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Stepping into ourselves, we settle into our purpose, which allows our gifts to blossom, be seen, and flourish. -Elizabeth

For the past few months, I have been spending a lot of time assessing, losing myself, wandering different planes, and have ended up mostly confused. I have found myself asking myself what the F’ is going on almost every day. I felt like I entered a vortex. During these times, I hole up and want nothing more than to stay in my sacred space. Last night my husband came home and said, “Beth you created an ashram. What goddess are you honoring tonight or is it just the light?” Mostly, all of it, goddesses and all.

When you begin to step further into yourself and accept your gifts, you settle into your purpose. You re-organize yourself and life to begin to share those gifts. Before any of that can happen, you have to accept your gifts for real. You have to own them. This is what I realized about myself. I have been afraid and uncomfortable with some of my gifts. As a child I was mostly scared of my psychic intuition and kept it hidden. My husband says that I scare him because I know exactly what he’s thinking without him saying anything.

Once we feel safe, comfortable, and settle into who we are, I believe that we then flourish and blossom.

I have been assessing what direction I am heading as well as where I am putting my efforts. I am notorious for adding too much to my schedule. In the spirit of the autumn and coming cold months, I am desiring simplicity big time. I have decided to move my blog to my main site www.sisterhawk.com. You can read all of my new blog posts from there going forward. For a short time, I will post a link to all new blog posts here for you to be redirected to the other site.

Thank you for being part of this blog space, and I look forward to sharing more at www.sisterhawk.com.

My deepest blessings and gratitude,

Elizabeth

Motherhood=Surrender

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Motherhood is teaching me sweet sweet surrender in every moment. What a lesson in impermanence. Where there is growth, there is letting go while trying to hold on.

Motherhood is teaching me surrender. Everyday as my daughter grows, transforms, and changes instantly, I am faced with impermanence. The sacred lesson of the divine feminine is that of surrender. As women, we learn the subtleties of letting go when we give birth, love, raise children, and as our bodies transform with every cycle of the moon. We intimately know the workings of the divine feminine.

Indira has taught me surrender. She’s the greatest teacher as every child is. My daughter’s condition Tuberous Sclerosis Complex has also taught me surrender. Honestly, it would be easy for me to worry every minute of the day about Indira– worry if she is going to have a seizure, or suddenly regress, or start to have behavioral issues, or grow skin lesions on her beautiful face, or be diagnosed with Autism. Yes, that is all possible. I worry she will have a seizure in the middle of the night, or when I am not near her. It’s part of being her mother and a mother. You worry. You cry. You laugh. You practice patience. You let go of trying to control. I surrender to the moment. The moments that are incredible, beautiful, and sweet as well as completely uncomfortable and incredibly challenging.

I feel so deeply that when we allow ourselves to surrender we create space for the present moment to unfold. We allow it to be all that it can be and possibly more.

P.S. Today, I am grateful and feel blessed that my daughter is miraculously beating all the odds. She’s doing well, and is seizure free. She’s smart and engaged in all of life. She’s happy.  I’ll pray for that daily. Blessed be.

What do you want?

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What do you want? Have you ever been asked that question? And, sat there thinking for like hours about what is you really want.

The answer is there. It is not what anyone else wants for you. It is not what your parents, friends, ancestors, and or advisors want for you. It is what YOU want.

It is a question that goes straight to your gut and goes straight to your jugular (as my writing teacher used to say).

We all are conditioned into an answer of what others may have projected onto us starting at birth, and usually this is not what we want. I can see how my wants for Indira may not at all be what she wants in the future.

When I am asked this question I am always stunned, and sometimes have no idea what to say. Why? Because, most of us don’t get asked this question very often. So, when I was asked recently I paused. I had to get clear and connected to hear exactly what it is that I want. Sometimes, it’s unattainable in the moment. Like right now, I want a beach vacation with a book, my journal, palm trees, and crystal clear waters a la Costa Rica.

What do you want? Listen to that deep, quiet voice that rises out of the depths of your core-self. It has something to say.

