (as you know) change is the only constant and therefore impossible to control. So as we try to control our life (and fail) we only add more stress. And,...
When you are grieving, sleep is often a big problem.
Today I'm going to share with you the one practice that I do (almost) everyday before bed. Even on days where my posture practice or my meditation practice go out the window, this one sticks because it's SO simple. And, it works.
Right before I go to bed, I take 2 minutes to massage my feet with oil. I usually just use coconut oil (because it's there) but I sometimes add in other essential oils as well.
This simple practice, ends my day with a small pause, a dose of self love, and a deep sense of grounding. It helps bring my energy out of my busy mind, so I can set myself up for a good night's sleep.
I invite you to give it a try. If it feels right, try it for at least 21 days to set it up as a new healthy habit.
Sweet dreams and LOVE,
The other day I had the great honour of being interview by Chrissy Anne Hollis for her weekly video series that features women out there trailblazing the new grief paradigm.
She made me feel so comfortable that I pretty much shared everything. The good, the bad, the ugly and everything in-between.
I shared about what it was like to tell the person I loved most in the world that he was dying.
I shared what it was like to need my mom so bad but not have any idea where she was.
I shared about my mom's drug addiction and the time she offered me a crack-pipe. I declined, btw.
I shared how incredibly alone I felt in the aftermath of my boyfriend and mom's death.
I shared my abandonment issues and what it's like to be a child of suicide.
I shared my healing journey and how I reclaimed my life.
I shared it all with the hope that you would see bits of yourself in my words and feel less alone.
I truly believe that if I...
I knew she was dead before they told me. Call it the unbreakable bond between mother and daughter. Call it intuition. Call it fear or otherwise…All I know is, I knew.
Growing up, my mom was the textbook definition of a soccer mom. She was that mom with the mini-van and the cupcakes. The one who sewed all of our costumes (and our friend’s costumes) and never missed a P.T.A meeting.
She filled our proverbial cup first. She deserved to fill her own. But she didn’t know it.
She had long silky dark hair and black eyes that looked at me with both deep love and deep hurt. Her eyes held secrets that sometimes bubbled up in gentle fits of rage.
She was beautiful. But she didn’t see it.
She was shy and had a certain coyness that perhaps stemmed from childhood trauma, deep-seated limiting beliefs and an unmet need to feel like she belonged.
The truth is, she did belong. With me. With us. But she didn’t feel it.
My mother was...
Because so much of your life (including how you grieve) is determined by your unconscious mind, it is imperative that you get it on board with your healing.
In this gentle and nurturing class, I lovingly use repetitive mantra to support the unconscious mind in relaxing.
When practiced regularly, you will experience a deeper feeling of inner peace across all aspects of your life - because when you relax yourself, you heal yourself.
I'm here to show you how.
You'll find this brand new Yoga for Grief class in the link below.
We made it home after an epic trip that involved a two-year-old meltdown that shut down the airport security line and a bathroom escape that had me abandon our luggage and run through the airport with my pants down; but, we’re here, and it feels good to settle back in to our Santa Barbara home. I took a little time to manage the big transition and I thank you for your patience.
When I was back on Vancouver Island, I filmed several more videos including a full Yoga for Grief Program for DoYogaWithMe.com. More on that later…
But for now, I’d like to share a helpful tip from the Yoga for Grief program.
Grief healing is a tricky beast and there is no real ‘cure’ other than moving through it and integrating as you go, but there are things you can do to help. Which brings me to...
The 4 A’s of Grief Healing:
1. Awareness: This means bringing in an awareness of your grief. It means noticing where and how it is affecting you - and doing so with a...
This weekend, I went to the Canada Day celebration in my hometown.
It was a sweet little island festival featuring Elvis, Dolly and Patsy impersonators. It doesn't get much better than that!
The festival is held at "The Flats" - a flat grassy piece of land down by the river dabbled with campsites and little buildings for cooking, etc.
For as long as I can remember, I've been going there, helping set up various town events.
My papa made the structures.
My nana cooked the food.
My mom painted the signs.
My dad competed in the events.
My cousins, brother and I ran freely, all jacked up on cotton candy and LOVE.
These events are imprinted in the very fabric of my being.
The smells. The sounds. The sights. The quality of the air against my skin.
They all elicit deep memories of a happy childhood and a devoted family surrounded by a tight knit and supportive community.
The ‘before shot’.
Before addiction rampaged through. Before illness. And divorce. And death....
Chances are, if you’re grieving, you’ve heard the saying “you’ve got to feel it to heal it.” The problem is, feeling it can be terrifying.
Last night in my free Facebook group Healing Grief Holistically, I led a meditation class called Relax your Emotional Body that addressed this head on.
We focussed on becoming aware of and allowing our uncomfortable emotions so we could invite in healing.
And, even though I prefaced the meditation by saying it would be a loving and safe experience, participants were still scared. They said things like, “I’m afraid to allow my emotions. I’m afraid if I do, they’ll consume me or cannibalize me.”
I get it. I’ve been there and allowing your emotions can definitely feel scary. Which is why this is even more important.
One of my favorite quotes comes from Carl Jung. It says, “what we resist persists.” In this context, it means that when we resist...
Hi from Canada - eh! ;)
About a month ago we made a semi-spontaneous decision to spend the summer in my hometown on Vancouver Island. I've been homesick pretty much the entire time we've lived in Santa Barbara and a series of things came together to make it possible, so we just decided to go for it.
I'm beyond happy to be here and settle in for while.
That said, all the change has left me feeling a little overwhelmed and being 'home' has stirred some grief up to the surface.
Cue the grounding exercises.
When I notice myself feeling anxious, overwhelmed or unsettled, my go-to practice is grounding. With this, I’m always amazed at how simple it can be to bring myself back to center.
A few simple things to ground your energy:
Receive tips, tools and inspiration to find inner peace - even when you're grieving.