Remembering….

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SP 106 WMSitting in the tub, the water too warm, my skin perspiring from the steam that wisps across the surface. The music carries me, the words touching a place I’ve not taken the time to¬†look into for a while. The candles flicker casting friendly shadows around me and the mix of salts and energies float in the water that holds me. Rose petals, shells, dried leaves, bits of US money, the scents of various essential oils, individually unrecognizable in their mixing but together they are the scent of my retreat in August.

The memories of new friends, of peace and quiet in a beautiful house, of sitting and listening to the world around me and connecting with myself again. There in that peaceful place I could hear the voice in my head that the world around me had drowned out for way too long.

Then I came home and I tried desperately to hold on to my intentions, the peace, the love, the connections but in the craziness of my real world, I was very overwhelmed and struggling to find my center within my own inner peace that for such a brief moment in August I had found.

It was really hard to come home, even as much as I had missed my family, I had missed me even longer and I was afraid of losing her again.

So here I sit in my bath surrounded by the energies of my friends’ intentions which they had cast into the salts and I let them embrace me with their strength. It reminded me of my own intentions cast that day as we sat in circle, holding space for each women to open their heart and fill the bowl with words and offerings of love and need and desire. Babies, new beginnings, strength to make difficult decisions, honouring new connections, finding space for our dreams in a chaotic world that tries to snuff them out, and for abundance in personal and business lives. The requests were as varied as the women and as universal as womanhood and motherhood.

The fundamental intention I brought away from the retreat with me was my need for change. Change in my relationship with my husband most of all but change in general too. I am tired of being sick, I am tired of being tired, I am tired of feeling like my life is out of control and I am powerless to change things. I have worked on making some of those changes but it’s a slow process and part of it is accepting that I can only control myself. Change starts with me.

Perhaps even more importantly though than recognizing my need for change because I’ve known for a long time that change was necessary, I had just been struggling with finding my way, was that I found the strength within myself to stand up and believe that I am worthy of the effort to make those changes. I had diluted and deluded myself into believing that I didn’t matter, that I wasn’t worth my effort or the effort of others and the needs of others were more important than my own but I was wrong.

I truly am worthy. Worthy of being loved and loving myself and everything else branches out from believing in my worth: respect, acceptance, self-care, etc… I am worthy of all of these gifts and they are worth fighting for.

Of course I have to get out of the tub first…..

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A Soul Review

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5632294010_fc3cddc11d_bI sit in the tub, my refuge from the world, rereading my words, editing, wondering if I have the strength to publish them, to share them, knowing there are parts that may upset people close to me. I talk about how I feel, sometimes those words are hard to hear. I’ve referenced divorce, not because I want one but because some days I don’t know if I’m strong enough to make the changes I’m trying to make or if I can live with the things I can’t change about our situation.

I married very young. I was lost and floundering as a single mom. I thought my marriage could save me. It didn’t. But I learned that my expectations were unreasonable. Marriage based on salvationary ideas will fail. It was never my husband’s job. And he had no idea where to start or what I needed, partly because I didn’t either.

We have both tried and are still trying almost sixteen years on. My husband has followed me to every counsellor, marriage help session, couples therapy and family therapy I could drag him to. We met with some success and for a while things would get better.

We’ve had some wonderful times, made some great memories, birthed two amazing children, and enjoyed some very passionate chemistry.

There’s a great deal I love about my husband but there are also a few traits that I wish I could change. I’m sure the sentiment is mutual. I have no delusions of perfection, if anything I don’t give myself enough credit for what I do get right.

I know I can’t change my husband. I can’t make him do anything he doesn’t want to do. And he shouldn’t be trying to change me either. It doesn’t mean we can’t change but that the changes have to come from within ourselves to be truly life altering.

But here’s the question and the point we find ourselves at. Can we live with what we can’t (or won’t) change?

I do explore those ideas in my writings, my feelings surrounding our current situation. They are my feelings and while they may elicit a visceral reaction, the reaction is yours. As I own my feelings, you must own your reactions. It’s easy to lash out, not so easy to sit with the emotions and examine where they come from and why.

Part of the reason for my blog and my writings is exactly that. I am conducting a soul review, digging up what I’ve long kept buried, figuring out what I need and want and going through what I already have and doing a clean sweep to choose what will stay and what no longer serves me. Some decisions will be easy to make, others more complicated but at the end of it all, the question that needs answering is this, “does this honour me, my soul, my life?” If the answer is no than it is time to let go and move on and to find a way to do so in a way that honours the past, present and future.

All I ask is to bear with me as I go through this soul review. It’s a new road for me too and there will be mistakes, but I am pleading for understanding, patience and space to try new things, to let go and to scream and cry and laugh and be real, really real. It’s not an easy thing to ask, but it is what’s needed and as the title of my blog is soul nudism, it’s part of the journey too.

Bathtub Contemplations

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4318089749_fafc96b0fb_bSitting in the tub

Candlelight bouncing off the white enamel

The water quiet,

Rippling with my subtle movements.

I sit, contemplating,

wondering how to do it all.

So many needs to balance.

Where are my needs in that tangled web?

Making others happy,

stretching everything to the limit,

giving all.

I sink back into the quiet, warm embracing water,

I can hear the world outside

the bathroom door.

But I am neither a part of it

Or apart from it

In this moment of heat and

candlelight and quiet,

soaking away the aches

of my labours of giving.

Perspiration running down my cheeks.

The room warm and close,

intimately by myself

and yet the world outside is so close,

a whining voice at the door

“Daddy won’t give me cake.”

Balance.

Searching for it.

Elusive.

This is my one space.

I hide in the bathroom to escape

but the world outside is

constantly there to remind me

“Come back.”

I must go back.

When the room cools

and water chills

and the candles flicker their final flames

I must go back.

Til then I submerge and

try to ignore.

Go into my head, hear my thoughts.

Bleeding my thoughts in ink

so when the real world is drowning me

I can reread the water streaked pages

and remember this place,

this moment, this quiet

just outside the noise

and escape back into it.

Penned May 25, 2014