Clean Slates

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This post is all about clean slates.  In May of 2012, I started a book. I wrote 35 pages and I hadn’t opened it since. It has taken me three years to open the file. Something happened that I couldn’t explain, and so I left it unopened sitting there in my documents. I had started it after I had finished teaching special education. I was entirely convinced that I’d write about the unjust, f’d up educational system and how teaching was where I learned zen meditation.

When, I opened this story again three days ago all I did was cry. I sat there and cried. I re-read some of the stories about the kids I taught and my heart was broken all over again. I re-read about the anger, frustration, and the unbelievable that happened on a daily basis. And, I re-read about the love–the love of teaching, and love for my students.

Ready to write again, I sat down and tried to write. I added only one sentence and stopped. Most of what I write comes from a place that I can’t describe. Words are gifted to me simply to be shared. I have no other purpose in my writing, except to share this gift. I sat there staring at my screen asking, “What am I supposed to share? Where are the words?”

I get to start over with a clean slate. Clean slates are blessings and gateways into possibility.

Sometimes, we need to surrender, be brave and let go of our ideas, beliefs, fears, friendships/relationships, patterns, excuses, and anything that’s holding us back. When we wipe the slate clean, we are given new energy to create a new life, and a new story (including double rainbows).

Actualize your Purpose

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Aha moments are like finding the perfect quartz crystal buried in the dirt. They illuminate the path.

We all have gifts to offer. We all have a divine purpose. Yet, sometimes we wander aimlessly or clearly in the wrong direction until we get there, or we don’t recognize what gifts we do have. Lately, I have been feeling less than inspired, and trying to figure out why. It hit me. I missed teaching. I missed being a teacher. I missed having a class. I missed engaging. My purpose is to teach, and when I am not actively teaching for awhile, I start to miss it, and feel without purpose.  My classroom and students have changed, because I no longer have four walls and desks in front of me, but a 17-month old who is my teacher and most important student. So, I am still looking for my next classroom and waiting to meet new students.

How do you discover your divine purpose?

I look at our divine purpose as the one thing that you must do in life. It is the illuminating spark that keeps you interested, motivated, inspired, and devoted.

Actualize your PURPOSE!

1. Make a list, answering these questions: What do you do that wows people? What do you love doing? What do you dream about? What keeps you interested, motivated, inspired, and devoted? If you don’t have the answers to any of these questions, the answers will show themselves through discovery and diving into your inner-world.

2. Do your answers complement your current situation? If not, how can you make changes to your life? Research. Find out what it may take.

3. Write a vision of the perfect scenario. Make it feel real. Make it feel dreamy. Fall in love with your vision.

4. Make a plan that outlines goals, deadlines, and how you are going to meet your goals. This is the action packed part. This is where you can actualize your purpose.

5. Let it all sink into your being.

 

Relaxing into the Back Body

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A group of monastic sisters sit eating. Their backs are hunched over, bodies caved in, hearts protected, and heads bowed quietly eating. Their backs covered in energetic armor.

Our back body and spine tell a story. What does their story tell—devotion, protection, shame, or obedience? What does our back body and spine say about our experience? Are we aware of what we hold in our armor?

We experience life through our front body as we engage with our world through our sense organs, while our back body responds to every one of these encounters. Energetically, we undulate between our front and back body balancing in the core of our being—our spine.

Our spine is our divine channel. When we relax into our spine we open the energetic channels of our entire being.

Practices for relaxing into back body:

  1. Svanasana: Resting on your back in svanasana begin to pay attention to your back body. Bring your awareness to the back of the head, neck, shoulders, back of the arms, spine, whole of the back, back of the knees, legs, ankles and heels. Once you get to the feet bring the energy back up through the spine. Focus on each vertebrae starting at the base of your spine from the sacrum and moving up towards to the back of your head. And, then rest for 10 minutes or longer.
  2. Elongate the spine vertebrae by vertebrae. You can do this through a series of asanas focusing on extending the spinal column. My suggested asanas are uttanasana, paschimottanasana, virasana with arm variations specifically urdhva hasta and baddhanguliyasana, sirsasana (5-minutes), sarvangasana (5-minutes). Please only attempt inversions if you have a dedicated inversion practice and can maintain alignment and stamina in those asanas. To rest into your back body more deeply, I recommend practicing restorative asanas like supta badha konasana and supta virasana.
  3. Use essential oils to awaken your spine, such as frankincense, wild orange, lavender, or fir.
  4. In meditation visualize your spine being an open channel reaching through the earth and up through the crown and beyond.
  5. Express the story of your back body. Are you protecting your heart so fiercely that you have built up energetic armor? Do you experience back pain from past trauma? Do you resist opening your back?
  6. Lay in the grass! Rest into the earth!

 

 

 

 

Body as a Sanctuary

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“The yogi never neglects or mortifies the body or the mind, but cherishes both. To him the body is not an impediment to his spiritual liberation nor is it the cause of its fall, but is an instrument of attainment. He seeks a body as a thunderbolt, healthy and free from suffering so as to dedicate it in the service of the Lord for which it is intended.” -BKS Iyengar, Light on Yoga.

 Three-years ago, I didn’t feel confident and felt disconnected. I was in a new relationship with my now partner, and in that ambiguous stage of fear and uncertainty. I began to compare myself to a lot of voluptuous women. I was daydreaming of what it would actually be like to have curves, and actually be voluptuous. I was thinking of those old Vargas girls. I always thought of them as deeply feminine, and had wished I had that body type. One night at 1:30am I was curious about breast implants, and started doing all of this research. Luckily, I was incredibly horrified at what I found out. In the middle of my in-depth research my cup of almond milk, ghee, cardamom, and cinnamon spills all over my computer. My computer was covered in my tea concoction. I freak out, and laugh because clearly I needed to stop the madness. The divine has a sense of humor at times. I bring my computer to the Apple store and the Mac Genius dude opens my computer and looks at my computer very confused. Ghee and almond milk are crusted onto my entire motherboard. I had to buy a new computer, which is much cheaper than plastic surgery, I may add. Full of shame and feeling rather ridiculous, I came to realize that I needed to accept myself as I was and cherish my body, instead of focusing on what I didn’t have, which was causing me suffering.

When we look in the mirror we see what we don’t have, and desire a different image. We compare ourselves to the next woman. We don’t see our true essence or beauty. We end up embodying not our own body but the desire for another body, look, and image. This creates separation within us and between our sisters.

Our body is our sanctuary for our own unique divinity. Yet, so often we desire to recreate, and re-imagine our body. The body changes and will always change through age.

Give your body the food it needs to be healthy, honor your spirit’s sanctuary through positive and nourishing relationships, see and feel yourself as beautiful, remove the mirrors, remove the magazines, try to limit negative self-talk, practice self-love and self-acceptance daily, and feed yourself nourishment that your body needs to thrive and be vibrant.

 

Be Nurtured

All because of a flower. Yes, it’s true. A White Ceanothus in the form of a flower essence or tincture of this potent little flower called Mother’s Milk or Loving Support. I feel like myself again. I got into vigilant nurturing of myself. Amen to a host of rituals that bring us back to ourselves. As women we feel called to nurture-as mothers, lovers, partners, friends, and beyond, and so we need to nurture each other and ourselves more often. This has been a deep lesson for me in the past few weeks, as I stopped nursing my daughter. Taking time to nurture myself has given me the energy I need to be a mother and partner, and I am getting back into my grounded place again. I asked myself, “What am I missing? And, what do I need to do to nurture myself?” First, were roses, chocolate, sage burning, and then my oils.

Be nurtured with roses, chocolate, an altar and a prayer, divine essential oils from DoTerra (patchouli, ylang ylang, clary sage), a feather and heart along the way, and taking time to nurture yourself in the ways that only you know how.

What are you missing? What nurtures you? What do you need?